Life has changed dramatically in the past eight years for Melbourne actress Madeline West. Her days as Dee Bliss in Neighbours are long over, as motherhood becomes her main responsibility.
Madeleine, 35 has six children with Vue de Monde chef and a MasterChef regular Shannon Bennett, 40. The couple’s six children are called Phoenix, Hendrix, Xascha, Xanthe, Xahlia and Margaux.
Raising six children under eight years of age is not a small task. However, Madeleine has decided to share her parenting insights in a book.
The book, appropriately named Six Under Eight: When Parenting Becomes an Extreme Sport, evolved from notes and diary entries that Madeleine wrote on tantrums, bedtimes, teething, lunchboxes and getting the kids to eat all their veggies. Her trick to getting the children to eat more vegetables involved teaching them more about where they came from.
In a recent chat with the Herald Sun, Madeleine revealed that partner Shannon, who is referred to as “The Chef” in her book, is a dedicated dad but is often away due to his restaurant empire and TV commitments.
Madeleine has shared several pictures on her Instagram showing what meal preparation for six kids look like. Most recently she posted the following picture showing off her cooking skills specifically tagging Bennett.
“TONIGHT'S COOKING FOR KIDS CONCOCTION: Baby beef n brioche boppers with French butter mash.... @chefbennett23 eat your heart…”
Madeleine also revealed that her and Bennett never planned to have such a big family. In fact the couple fell in to the 1 per cent of people for whom hormonal contraception failed. Bennett commented at the time, “We were done two kids ago but destiny had other ideas. They’re all wonderful and a blessing, but four is quite enough.”
Madeleine recently shared another one of her top tips on The Morning Show, whilst promoting her new book “If all else fails, throw a box of Nutri-Grain on the floor, lock the doors and hope for the best!”