Total sunshine is the best way to sum up Sally Obermeder. She quite literally oozes happiness from every pore. As a mum of two, TV host, radio presenter, author, breast cancer survivor and co-founder of Swiish.com, Sally is without doubt one of the most Fantastic (and hectically busy!) women we have ever met. Get ready to swindle some awesome tips from her daily life. (Also you need to order her SWIISH DELIISH Super Green Superfood Powder ASAP, that stuff is life changing. Swear).
How many kids have you made?
Annabelle is six and Elyssa is nearly 16 months old.
What’s keeping you busy right now/What’s keeping you awake at night?
LOTS … hahaha … mostly keeping up with the growth of the SWIISH business and working out efficient ways to create systems and process and also trying to grow the team so that we can cope with the rapid expansion. What keeps me awake, are the endless tabs that I gave open like a computer … it’s everything and anything and the dialogue goes a bit like this “don’t forget to fill in Annabelle’s school form”, “what time is that The Daily Edition pre-record?” “Where should we have our next SWIISH dinner?” “Do I need to book a table for a family dinner?”
What do you do for yourself?
For the past few years, I have been focused on my family, my job at Channel Seven and the SWIISH.com business that I’d forgotten about me. I learnt the hard way (getting so sick that blood was pouring out of my ear) that I needed to start prioritising my self care. It’s such a cliché and an annoying one at that, but it’s true – If I’m not 100%, I can’t give 100% to anything else.
At the end of 2017, I made a pact that I would start placing greater emphasis on my self care and also my relationship with Marcus.
So now have a morning exercise schedule that is a non-negotiable. I train at Base Body Studio with my sister and business partner, Maha, 3 mornings a week and we have a personal trainer, Christa, who comes to our home or office once a week. We’re in a little rhythm now and I absolutely love it. I also will never say no to a day at a spa where I can get a massage or a facial. Marcus and I also wanted to start having more fun and doing more hobbies, like we did pre-kids, so we’ve started going to Italian classes every week. So far, I’ve learnt how to say “hello”, “my name is Sally” and “where can I get a pizza?” Hahaha.
Who does what in your house?
Marcus does the grocery shopping and I do all the admin associated with the girls, including school, play dates, parties and extra-curricular activities. We share drop off and pick up and we both cook (usually together).
I do Elyssa’s bath and we alternate story time and homework with Annabelle. We have been together for 17 years so we have become much better at finding a balance between the physical division of housework but I think like most mothers, I still do the majority of the mental thinking of who will go where with whom at what time and all that other stuff that mothers tend to do! Marcus is great at actioning it as long as I tell him what to do hahaha!
Give us a quick snapshot of how your average morning runs…
I try and wake up before the girls every morning. Ideally half an hour but even 10 minutes is better than nothing. I use this time to get a head start on the day before the day takes over and consumes me. If I am really organised, I will meditate and have a strong coffee in silence or if it’s a rush job, I’ll skip the meditation and head straight for the caffeine!
As soon as the girls wake up, it’s go, go, go with breakfast, getting dressed and tearing the scooter/hoola hoop/roller skates off Annabelle and corralling her into the car. Mornings are a mix of chatter and laughter and a few eye rolls and deep sighs!
What’s for breakfast in your house?
Without fail, I will always have a green smoothie and a glass of water with our SWIISH DELIISH Super Green Superfood Powder. The powder is loaded with over 40 fruits, veggies, prebiotics, probiotics and superfoods so I know that I’m getting a dose of all the good stuff first thing in the morning. It makes me feel good to know I’ve done something for myself and my health first up.
I swear by green smoothies for glowing skin, good digestion and overall amazing health. The one that’s high on rotation at the moment is our Green Supreme Layered Smoothie from our latest book Simple and Lean. It’s got mango, banana, spinach and almond milk in it so it basically tastes like summer in a jar.
Annabelle generally has toast while Elyssa has overnight oats with chopped up banana and mango. Both girls also have our SUPER KIDS powder which is packed with veggies, fruits and superfoods for growing bodies.
What do you pack in your kids’ lunchbox?
Annabelle is old enough now to help us make her lunch and we’ve figured out this is the best way to get her to eat everything. We use bento box style lunch boxes and make up a ‘veggie box’ for her, which has sliced carrot, cucumber, celery and cherry tomatoes. She’ll also have vegemite crackers, yoghurt, and a treat of her choice. For the treat, she’ll usually pick something herself or I will make a big batch of something out of Simple and Lean. The Raspberry Coconut Balls are her favourite at the moment and are super simple to make with only five ingredients. She loves it because it tastes sweet and I love that it’s healthy!
Elyssa doesn’t have a lunch box yet so she eats off my plate and quite literally straight out of my hand. She’s a much bigger consumer of cheese and meat compared to Annabelle – Elyssa is the carnivore, whilst Annabelle is more the vegan!!
What’s your go-to dinner the kids will always eat?
Our go-to is a Deconstructed Rice Paper Roll Bowl from Simple and Lean and I think it works so well because the kids can build their own. We put all the ingredients on the dining table like a buffet and they can just pick what they want. Marcus and I can also eat it and add more ingredients (like chilli) that aren’t as kid-friendly. This one is also great to make when you have guests over and you’ve got lots of mouths to feed. It keeps everyone happy!
Deconstructed Rice Paper Roll Bowl
DF // GF // NF // SF // 2385 KJ/570 CAL PER SERVE // SERVES 4
Small barbecued chicken, skin removed and shredded
100 g/3½ oz vermicelli noodles, cooked (about 2 cups)
2 Lebanese (short) cucumbers, sliced into matchsticks
100 g (3½ oz/1 cup) snow peas (mangetout), thinly sliced
1 large avocado, thinly sliced
2 carrots, grated
1 red capsicum (pepper), seeded and sliced into matchsticks
4 large leaves butter lettuce, sliced
1 mango, thinly sliced
25 g (1 oz/½ cup) basil leaves, sliced
10 g (¼ oz/½ cup mint leaves, sliced
1 red chilli, seeded and sliced (optional)
1 cup ready-made kimchi handful of bean sprouts (optional)
80 ml (2½ fl oz/⅓ cup) sweet chilli sauce
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
1 tablespoon fish sauce
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
Put all the dressing ingredients into a small bowl or mixing jug and whisk to combine. Arrange four serving bowls, dividing all ingredients equally between them and placing each ingredient around the side of the bowl.
Top with the chilli and sprouts (if using) and drizzle with the dressing.
- If you’re extra-hungry, use more avocado.
- A swap we like to make sometimes is five cooked king prawns (shrimp) per serve from the local fishmonger, instead of chicken.
- If you don’t want it spicy, drop the kimchi as well as the red chilli.
What are your favourite bedtime books for kids?
I have a book that I grew up with, that Annabelle now has and it’s called The Value of Believing in Yourself, it’s the story of Louis Pasteur, the amazing scientist who created the vaccine for rabies and he also invented the process of pasteurisation. It’s essentially a book about how people thought he was odd and they disregarded him and made fun of him, but he didn’t care. He knew he was working on something important that meant something to him and so he carried on despite the taunts. He then goes on to save a little boy and of course becomes the hero. But the moral is, you have to believe in yourself. Which is a theme I love and wholeheartedly believe in.
Did you have any family traditions as a kid and have you continued those or started new ones with your kids?
We started a Thanksgiving tradition at home thanks to Elyssa being born via a surrogate in the States in 2016. It’s been a beautiful new tradition that we have loved welcoming into our home. We do a huge sit down family dinner and it’s been a beautiful way to inject some Americana into our home.
We have also started a tradition that our surrogate family did, which is called the Summer Fun List. On the last day of term, we get a big piece of butcher’s paper and write all the things we want to do over the summer on it. We choose a mix of new activities, like camping on the balcony or having a lemonade stand, along with our favourite things, plus we include activities in the give back category, like helping hand out food at a homeless shelter, and we tick them off as we do them. It’s been a beautiful new tradition.
In terms of traditions from my house, aside form all the usual ones, my mum created CC Tuesdays. Meaning Chargrill Chicken Tuesdays, which now looking back I can see was “I don’t feel like cooking” Tuesdays. LOL. So in the spirit of my mumma, we have also adopted it into our home. Well, sort of. I changed it to Pizza Tuesdays because I swear I was Italian in another life. We have an open door policy, so whoever is free comes over and they always know what they’re having. It’s also a nice chance to catch up with everyone mid-week.
What do you like doing as a family?
For us, it’s all about the simple things in life. We live right near a huge park so one of our weekend rituals is to walk down there with scooters, soccer balls and food. Marcus and I will get a coffee and a bite to eat from the café and we literally spend hours walking around, playing and petting every.single.dog. that walks past us. We wouldn’t have it any other way!
What can you teach me in a couple of minutes?
I can show you how to nail a deliciously sweet whip that tastes amazing and has so many hidden vegetables in it that you would fall over if I told you the truth! It also takes about one minute to make, which is a bonus! Oh and it’s dairy free, sugar free, gluten free and nut free and is super low in calories!
Skinny and SWIISH Whipped Superfood Bowl
DF // GF // NF // SF // V // VG // P //
443 KJ/106 CAL PER SERVE // SERVES 2
2 frozen bananas
40 g (1½ oz/¼ cup) frozen chopped pineapple
1 teaspoon lime juice
Zest of ½ lime
2 teaspoons SWIISH DELIISH Super Green Superfood Powder
Put all the ingredients into a food processor and blend. You will see that the ingredients start out a bit crumbly; just keep blending until it comes together into a whip.
Get all your ingredients ready before you start: you’ll want to ensure that everything goes into the blender frozen, as that will produce the best consistency.
- Tinned pineapple is fine, but rinse it first.
- Our SWIISH DELIISH Super Green Superfood Powder contains more than 40 different fruits, vegetables, superfoods and probiotics. It also has a deliciously refreshing pine–lime flavour, and we’ve amped up this recipe with the lime juice and rind. If you already have another green superfood powder blend you can use that, but the flavour will be different. Ours is available from shop.swiish.com.
What words would your husband/best friend/kids use to describe you?
I just asked the team and this is what they said: hilarious, generous, tenacious, determined, kind, unstoppable. Thanks gorgeous girls!
Give us one tip we can all steal from your life that will simplify ours?
I voice record all of my emails when I am working off my phone, rather than typing everything out. It makes my life so much faster and easier and now I can’t imagine going back to typing!
The most memorable book you’ve ever read?
This is the most recent, memorable book – You Are A Badass: How To Stop Doubting Your Greatness by Jen Sincero. I read it when we went on a family holiday to the beach in the January school holidays. I love how open and refreshing Jen is about life and taking charge of your happiness and destiny, but also at the absolute core is that it’s about being kind to yourself and loving yourself. As well as being insightful it’s also surprisingly funny.
The last great podcast you listened to?
I love Gabrielle Bernstein’s podcast. All the episodes are based on creating a happy life but in a non-cheesy way. My sister, Maha, got me onto Gabrielle and I am obsessed. Her book, Spirit Junkie, is also amazing.
TV series you’re loving right now?
Unreal on Stan. This show is BRILLIANT. If you haven’t seen it do yourself a favour and sit back with a vino and watch and laugh. I’m also really looking forward to The Mentor with Mark Bouris, which is coming soon to Channel Seven.
What was your last fashion purchase?
One of the reasons I wanted to open our SWIISH online store is so that I’d constantly have clothes to shop from on a regular basis hahaha. I’m joking but it is one of the best perks! When we started the e-commerce side of our business, Maha and I made a pact to only stock pieces that we would wear and that’s what we’ve done ever since. We only stock pieces that we absolutely adore, which means that I don’t actually get out to the shops that often because I have everything in the office.
In saying that though, we don’t sell shoes (I’m constantly asking Maha if we can haha!) so my shoe addiction is at an all-time high! I recently got a pair of boots from Alias Mae that are so luxe and so fabulous. They’re the Cordella in black.
These guys make beautiful shoes … I pretty much wore these heels everyday this past summer.
Best health or beauty hack?
People think I am absolutely crazy when I say this but I apply magnesium oil to the soles of my feet every single night and I am seriously out like a light. The skin on your feet absorbs magnesium oil really well, which promotes an incredibly restful sleep.
The three beauty products you buy over and over again?
- Aerin Lauder’s Gardenia Rattan fragrance
- Lanolips Lemonaid Lip Treatment
- Rev-Oil-Ution Body Oil
What’s the best holiday you’ve ever had with the kids?
Ayana in Bali – because 5 star resort. I mean, need I say more???? LOL.
Locally, my favourite place and regular destination with the kids in tow is Byron Bay because it’s easy to manage and it ticks the box for everyone. Byron has everything you need in a holiday – the beach and parks for the kids, GREAT food using local produce, amazing and lots of great shopping. The fact that we can escape the city grind and be in the sunshine after a one-hour flight is a bonus.
Thanks Sally! You’re fantastic.