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Wednesday, 18 November 2015

Food: Gluten-Free Toad-in-the-Hole

The weather has been absolutely foul over the past week and late-autumn in Scotland means that the days are incredibly dark at the moment. At the moment I've been wanting to eat comfort food all the time, and Toad-in-the-Hole seemed an obvious choice after I purchased some delicious pork sausages.

Gluten-Free Toad-in-the-Hole

Tuesday, 17 November 2015

Beauty: My Budget Bath Time Favourites

Bath time is a bit of a luxury for me as I often lack the time to wallow in the bath. I used to spend a bit more on bath time products to indulge myself a bit more, but have realised recently that a higher product price tag doesn't really affect the enjoyment of the act of bathing and for the past few months I've been discovering a few budget bath time options which all work really well for me.

Friday, 13 November 2015

Travel: Bodnant Gardens, North Wales

We visited North Wales a few weeks ago during the October mid-term break and stayed in a lovely cottage on the Bodnant Estate in Conwy. We'd booked this through an agency and had no idea about the beauty of the Bodnant Estate but were in for a treat. After a particularly wet morning on our first day we decided to take a trip to the nearby Bodnant Garden which we realised latterly was world famous. 

Wednesday, 11 November 2015

Food: Aubergine Rarebit

On a recent visit to North Wales, I picked up some delicious Welsh Ale mustard and chutney at a delicatessen and couldn't get enough of the stuff.  The ale imparts a lovely sweetness which really enhanced the flavour. Upon my return I was happy to find an online stockist which pleased me greatly. I've been eating a version of Welsh Rarebit since I was tiny and decided to experiment on the theme for a more substantial lunch-time meal, though my Aubergine Rarebit would be great for brunch too.

Aubergine Rarebit

Tuesday, 10 November 2015

Beauty: Late Autumn Makeup

The weather outside is decidedly dreary at the moment and to counter the effect this has had on my mood, my makeup has taken a tiny step closer to the festive season. Lately, I've been embracing gold eyes and berry lips as I like how this combination perks up my face. As usual, my makeup is applied in record time, so my selection requires little to no blending. Using a darker lipstick always makes it seem as if I've taken more time and care than I actually have - perfect for these dark mornings!

Friday, 6 November 2015

Life: A Healthy and Happy 2015 - Update 10

October was a month devoted to family and as a result the focus was less on me and more on others, which is usually the way, but I felt it even more so this month. The kids were off school for the half-term break which was a bit tiring, but we also managed a wee trip to Wales, which we all enjoyed. This was our first family holiday with the dog and she had a whale of a time chasing after pheasants. After the success of car-trip with the dog, we're definitely planning some more trips with her.

Wednesday, 4 November 2015

Food: Baked Apples with Maple Syrup and Pecans

Our week day desserts are normally pretty simple, with the kids generally opting for fromage frais and fruit. As the nights start drawing in, though, our dinners have generally comprised of comfort food and I've had a fair few requests for warming puddings. My latest offering was a baked apple dessert with maple syrup and pecans, which I served with custard. Empty plates all round and lots of suggestions for variations on the theme.

Baked Apples with Maple Syrup and Pecans

Monday, 2 November 2015

Beauty: Early Gift Suggestions from Sephora - Christmas 2015

I love browsing the Sephora website at this time of year, as they really seem to know how to put together a good gift set for the Holiday season. I inevitably end up buying a few of these which seem too hard to resist and then decide that I'll be keeping them for myself, which inevitably leads to me feeling guilty. My No-Buy First Quarter was a result of doing exactly this last year and to be honest, it was totally worth it!

Wednesday, 14 October 2015

Food: Fragrant Banana Bread

The kids are banana fiends and we always seem to have bananas languishing in our fruit bowl. I usually freeze the bananas that are starting to brown and use them up in smoothies, but of late I've been experimenting with some banana tea-time treats. We've had a few disasters like banana-pancakes sans flour, which no one liked but finally, after some trial and error I  came up with something which we all enjoyed. This fragrant banana bread contains cinnamon and cardamon, which makes it very warming and perfect for autumn.

Wednesday, 7 October 2015

Beauty: Bronze and Berry for the early days of Autumn

The mornings here in Scotland are already very dark and even the kids (and the dog) are already complaining about being woken too early. My makeup application is now pretty low on my list of priorities in the morning as I eke out an extra 20 minutes in bed in the morning. I rarely wear no makeup, as I like the me-time putting on some makeup gives me. I also find that I feel much better when I'm taking care of myself.