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Posts from January 2015.

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Back to Basics.

January 25th  •  Posted in Beauty

Back to Basics
Back to Basics

My skin was being very itchy and nasty lately over my whole body. It was going on since a long while, months, years, and it seems something chronicle and I couldn’t really see an end to it any time soon. So now I’m making the switch to all natural basic skincare (and haircare too) to see how it goes! I can’t deny the definitive push was given to me while reading this post by Freya; I started thinking: “why am I still thinking oils can only be bad for oily skins?” and decided to finally give the whole coconut-oil-only thing a whirl. I’m doing it since only a few days, but so far so good and my skin is reacting wonderfully, not even near to my most positive expectations! Now every time I take a shower, I firstly wash my hair with my favourite shampoo from Lush, then I wash my body with nothing more than natural shower gels or, even better, castile soap (any harsh bath sponge is strictly forbidden) and then I cleanse my face with pure virgin organic coconut oil and nothing else! If I feel like I need a bit of exfoliation I only commit myself to my beloved Let The Good Times Roll (cleanser + exfoliator in one means I can really keep my skincare stash to the minimal!). A bit extreme? I know, but so far I’ve seen the best results I was hoping to see since a while!

Are you planning to go natural with your skincare products any time soon? Let me know if you have some natural gems one with oily skin and bad dry patches needs to know about! x


Three healthy-ish ways with peanut butter.

January 23rd  •  Posted in Recipe

The truth about New Year resolutions is that they’re easy to list down, less easy to tick off. Especially if you have a big chocolate craving going on at every hour of the day. But I’m working on it! A few weeks back I in fact tweeted about having a big jar of peanut butter that needed to go and looking for recipes to finish it up, in particular ones that involved lots of sugar and chocolate. Now, I promise I’ll try the delicious and mouth watering brownies that were linked to me, but since we’re all trying to eat healthier and get fit, I thought it was fair to come up with a few healthy-ish peanut butter recipes instead and share them with you! I’m pretty proud of myself for having been able to limit the amount of sugar involved, mostly avoid chocolate, and use healthier ingredients than what I usually do, and also because all of these three recipes turned out to be super delicious anyway.

Also, the one thing that makes these recipes quite healthy-ish is that I used a no sugar, organic, virgin peanut butter. If yours has sugar in it, no problem, just try to limit the amount of sweetener (usually honey) involved for every recipe! Enjoy!

1 // Almonds, Walnuts, Peanut Butter Granola
Three healthy-ish ways with peanut butter
Three healthy-ish ways with peanut butter
Three healthy-ish ways with peanut butter
Three healthy-ish ways with peanut butter
Three healthy-ish ways with peanut butter

Ingredients ::
2 1/2 tbsp honey
2 tbsp peanut butter
1 tbps brown sugar
100g  oat bran
100g wheat bran
20g peeled almonds + walnuts

1 :: Preheat the oven to 200°C.

2 :: Place the peeled almonds and walnuts into a small frying pan and place it onto a very low heat for 5 to 10 minutes, until the nuts are toasted and smells very nutty. Place the nuts in a clean towel and, using a rolling pin, crack the nuts roughly.

3 :: In a microwaves safe little bowl mix together the honey, the peanut butter and the sugar, then put it in the microwaves for 30/60 seconds, just to allow all the ingredients to melt down and create a liquid mixture.

4 :: In a big bowl mix together the oat and wheat brans, the toasted almonds and walnuts and the honey + peanut butter mixture. Use a spoon or your hands to stir well and create a crumbling mixture.

5 :: Line a baking tin with parchment paper and place the granola in it, spreading it out as much as possible on the tin. Bake in preheated oven for 10/12 minutes, making sure to give the granola a stir half way through.

6 :: Remove from oven and leave it to cool in its baking tin for 20 minutes. Once cooled down it will be crunchy and delicious! Probably the best granola I’ve ever made so far!

7 :: Store it into a big jar and serve as desired: with yogurts, milk, or simply by its own!

2 // Banana, Peanut Butter, Chocolate Healthy Smoothie
Three healthy-ish ways with peanut butter
Three healthy-ish ways with peanut butter
Three healthy-ish ways with peanut butter
Three healthy-ish ways with peanut butter

Serves: 1 | Ingredients ::
150 ml chocolate soy milk
1 banana
1 tbps peanut butter
1 tbps honey

1 :: Cut the banana roughly then pour it into an electric blender together with the chocolate soy milk, peanut butter and honey. Blend away until smooth!

2 :: Serve in a glass or mason jar, top with oat bran and a paper straw and enjoy!

If you don’t have the chocolate soy milk but only classic soy milk, you can just add a bit of cocoa powder to add a chocolate-y flavour to it, or you can go for any other non-dairy or dairy milk of your choice! If you add cocoa powder, you might want to consider adding a bit more honey.

3 // Peanut Butter + Oat Energy Bars
Three healthy-ish ways with peanut butter
Three healthy-ish ways with peanut butter
Three healthy-ish ways with peanut butter

6 Energy Bars | Ingredients ::
10 tbps oat bran
4 tbps wheat bran
120 ml milk
1 tbps peanut butter
1 tbps brown sugar

1 :: Preheat the oven to 200°C.

2 :: Mix together the brans in a large bowl, then add the milk a tablespoon at a time and stir in the meanwhile, then add the peanut butter (melt it in the microwaves if too solid) and brown sugar and stir well until all the ingredients are well incorporated.

3 :: Once obtained a wet and sticky mixture, line a small loaf pan with parchment paper, then pour in your oat mixture and use a spoon or your hands to flatten it down and create a quite thick big bar.

4 :: Bake in the preheated oven for 10 minutes, then remove from oven and let it cool down completely for at least 20 minutes.

5 :: Remove from the loaf pan and cut the big bar into six smaller bars. They’ll be quite soft and deliciously gooey, enjoy!

Three healthy-ish ways with peanut butter
Three healthy-ish ways with peanut butter
Believe it or not, I still have some peanut butter left that needs to go quickly, so please share your favourite healthy or not peanut butter recipes and I’ll make sure to give them a try! And as usual, let me know if you try one of these recipes and tweet me a picture if you do! x

Etsy Favourite Finds!

January 21st  •  Posted in Lifestyle

It’s no secret I have a weakness for a good old online shopping session (more often than it’s considered healthy, I may add), but you might not know my favourite place to shop online is, no doubts, Etsy. When I think of it, I think of thousand or more pair of hands working at something of huge value in the same very moment and building objects, art, products, that are truly unique and special. You can buy handmade elsewhere, but Etsy is the place where to go and support little crafters and artists that really need the support you can give them with a simple purchase or a little feedback. So to share the love for handmade, I will start today suggesting my favourite Etsy shops, with the only aim to introduce you to some local (or not) artisans that really deserve a mention or two!

When buying on Etsy there’re no boundaries, you can shop from artisans from all over the world, but sometimes the shipping cost or tax fee could be a limit, so I generally tend to shop from inside the EU, but, as you’ll see, sometimes oversea shops can definitely be worth the effort, the waiting and the extra pounds spent for shipping!

Etsy Favourite Finds.

Pai and pear
Isabel is a Madrid based talented Irish illustrator that creates the cutest notebooks, fabrics, stickers, prints using her own illustrations. Her shop is jam-packed with adorable stationery pieces, home and paper goods, prints and phone cases, and her unique illustration style is the sweetest thing, really! Despite all her items are handmade and unique, everything is really affordable, which means you really need to treat yourself to something from her shop at some point, no excuses!

I boughtMagnet Note Pad / Stickers (Sold out).

Etsy Favourite Finds.

Il Gatto Goloso
Beside looking for EU based shops, I definitely also try to support national artisans too, and Claudia is in fact a super talented Italian food stylist that sells everything food lovers would adore to own to style and decorate their food! From cute paper goods, to colourful paper straws and adorable muffin cups, washi tape, tea cloths, gift tags and all kinds of twine, you can definitely find anything you’ll need to style and take a good food picture in her shop! She is such a lovely girl too, and really cares about your order – she also added some cute labels and a bit of extra twine to my parcel which were very appreciated!

I boughtChevron Paper Bags / Stripe Paper Bags / Jar Tags.

Etsy Favourite Finds.

Lenny Mud
If you’re looking for something truly unique and different, you can’t go wrong with Lenny Mud. ‘Lenny’ creates a large variety of objects with clay and has really beautiful and innovative design skills; her shop is full of beautiful mugs, teapots, bowls, ornaments that would be perfect gifts for him & her for any occasion, really. In fact my adorable panda mug was a well appreciated gift from my boyfriend! If you’re not USA based, be prepared to spend a bit extra pounds for shipping, but I’ll tell you this, all her products are totally and completely worth it!

He boughtPanda Cookie Dunk Mug.

If you like my suggestions, you might want to check out my other Etsy favourites!
Share the love for your favourite Etsy shops in the comments! I’d love to discover new talents. x