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Month: June 2017

12 Places to Eat Breakfast in Belfast

12 Places to Eat Breakfast in Belfast

It’s Friday folks; we made it! I am feeling a lot more human today after a few days of feeling very ‘meh’ and being largely confined to my bedroom with nothing but Love Island to keep me company (get off your judgement pony, the show is chewing gum for the brain!). Now I am raring for a weekend full of plans and hopefully a little bit of dancing thrown in for good measure!

 

I have a work BBQ tonight which I am nerdishly excited about (I’m on the Social Committee so extra nerd points for me, thanks) and I am just praying that the rain clouds do the cool thing and feck off for a few hours. The rest of the weekend might involve a wee local festival or an afternoon drive but will definitely include brunch with my little sister who is coming up for a wee visit to the big smoke.

 

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Since moving to Belfast over two years ago it feels like there has been a new café opening every other weekend; the options are endless and there are still plenty of places that I am yet to try. Having visitors is the perfect excuse for exploring new spots and this weekend I’ll be taking Shannon for a feed that will no doubt be a cure for the night before.

 

Venturing out of the house for breakfast is a real treat and not something we do too often but when we do I like to really take my time to enjoy it. There are a few places that I definitely would recommend and so I thought I would include them in a post for those of you in need of a little inspiration for this weekend or for the next time you’re visiting this vibrant wee city of ours. I’m no fibber though so there are a couple here that are still on my hit list but that I’ve heard such good things about them that I’m sure you are bound to love them too. I hope.

 

Wishing you all a lovely weekend filled with whatever makes your heart and face happy 🙂

 

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If you’re lookin’ for a fry…

It wouldn’t be an Irish breakfast post without a mention of the Ulster Fry. When we were growing up my lovely Mum used to cook a full fry for us without fail every Saturday morning with enough carbs to fill a horse. Soda bread, potato bread, pancakes… no wonder I was an absolute puddin’ as a child. If you’re in the mood to have a feast then definitely give this lot a go…

Baker Street

This joint is in East Belfast so might not be too handy for some of you but for the likes of me on that side of town, this place is perfect for a weekend treat. There is a great variety on the menu in case you’re after something different but I would definitely recommend going the traditional route!

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Café Conor

An old reliable found in the Queen’s Quarter of town that always has a great wee buzz about it. It’s a handy place to go before going across the road to the Botanic Gardens or Ulster Museum to walk off the feast.

Town Square

Found beneath the trees of Botanic, this corner spot is a place I keep returning to. The food is always delicious and they have plenty of events on in the evenings in case you find yourself staying on for an all-day session!

 

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If you’re lookin’ for something guilt-free…

Going out for a heavy fry can sometimes feel a bit too much, especially when we’re supposed to be maintaining these summer bodies (ahem). The places above still offer a few healthy options but if you’re after some fresh seasonal ingredients then be sure to try either of these two.

The Skinny Kitchen

I’ve been hearing really great things about this from my healthy friends and I keep meaning to give it a whirl but I never seem to make the trek across the city. It’s on Boucher Road so it’s perfect if you’re planning on doing some shopping after but since it’s on the opposite side of town, I haven’t quite made it yet. Soon though!

 

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The Little Pink Kitchen

If you’re in to something a little bit different then you should check out The Little Pink Kitchen where you can enjoy a healthy home-cooked breakfast in Sarah’s very own kitchen. I’ve been lucky enough to taste Sarah’s food before at an Assembly Gathering I went to last Autumn and I practically licked the plate (her wild garlic dip was the talk of the event). You have to book but for £15 you will be fed very well. The next breakfast is on the 9th July and I think there’s a good chance I will be there!

 

If you’re so hungover all you can stomach is coffee…

As a non-coffee drinker (SHOCK! HORROR!), I tend to go by Andrew’s feedback as to which places do the tastiest coffee. There’s even a Belfast coffee map app now which is proof that the city is a hotspot for coffee-lovers!

Root & Branch

These guys have their own roastery on site so there was no doubt that their hole in the wall would go down a storm. Here you can grab a coffee, tea or small snack before exploring the rest of the Ormeau Road.

 

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5A

When I lived in South Belfast this was my Sunday favourite despite it always being so busy. There is a reason why customers come in their droves because their coffee is the best in the area but my reason was because of their foccacias which are unbelievable. Definitely worth a try before going on a wee dander down the Lagan towpath!

District

The second place in the list from the Ormeau Road but another popular coffee joint. There are plenty of others that are cropping up nearby too so you could do a wee coffee crawl if you’re tempted (although maybe go decaf for one or two stops).

 

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If you want to be really naughty…

Sometimes you want to just skip breakfast and get straight down to the bad stuff. There’s no judgement here. If it’s doughnuts, gelato or waffles stacked with sugar then these three are good places to start.

Guilt Trip

This joint is the new kid in town which is popping up everywhere on my Insta feed. I don’t know why I haven’t tried their doughnuts yet but it is something I’m very ashamed of so I will have to remedy it this weekend!

Indigo Coffee & Gelato

Another new-ish café to the scene but as someone who has recently tasted their salted caramel gelato, I can truly attest that this will be a firm fixture on my summer circuit.

 

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The Pocket

The waffles here should be enough to entice me but the chance to people watch by their window is an added bonus. As an avid tea drinker, I fully appreciate the wee hourglasses they bring out so you can time how long to stew your tea for. It’s the little things!

 

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Have a lovely weekend!

 

What Not To Worry About #27

What Not To Worry About #27

Well friends, I am writing this post from a sick bed struck down with some unbeknownst sickness surrounded by pillows and tissues like the bloody Queen of Sheba. Like most sane people on this Earth I hate being sick. I hate the self-pity that comes rolling in along with it and the guilt of having to call work like some sniffling criminal. Why must we stress so much when our bodies remind us that we need to rest?

 

So I have been forced to listen and sleep and drink tea and sleep some more. I have watched some terrible movies that would normally have me cringing to my core but today I am crying in to my tenth cup of tea wondering what has come over me. I tend to become overly sensitive when I am ill – am the only one? I need constant reassurance and berate myself for being so pathetic for needing cuddles on demand but I find that cuddles are the best medicine. And ice cold Lucozade.

 

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All photos taken by the lovely Rebecca from A Clothes Horse

 

I also veer on the negative side when I’m poorly which is why this wee post came in hand this afternoon. It’s amazing (and a little bit disconcerting) how my mood can change like the wind as soon as I become vulnerable. One minute I am more Beyoncé than Beyoncé herself and the next I am the ultimate dependent woman. Taking the time out to have some perspective has definitely lifted this girl out of her wallowing ways.

 

So this week here are the few things I will choose to let go of instead of bringing me down…

 

Feeling weak

As mentioned above I don’t enjoy feeling weak but we have to accept that we can’t always be invincible. We need to rest, accept help when we need it and find some happiness in the moments when we can relish in being still.

People who steal parking spaces

Tescos carpark can be a real war-zone at around 6pm on a Monday. People become animals behind the steering wheel as they fight for the space closest to the door so their wee legs won’t buckle from the strain of pushing a trolley full of shopping. I’m the biggest culprit! I usually curse anyone that steals the spot I was gunning for but this week I will be happy for the extra few metres that I have to walk and count it towards the cardio I keep talking about needing more of.

Leaving voicemails

God help anyone who has to listen to one of my voicemails!! I am a mumbling wreck when I have to leave one – the pressure is too much! Even calling my pharmacy and listing my own name and number is enough to induce a moment of panic.

Roll on deodorant

This stuff actually makes me sweat making it a complete waste of time. I hate aerosol cans though because of my general love of the planet but roll on just doesn’t cut it.

Empty toilet rolls

People who don’t replace empty toilet rolls are just complete hallions in my eyes.

 

And that’s it for today. Wishing you a lovely week and here’s to hoping for some more of that sun that we love complaining about!!

What Not To Worry About #26

What Not To Worry About #26

Hello friends. How about this weather we’re having here on the emerald isle? It’s been such a treat to get a little sun-kissed on my lunch break and to feel my skin tingling as I retreat back inside. My favourite part has to be cooking with the backdoor open and allowing the warm air to fill the house with scents of summer. What’s not been so great though is the constant sneezing and eye-streaming that’s been gracing my face the last few weeks (making make-up absolutely pointless) and has turned me in to a sniffling wreck. All worth it though for a few moments of heat!

 

Last weekend was probably one of the best I’ve had all year as Andrew and I weaved our way across London celebrating his birthday. I booked the trip as his birthday present and even managed to keep it a secret until a few days before (a huge achievement for me!). We had 4 days to explore the big smoke which wreaked havoc with our feet and I definitely sweated from every pore of my body but we immersed ourselves in the city life, soaking in as much as we could.

 

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It was a trip I think we both needed and we have come back home feeling more energised and motivated than we have been in the last month or two. It’s funny how only a few days away from the daily grind of work, chores and routine can wake us from a slumber we don’t fully realise we are in. Our relationships can be the silent victims in this gentle descent; we forget to really talk to each other, immersing ourselves in computer and phone screens in an attempt to destress.

 

This weekend we didn’t look at screens for most of the day (except to take photos of course, always have time for that) and instead we got lost in new streets, discovering parts of the city we had never been to while eating as much good food as we could manage. We had conversations that didn’t revolve around work or family but allowed our words to meander between random topics as we hopped from tube to tube. It was a wonderful few days and I won’t leave it too long until we get lost again.

 

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And here are a few worries I will be letting go of this week…

 

Always having to be the leader

I have realised over the last few years that I have this incessant need to be the leader on a holiday. I love to plan the itinerary, research the best places to eat and take control of the map when trying to find our bearings. I’ve slowly learned to relinquish this control but I have this weird joy for planning the BEST. TRIP. EVER and surely this isn’t the worse thing?

Having to wear a bra

Summertime is not a good season for under garments especially when you get those beautiful under-boob sweat patches that just scream summer chic. There truly is no better feeling than taking off your bra as soon as you come home and flinging it in the corner – let those ta-ta’s free!!

Being terrible at replying to messages

Apologies to all those who have ever messaged me. I do intend on replying but I have a mind like a sieve and also I am just crap at replying.

Finishing a TV series

I always get so sad when finishing a TV series and my most recent mourning is for The Handmaid’s Tale. Hole Moses if you haven’t seen it you have to!

Being a nag

Really trying not to nag Andrew when he decides to stay up late, sleep in or refuse to organise his clothes. I am not his mother. Repeat: I am not his mother.

 

And that’s it for this week. Enjoy these sunny days folks!!

 

Local Favourites: Glaslough

Local Favourites: Glaslough

A village that boasts a castle, cottage-lined streets and ivy-clad walls is always guaranteed to win me over but the village of Glaslough in Co. Monaghan is nothing short of just plain lovely. It’s a place I’ve been coming to since I was a child but the beauty of the village still manages to surprise me every time I visit. It’s without doubt my favourite village in Ireland and so had to be included in my Local Favourites.

 

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The village hugs the edge of the Castle Leslie estate which has belonged to the Leslie family since it was built in the late 19th century. Although it is more like a manor house, the castle is a Victorian vision set against the backdrop of the lake the village is named after. The castle is a very popular luxury wedding destination (Sir Paul McCartney and Heather Mills married here) and so it’s quite difficult to get a room on the weekends. Instead, my sister and I stayed in the ‘hunting lodge’ by the castle gates which are just as impressive and a little more convenient.

 

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The lodge has two restaurants, a spa and the stables that can be accessed via the basement. This makes staying here a little more appealing since we were able to just walk to the spa in our dressing gowns after our breakfast (AKA the best morning ever). The rooms we stayed in were stunning and were full of character just like the building’s exterior; all dark wood and heavy curtains. Double doors then opened up to a bathroom with a walk-in shower and a free-standing bath that I fell in love with immediately. The lodge is also pet-friendly which is great news to those who can’t leave their pooches for too long!

 

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Needless to say a night in the lodge is enough to delight anyone needing an escape but in case you want to wander outside or visit for the day, here are a few tips for those new to Glaslough.

 

Where to Eat

The village is tiny so outside of the castle there is little on offer. Within the Castle there are two places to stuff your face depending on how fancy you want the food to be. Snaffler’s the more upscale restaurant and is also where you eat your breakfast if you’re staying in the lodge. We didn’t eat dinner here but I have to say the breakfast selection was really impressive – make sure to grab the granola pots early!

 

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Connor’s Bar is on the ground floor and although it’s a little more low-key, the food is still incredibly yummy as the ingredients are locally sourced as they are for Snaffler’s. My sister and I took my Mum, aunt and cousin to Connor’s for Mother’s Day recently and my salad was so tasty that I found myself finishing way before everyone else! You can expect a lot more than just pub grub with the price not being too bad either.

 

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Although both of the above are great choices, my recommendation would be to dander out of the castle gates and down Barrack Hill to your right. Here you will find Ambledown Cottage which is just about the sweetest place to eat dinner. The cottage is adorned with flowers and old trinkets so I was in love at first sight before even trying the food. Inside there is an open fire and conservatory to eat in but it’s the back of the cottage that had me giddy with excitement. They have transformed the area in to a dream of fairy lights and candles with tables distributed in different outhouses making it just about the most romantic place in town.

 

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The menu at Ambledown is confined to mostly pizza but man are they scrumptious. I find it difficult to finish pizza on my own but I had zero problems that night! I also liked the fact that it was BYO which allowed us to totter back to our room and finish the bottle in our dressing gowns 🙂

 

Where to Drink

There are only two pubs in town and even on a Friday night they are very quiet. It didn’t bother Shannon and I since we were there to relax but in case you’re up for a party, you might be a bit disappointed. That said, the Coachouse Bar does have live music on a Saturday so it might be a bit busier then! It’s definitely busy on a sunny afternoon with the benches outside filling up fairly fast. Inside it’s like entering an old house with lots of wee rooms to while a few hours over some pints.

 

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The Pillar House Hotel is the second pub in the village and another place to enjoy a beer or two. I’ve been told it has a pool room if you fancied killing time on a rainy day or or doing a crawl of the two pubs in town!

 

What to Do

Cookery school – Castle Leslie has its own cookery school which offers one day or two day courses for up to 12 people. This would be a great idea to enjoy as a package when staying at the Castle, I can only imagine how amazing the ingredients would be!

 

Horse riding – there is a well-equipped equestrian centre by the hunting lodge with a trail that takes you across the entire estate. The horses are beautiful, we even got to meet a few after our spa treatments.

 

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Spa – speaking of spa, the Victorian treatment rooms were the perfect place to start our day. We both got facials which left our skin feeling like a newborns and then relaxed in the hot tub with blue skies above us.

 

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Walking – there are many walks and trails around the Castle Leslie and there’s even an app that you can download to listen to while on your ramble.

 

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Antiques & Crafts – there is an antiques shop in town to discover some preloved gems as well as an art gallery to wander through.

 

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Despite being such a small town, Glaslough has so much to offer anyone in need of an escape not far from home. It’s a village that packs in so much character without sacrificing it’s charm and will be forever my favourite village.

 

Do you have a favourite village in Ireland? Are there any places you feel are under-appreciated? Please share!!

 

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What Not To Worry About #25

What Not To Worry About #25

I missed doing this post last week. It’s a post I look forward to writing because it’s the only time I allow myself to focus on the little things that I needlessly stress about and ask myself why I even give them the time of day. It’s easy to lose perspective when there are a million worries running through my brain:

Is it someone’s birthday soon?

Do we have enough milk for tea tonight?

Did I defrost the chicken?

When is my tax up on the car?

Is she annoyed at me for that thing I said?

Why do I get spots in my late twenties?

Am I making a difference?

Do I like where I am?

 

This madness can consume me if I allow it to but I think just being aware of my thoughts is one step closer to getting better control over them. Yes there are always going to be things to remember and yes I will have a random memory about one time when I was hammered in 2009 that will torment for the rest of my days BUT I can acknowledge the thought and then move on. I am usually a fairly laid back person but when one area of my life is suffering then the small things seem to become larger and more overwhelming.

 

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The best thing for me to do in these cases is to remove myself from the chaos and find somewhere quiet to just be for a moment. I have spoken before about the importance of prioritising these moments of solitude because it’s my way of regaining a bit more stability and understanding that it’s all going to be OK. When things are going rough we can have a tendency to focus on the present and lack the foresight needed to understand that it’s not permanent. Instead of spending time worrying about things that are out of our control, wouldn’t it be much better to acknowledge them for a second and then brush them off? Wouldn’t be much better to give ourselves a break and a moment to appreciate all that we do? Yes, I think so too.

 

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All photos by the lovely Rebecca of A Clothes Horse

And with that in mind, here are a few of the worries I am letting go of this week.

 

Not having a dog

This is a fact that makes me sad sometimes but not having a dog also means that I don’t have to sit in work feeling guilty all day knowing that my wee furball is lonely. Also means that I don’t have to be dragged about in the rain to walk off energy. Still can’t wait though.

Always forgetting my bag for life

I feel like the worst environmentalist in the world when I pull up to the shop and realise that all of my bag-for-life-bags are in that wee hole in the kitchen where we stuff them all. I curse myself every time and buy another one to add to the collection.

Cop cars

Why do I feel like an instant criminal as soon as I see a cop car? I haven’t done a thing wrong but all of a sudden I have an urge to escape from them at the earliest chance. Creeps.

My love of bread

With the bikini season well and truly here I have given up on the idea of washboard abs and will not be saying goodbye to the carb-filled joy of my heart. Bring on the baguettes.

People who play it safe

You know those people who pull a ridiculous face when you suggest doing something out of the ordinary? Like when someone asks what you’re doing for the weekend and you say that you might go camping which induces a look of pure horror. “Sure it gives it to rain for a half an hour on Saturday!! Are ye mad? Oh no, you wouldn’t catch me at that now. Oh no, sure ye’d be drenched in thon rain! No, I will be sitting up in the house there and staying put so I will”. Arrgghh!!

 

And that’s it for this week! Anything you are choosing to let go of???

My Summer Soundtrack

My Summer Soundtrack

It’s funny how the music we listen to changes with the seasons. In the winter I find myself listening to slow folk and acoustic songs that make me feel cosy on the inside. But in the summer it’s all about dance, soul and R&B. The kind of music that has me moonwalking my way to the back garden with a cold beer in my hand despite the fact that it’s a rainy Monday evening.

 

When we were growing up my Mum would play music in the kitchen in the evenings especially in the summer when the back door would be thrown open and the music would filter in to the garden. She had a big influence on my taste in music and introduced me to artists I’m still in love with today; Prince, Marvin Gaye, Bill Withers, Aretha Franklin, Nina Simone, KC & the Sunshine Band. We listened to songs that taught us how to move and that allowed us to lose ourselves in the rhythm. Songs that taught us soul and about things we were too young to understand (singing along to Prince lyrics as an eight year old is a little disturbing looking back).

 

I thought I might share a few of my favourites that have become my summer anthems over the years. These are the tunes that I play loudly after a shitty day at work and are guaranteed to lift me up and remind me that it’s summer and there is no call for being sad. They are the summeriest of summer songs and you have my total permission to use them for your own summer soundtrack. I recommend being barefoot and having all the windows open. Just don’t blame me if the neighbours get at ya!!

 

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Michael Jackson – Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough

Say what you will about MJ but this song is a classic disco tune that will have you moonwalking your slippers.

Fleetwood Mac – Everywhere

Ugh, Fleetwood Mac and their friggin’ melodies get me everytime.

Van Morrisson – Into The Mystic

“Smell the sea and feel the sky; let your soul and spirit fly in to the mystic”. Lyrics that floored me as a teenager.

Beyoncé – Crazy in Love

Because you can’t have a summer party without Queen B.

Bob Marley – Three Little Birds

This song reminds me of a trip I took around SE Asia with two of my best friends. We got matching tattoos of three birds on our ribcage and every time this song comes on we have a knowing look between the three of us.

10cc – Dreadlock Holiday

The second this song is on I slow down and smile.

Toto – Africa

I love trying to sing along to this song, especially in my car when I know I terrify all other drivers.

Prince – Raspberry Beret

Probably his least filthy song so you can play it a family party.

Marvin Gaye – Got To Give It Up

Makes me want to have a glamorous poolside party in California.

Will Smith – Miami

Cheesy but so so good!!

Cornershop – Brimful of Asha (Norman Cook Remix)

An oldie but a goodie.

Len – Steal my Sunshine

Despite this being played on every day the sun shines in Ireland I still love it.

U2 – I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For

The guitars, the drums, the vocals. An Irish classic.

Angus & Julia Stone – Mango Tree

Brings the tempo down for sure but this brother/sister duo melts my summer hear.

LCD Soundsystem – Daft Punk Is Playing In My House

To be played loudly preferably with some couch dancing.

The Clash – Rock the Casbah

This was my ringtone in Uni I loved it that much.

The Knack – My Sharona

I defy you not to dance to this song!!

Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeroes – 40 Day Dream

The happiest of summer songs that has me stamping my little hooves with sheer glee.

All Saints – Pure Shores

No one can do 90’s beach chic like All Saints

Jurassic 5 – Work It Out

This is my summer bath tune. Yes that is a thing.

Fatboy Slim – Praise You

A song that will never go out of style. Never.

 

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How to Revive Tired Skin for Summer

How to Revive Tired Skin for Summer

Summer in Ireland can be very deceptive. Just when you think you are safe to dry clothes outside or plan a weekend in the outdoors, the clouds darken and the rain ridicules you for being so smug. As I am writing this I am curled up in our armchair watching the torrents batter the window and the wind is howling. Hello June!!

 

Those little pockets of sunshine may be few here but when the clouds do decide to part, the heat can be a shock to the system. My skin definitely suffers as a result of the ever-changing weather; my skin loses moisture, my lips crack and my forehead does this lovely thing of breaking out in lots of wee spots. To try and combat this I have ramped up the beauty routine (which is pretty non-existent to be fair) and introduced some homemade products using ingredients I know will help soothe my skin and bring it back to life.

 

I have written about my love of natural products before, especially when it comes to skincare. And although there are a plethora of organic gems available for not-so-horrifying prices,  there is something to be said for whipping up your own creation with ingredients just hanging out in your cupboards. Good products should only require a handful of ingredients and I have found some great recipes that will surely brighten up any weather-beaten body.

 

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Lemon & Lavender Sugar Scrub

I use lavender essential oil religiously for lots of homemade recipes like this room spray which I spritz on clothes, curtains, my car, gym bag, bed pillows. Basically anything that I think can delay washing for another few days! The combination with lemon creates the most incredible smell that is so summery – just don’t be tempted to eat the scrub because it doesn’t taste as good as it smells!

 

The scrub contains coconut oils which will inject some much needed moisture in to that tired skin. I make a batch and keep it next to the bath for those days when a good soak is the only cure for a hectic day. If you want to feel like a proper princess then add a few drops of lavender oil to the bath while you’re there and put on your favourite podcast – heaven!

Ingredients

  • 1 cup of granulated sugar
  • 4 tbsp coconut oil
  • 15 drops essential oil
  • 2 tbsp fresh lavender buds (optional)

Method

  • Melt coconut oil at high temperature in microwave
  • Add sugar, lavender oil and lavender buds
  • Place in pot and enjoy!

 

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Lip Scrub

Those little peckers can get a rough time between seasons with the summer making them especially vulnerable. Use this scrub to remove the dead skin and the coconut oil will give them that wee bit of nourishment that they are craving. Follow up with this lip balm and you will feel instantly renewed (and no longer resemble a scabies victim.. Just me?).

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 5 drops vanilla extract

Method

  • Heat coconut in microwave and then mix in the rest of the ingredients
  • Add to small lip pots

 

Green Tea Face Mist

Making your own face mist may just be the most decadent thing you do but my goodness is it refreshing. This mist is best left in the fridge and then spritzed on a make-up free face on a hot evening. It’s also a life saver when travelling on a plane to help awaken tired skin.

The green tea acts as a natural soother and is packed full of those infamous antioxidants that will give your face that summer glow (and not the sweaty kind). I also add a little Vitamin E oil to help soothe and moisturise the skin that bit more.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup of green tea
  • 1/2 cup of distilled water
  • 10 drops Vitamin E oil

Method

  • Boil the green tea and leave to stew for an hour
  • Mix the tea with the distilled water and vitamin E oil
  • Add a spray bottle and give a good shake
  • Leave in the fridge

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What Not To Worry About #24

What Not To Worry About #24

Morning all! My weekly post is a little late this week. I think the long weekend tricked me in to thinking I was on holidays for a wee second and now I feel like I’m still catching up! I hope you enjoyed the extra bit of weekend even though we had a major rainfest here. Not to worry though – I got treated to lunch by my Granny and dinner by my Dad so no room to complain! Diet schmiet!

 

Although the rain was a little deflating, it was comforting to spend some time with family after a pretty horrendous week. With more attacks in the UK, Syria, Afghanistan and the Philippines (to name a few), it seems that we are inundated with horrific images from the media on a daily basis. Although atrocities closer to home can ignite a stronger sense of shock across our society, it should not be ignored that ceaseless attacks by all sides are occurring globally and children are too often the victims of the crossfire. It’s a scary time. We don’t feel safe with the politicians we have on offer, the environment is in peril (with Trump on the brink of pulling the US out of the Paris climate deal as I write this) and Justin Bieber is showing no signs of fecking off.

 

In these moments it’s entirely natural to want to crawl under the covers, hug our knees to our chest and wonder what the point of it all is. Until we choose to look up again and be reminded of just how lovely this Earth can be. Like when we see on the news of how the homeless men went to the aid of the injured during the attacks in Manchester. Or when your Granny sends you a letter in the post. Or a conversation with a stranger that completely blind sides you so much that you smile like an eejit for the next hour. Or when your loved one drives you to pretty gardens just so you can take some photos (even though they having a stinking hangover).

 

There is so much kindness in this world. Kindness that obliterates the bad and the evil. And almost all of us have this capacity for joy so it’s more important than ever to emit it out in the world and let it touch all those around you. Make it a priority in your life because you will surely feel a little better about getting up in the mornings just knowing that you alone can create your own happiness.

 

And with that in mind, here’s a few things I am not going to worry about this week…

 

The new £1 coin

Where can I use it? Will vending machines swallow it up? Can I pay my parking with it?? Too many worries for one coin.

Slow Cashiers

I used to work a till so I understand that it ain’t the most fun job but for the love of Jaysus could you put the crap in the bag a little faster please? I have one item in my hand and I’m watching the two of yas jabbering on about the weather, “Sure isn’t it great to see”, ” Ach it is aye”, “Did you see the rain though?” “Ach I did surely, it was a complete washout. Sure I left me washin’ out on the line and everything! Had to wash it all over again!!” OMGGGGGGGG.

Children With No Manners

Not to sound like Granny Nora here but this really gripes me. We had a big group of kids visit our offices during the week and I was helping them out on team building exercises which was like trying to control a bunch of banana-crazed monkeys. When I asked the kids to help clean up afterwards, this one fella (about 10 I’d say) just paraded up to the to empty egg carton and booted it across the room and continued to boot everything else he came in to contact with. I didn’t tell him off (his teachers were next to him and didn’t bat an eyelid) but I gave him a quare look that stopped him in his tracks. It was at this moment that I realised I was truly an adult.

‘Strong and stable’ Puns

Enough with the Theresa May jokes – PLEASE! If I hear one more person refer to something as ‘strong and stable’ in a meeting I’m going to feckin’ scream!

Brawling Cats

Now that we’re in the summer and are subjected to the humidity of Louisiana, we have started sleeping with the window open. But this now means that we can hear the neighbourhood cats going mental at all hours. It’s like a mixture of a banshee wailing and a baby wailing which is probably the scariest wailing combination ever. A sound sleep this does not make.

 

And on that note, have a delightful week! xx