Monday, 18 August 2014

Sweet Potatoes

Sweet potatoes are a big rediscovery for me in recent weeks, and I couldn’t be happier about this! My first and only memory of them up until now was when my Mum cooked them for a family meal when I was around 7, and I found them so sickly that I couldn’t finish them and as a result my little baby brain turned against them. Then, as I was thinking of more things to incorporate into our weekly food shop that are clean and tasty ingredients, I suddenly realised that I was seeing a lot of sweet potato in recipes, and featured on blogs that I admired. I decided to give them a try again and was a little hesitant just because I really wanted to like them! And that I certainly did. I genuinely eat them every day at the moment…. Oops.
Sweet potatoes have a large amount of benefits for your health and they’re a type of complex carb which means their natural sugars are slowly released into the bloodstream, helping to ensure a balanced and regular source of energy.
My favourite way to eat sweet potatoes is by making them into fries (ohhh, how american) because they are SO easy to make and you can eat them alone or with other things. My ‘recipe’ for sweet potato fries is literally… 
Firstly, put the oven on 200C fan so it will be ready for your fries by the time you’ve cut them. Then take a tablespoon of cold pressed virgin coconut oil onto a baking tray and put it into the oven whether you’ve just put it on or not as it will still melt. Take the tray out once it’s turned into a liquid. Cut as many sweet potatoes as you want/need for your meal in half, then into strips, then into finer strips if needed. I tend to cut a medium sized one for one portion for myself (I have a massive appetite and know it’s a huge portion!). Put the fries onto the tray and turn them over until they have a nice coating of oil on each side of them. Sprinkle some sea salt over them and pop in the oven for 20-25 minutes (the longer the sweeter they get)! Simples. Delicious, sweet food without the guilt.
They are SO versatile, you can use them in any type of meal as well as make puddings with them! See Deliciously Ella’s Sweet Potato Brownies
By now I hope you love sweet potatoes as much as I do. :)

Have a nice day! x

Thursday, 17 July 2014

Health Food Shop Purchases!

When I came across a health food shop in a little town I was strolling around last Friday, I got worryingly excited.. I think someone needs to get out more! Haha.. 
As you will know I’ve gone on a bit of a health kick recently so I already had my mind set on some super foods I wanted to get and give a go, however I hadn’t written a list. Health food shops tend to be pretty expensive so it’s just as well I hadn’t really! There’s something about these shops that just make me think I could spend all day just looking around, reading about what everything does to benefit you and your body (I know this isn’t the case for everyone!), and I ended up picking up a few things I wanted to share with you..

Spirulina is something I’ve heard a LOT about, but mostly in passing on blogs such as Madeleine Shaw and Millie Mackintosh. It’s a blue-green algae that’s cultivated sustainably in open air fresh water ponds. It’s a planet friendly source of protein, essential amino acids and minerals. It says on the pack the recommended daily intake is about 10-15 grams daily, so I’ve been putting 10 grams into my green juices (of which I drink half of daily). It makes them look dark green and I feel like I’m doing something good! So far, I’m enjoying putting something this nutty looking into my juices!
I discovered cashew butter in this shop. Up until now I’ve LOVED almond butter, but have ran out of it for a few weeks now and didn’t realise how much I missed it. I decided to give this a try and I actually find them quite similar. I really like the taste but it’s definitely an acquired one. I have it as a snack with an apple or put a teaspoon into juices!
The next thing I bought was a pack of Green Tea with Peppermint. Now I’m not the biggest fan of green tea on its own although I will drink it purely for the health benefits. I dislike the tobacco ish aftertaste (blergh) and the taste just isn’t my thing. I love peppermint tea so I thought it might make it a little more bearable. I have to say I am pleasantly surprised as I actually really like it now! The peppermint takes the edge off and I don’t get the yucky aftertaste anymore, just a refreshing minty taste instead. Bonus points for this find!
Last but deeeeefinitely not least, I bought 200g of Chia Seeds. Why I note how heavy my little purchase was you might ask?! BECAUSE IT’S SO DARN EXPENSIVE!! This little bag cost £4.50 - insert distressed shocked emoji here. That might sound dramatic but the packet these little seeds came in basically only just covered my palm. But, as with the almond butter, I had realised how much I missed chia seeds and you can say it came at a hefty price. However, these little bundles of expensive joy bring an almighty list of health benefits to the table.. Check this article to prevent this post becoming an article! .. pretty impressive, no?

So there you have my mini health food haul! Do you have any of these things in your cupboards and if so, how to you use them?

Have a wicked day!!

Mari x

Understated Glitter Manicure

I thought I’d get back into the swing of blogging with an easy little read today.. Which isn’t much of a read at all but instead a mini-guide so as to how I created this pretty manicure. I posted a picture of it on Instagram a week ago and it got a lot of attention and positive comments.. So here goes!

- My favourite base coat to use is the Leighton Denny Undercover Base Coat. This is honestly an amazing base and it's lasted me AGES! You can wear it on its own to make your nails look pinker and the tips look whiter too! When using it as a base for colour I always wait for it to go a slightly sheeny matte before applying the first coat.
- The polish I used for the base of this look was the L’Oreal Colour Riche Nail Laquerin Rose Paradis - shade 201. It took around 2-3 coats of this to get the opaque effect I wanted (it sounds like a lot but if you have the time it’s so worth it).
- Then as the finishing touch I used a Claire’s Glitter Polish on the tips which I adore because the glitter is like little strands which is something a bit different and more sophisticated (if you can stretch to that for glitter!) than other types.
- I sealed all of this in place with my Rimmel Finishing Touch Ultra Shine Top Coat - this is the best top coat and such a good price! It honestly looks like a gel manicure when this is done properly, and doesn't chip.

To keep this manicure long lasting and shiny, make sure you put a coat of the top coat every 3 days or so!

Let me know your thoughts on this mani and tag me on instagram if you recreate it!

Mari x

Tuesday, 8 July 2014

Social Media Update

I have felt like this post has been long overdue as nobody seems to know where else to find me as I never see familiar names on my accounts! So here goes..
I have some watercolour icons to the right of my page which are clickable links that will direct you to my Twitter, Pinterest, Bloglovin' and Instagram. I've only just set up my Instagram and Pinterest so bear with me! I hope you like them and I'll see you there :)


Wednesday, 2 July 2014

The Skincare Product You NEED For Spots - La Roche Posay Effaclar Duo [+]

Even when I’m being really healthy and am drinking lots of water and working out, I still get a spot from time to time. And that goes without saying when I go a little off track and have loads of treats that I get a lot. Before now I’d usually wait it out and not really do anything about the spots, they weren’t great no, but I never saw them as a big deal. Then I heard good things about the Origins Super Spot Remover and bought it. I got mediocre results (nothing compared to how some people were raving).. THEN I saw Ruth Crilly from A Model Recommends on a YouTube ad talking about La Roche Posay’s Effaclar Duo +. I ticked the box to get a sample in the post and the rest is history. All I do is dot it on my spots and you instantly feel it tingle if it’s a real nasty one. I usually do this in the evening because it tends to roll off if you put makeup over it. It doesn’t dry up the spot (as that isn’t possible anyway) but the skin around the spots doesn’t get dry and it just exfoliates the skin. I wouldn’t use it as an all over moisturiser and for that reason the tube I bought for £15.50 has already lasted a good few months and is still showing NO signs of running out. It is truly the best spot treatment I think that is on the market and I haven’t even tried that many! It sorts them out really quickly without any mess.

Have you ever tried La Roche Posay’s Effaclar Duo? Thanks for reading! x

Tuesday, 3 June 2014

Healthy Mango Pancakes - Eat Clean

Hiiiiii! Remember me?
Another month since my last 'I'm back' blog post and I completely messed up when I didn't write any more after! Anyway, I'm hoping to write a lot more regularly as of now and would like to say thank you for being patient little readers! I hope you're having a great day.
I wanted to share this delicious pancake recipe which I found on one of my favourite healthy living bloggers, Deliciously Ella. Her Website is amazing and so interesting, along with her Instagram which is just so beautiful I struggle not to go out and buy every single ingredient she photographs!
So, of course, the recipe is on her website but just for the practicality of reading this post I'll give you the notes.

Makes - 25 small pancakes

2 ripe bananas (270g)
4 slices of mango (180g)
1 cup of blueberries (150g)
1 and 1/2 cup of oats (240g)
3 tablespoons of nut butter (I used almond butter)
coconut oil for greasing the pan (I used butter oops)
2 cups of water
a pinch of salt
Additional demerara, bananas and strawberries (my personal fave toppings <3)

I have a Nutribullet so all I did was whizz up all of the above ingredients except for the butter and it was ready in 2 minutes. If you don't have one, all you need is a food processor or something that will mix it all up into a liquidy mix. After this, just leave the fairly thick mix to stand for a few minutes just so the oats soak up some of the liquid and the mix holds together better, therefore taking less time to cook the pancakes and there being less chance of any spillage on the pan!
Now heat up the pan until it's hot enough, put a little butter (I have coconut oil but I don't like coconuts, I use it for something else I will be doing a post on) to ensure there is no stickiness going on, then take a tablespoon of the mix for each pancake. I could fit around 4 max pancakes in at the same time in my fairly big pan. Make sure you leave them to cook on that side for 2 minutes, this bit is very important otherwise the pancakes will just mess up as the mix is quite delicate. Do the same for the other side and there you have it! It does take a little while to perfect but it is so worth it.
I used some additional banana and strawberries and a sprinkle of demerara (unrefined cane sugar) just to spice it up a bit. These are so so good and actually when you think about it, much tastier than average pancakes. I hope you enjoy them!

Thanks for reading everyone! x

Thursday, 1 May 2014

Ciate Amazing Gracie Mani

Hi guys!
I have to say I'm sorry that I haven't posted for such a long while, it's been over a month! It's been really hectic recently as Easter all of my friends were all together again after everyone has gone to Uni and have done all varying things! Since we last spoke, I passed my driving test (YAAAAAAAY!! I have a new found freedom :)) and have been busy catching up and going out with my besties. It's been lovely, but I'm really excited to be back on the blog and doing something cool to entertain myself and my creative streak :).
ANYWAY, I thought I'd make my first post after a little break quite a light post. I have been LOVING this nail polish so much recently. I am, of course, always partial to a neutral. This shade is a pastel pink, so it combines neutral and pastel perfectly. I got this in my Ciate Mini Mani Month and have had to tip it upside down upon application now as it is running veeeery thin. Time to purchase a full size! This goes with every look you can think of, and I'm finding it very difficult to stray to a different colour haha!!

Lots of love,

Mari x