Living the lagom lifestyle

I have a confession to make. Even though over 20 books were written about hygge in the last few years, I never got the Danish hygge buzz. While I’m as guilty as the next person of wanting to inject some of that effortlessly cool Scandinavian style into my life, hygge seemed a step too far into twee territory for my liking.

If you somehow missed the hygge train, let me fill you in. Lifestyle trend hygge has been described as the Danish secret to happiness. Put simply, hygge is that warm cosy feeling. Think warm blankets, candlelight, hot chocolate. It’s that Christmas feeling all year long.

I love the idea of that cosy vibe but the older I get, the more I appreciate using what I’ve got, as opposed to the pursuit of more, and that’s why when I heard about another buzz-worthy lifestyle trend that’s about less is more, I sat up and paid attention. Say hello to Swedish lagom. Continue reading “Living the lagom lifestyle”

How to quit caffeine and not lose your mind

For the fourth time in my life, I’m trying to cut out caffeine and all I can say is hold me. Somebody. Anybody. The headaches, the tiredness, feeling so irritable you are this close to giving Michael Douglas in Falling Down a run for his money. The joys of caffeine withdrawal.

So, why am I doing this to myself? As well as being a sucker for self-punishment, it’s that time of year when we are all vowing to be a bit healthier, to drink more water and turn ourselves into Gisele, all within the space of January, and I’m as guilty of this as the next person. Also, as you may recall from my golden milk recipe post, coffee has been exacerbating my anxiety in the last year or so. Even though I used to drink up to 6 cups a day – insert beating heart emoji – these days all it takes is that second cup and my heart is aflutter…and not in a good way.

Continue reading “How to quit caffeine and not lose your mind”

Baked sweet potato bean burgers recipe

How much sweet potato is TOO much sweet potato? That’s one of life’s big questions, really. Even though I’m this close to going a shade of oompa loompa with all the beta carotene, I’m unapologetic about my sweet potato obsession and I’m always looking for new ways to eat it.

If you’re not a sweet potato addict (explain yourself!) and you’re wondering why sweet potatoes are so good for you, rest assured – these starchy root vegetables are a nutritional rock star. Rich in antioxidants, high in fibre and bursting with vitamins and minerals – these are just a few of the health benefits of sweet potatoes.

Whether you’re a committed vegan or just taking part in Veganuary and you’re looking for a quick and easy, nutritious vegan recipe, these baked sweet potato burgers will not only give you another excuse to stock up on sweet potatoes but they’ll really hit the spot. You could also make this recipe into small falafel style bites, if you fancy a savoury vegan snack. Continue reading “Baked sweet potato bean burgers recipe”

Wellness hacks for the January blues

January always feels to me like cracking open a new notebook and feeling the nervous possibilities of that crisp blank page. Whether you’ve got your whole year planned out ahead of you or you’re gonna fly by the seat of your pants, for many of us, January’s newness can be a blessing and a curse, with the unknown creating a palpable sense of panic. There’s also the dreary weather, dark mornings and darker evenings to contend with. After the buzz of Christmas and New Year’s Eve, January just can’t compete, can it? No wonder we’re all swamped in the January blues.

In my opinion, this makes January the perfect time to look after yourself, experiment with wellness and make self-care a real priority. And no, I’m not talking about food fads, drop a dress size diets or dangerous juice cleanses – I’m talking about wellness activities that’ll snap you out of the January blues and that you can practice throughout 2018. Continue reading “Wellness hacks for the January blues”

5 lessons I learnt in 2017

I really should’ve called this blog ‘Dear Diary’, shouldn’t I? It’s that time of year when we start to look back and make all kinds of fancy resolutions to hopefully make the next 12 months better than the last 12, and maybe even become shiny new versions of ourselves.

Taylor Swift aside, the general consensus is that 2017 was a shit show but, in an effort to be more positive, I learnt a lot this year. My wellness obsession swelled to new heights and led me to spend a lot more time delving into self-care and self-help, spaces I previously scoffed at. There’s no book, blog post or podcast which changed my mind about these things – maybe it’s just part of getting older – but this year I’ve spent more time considering my own choices, looking at why I and those around me do what we do and, as twee as this sounds, generally seeking to be a bit more understanding.

Here’s 5 of the big lessons I learnt and started to apply in my life in 2017 and a few podcast recommendations thrown in for good measure:

Continue reading “5 lessons I learnt in 2017”

4 ingredient date and cashew energy balls recipe for when you’re too busy to bake

Dear reader, please forgive me. I fully intended to post a round-up of easy vegan snack recipes for anyone who is looking for healthy snacks for Christmas but I just haven’t gotten around to it, thanks to the unpredictability of being a freelance writer. This weekend I managed to escape into the kitchen for half an hour, listen to a podcast (Leah Remini discussing Scientology on Ru Paul: What’s the Tee? – I 100% recommend it) and make these unbelievably easy date and cashew nut energy balls.

Similar to my recipe for coconut and cashew cookies, these balls are vegan, you only need 4 ingredients and there’s no baking required so, even if you’re time-strapped or not exactly Nigella in the kitchen, you’ll be able to make them. So, if you’re looking for a really delicious but healthy snack before you overindulge over the festive season, give these date, cashew and coconut energy balls a go. Continue reading “4 ingredient date and cashew energy balls recipe for when you’re too busy to bake”

Christmas events in Dublin

To celebrate the most wonderful time of the year, there’s Christmas events happening all across Dublin this month, from carol concerts to craft markets and free festivals.

Whether you’re visiting Dublin in December or you live in the city and you’re not sure what’s happening near you this Christmas, look no further – here’s a round-up of fun events in Dublin for Christmas 2017, including a few free and family-friendly options if you’ve got kids in tow.

Last week I did a round-up of non-Christmassy things to do in Dublin in December so, if you’ve had your fill of baubles and lights already, check it out.

Continue reading “Christmas events in Dublin”

5 Things to do in Dublin this December

Can you believe it’s December? I’m in shock. I used to be more of a Grinch about the festive season but the older I get, the more I love this time of year – yes, even the dark evenings. I particularly love Christmas in Dublin. Sure, it’s no Fifth Avenue but I love the Christmas lights on Grafton Street, the cosy open fireplaces in bars and the excuse to wear a ridiculous amount of layers and give up on your appearance. More than anything, I love counting down to going home for Christmas and the feeling of wrapping up everything I need to do before the festive season really begins.

With this in mind, I wanted to do quick post about 5 things to do in Dublin in December which is really a list of 5 things I myself hope to pack in this month. Some are brand new and others are new-ish but I just haven’t gotten around to checking them out. Next week I’ll do a roundup of Christmas events in Dublin so I’ve skipped really festive events.  Continue reading “5 Things to do in Dublin this December”

Podcast recommendations: Career and Business Podcasts for Women

I’m obsessed with hearing people’s stories. Not how they met their husbands (although, if it’s weird and wonderful, I’m all ears), more how they found what they’re good at, their huge mistakes and big breaks. As I mentioned before, I’m a big podcast fiend and, while most of my choices are pop culture podcasts, I absolutely devour any conversation with a successful woman talking about how she carved her career path.

A buttoned-up, businessy podcast would bore me to tears but I absolutely can’t get enough of chats with crazily successful women about their trials, tribulations and lessons learnt. If you’re too hard on yourself (which I am definitely guilty of) it’s amazing to hear that talented, on-top-of-their-game women experience self-doubt too and that it’s not plain sailing for anyone (despite what you see on social media). As well as giving me this fix of reassurance, I pick up a lot of useful tips from these conversations, from how to ask for a raise to digital marketing hacks.

My list of favourite podcasts is always growing but these are my current favourite business and career-oriented podcasts for women: Continue reading “Podcast recommendations: Career and Business Podcasts for Women”