Monday Mix and Match

Happy Monday Tuesday everyone! Slightly late with this week’s favourites but what with the Easter weekend and the gloriously sunny bank holiday Monday, this is technically the first day of the week, isn’t it? Excuses aside, I hope everyone had a lovely, relaxing and chocolate filled weekend – I know I certainly stuffed myself to bursting with eggs (a fact I was majorly paying for at boot camp this evening…#shweatin)

This week, my favourites include an affordable skincare update, a healthy midweek dinner recipe and even a snazzy outfit change for my phone! I hope you enjoy!

Beauty

Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water for Combination and Sensitive Skin

Micellar waters are, without doubt, thee trendiest way to clean your face at the moment. Brought into the spotlight by the infamously unattainable Bioderma version and used by every make-up artist and beauty buff worth their salt, practically all of the high-street brands hav now released their own version. This is definitely good news for those of us who don’t manage regular visits to Paris for a Bioderma fix, and even better, there are varieties to suit every budget.

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Recipe: Spicy Chilli, Fajita Bowl and Easy Homemade Guacamole

I’m a traitor to my Irish heritage – I’m not a fan of hearty stews or coddle, and don’t even talk to me about potatoes and cabbage! My foodie heart lies further afield – in Italy, Asia and of course, Mexico! Thus, this tasty chilli, my mam’s specialty I might add, is now a staple dinner in my own home and recently I decided to mix it up by serving in this fajita bowl with a little of my favourite accompaniment, homemade guacamole. this so simple to make and always something to look forward to. The bonus is it’s a one pot recipe and easily adjustable to your taste. You can add more or less spice to suit yourself, load it up with your choice of veggies and it goes just as well with some rice or quinoa! This is also perfect to make in bulk to freeze or reheat the next evening for round two (is there any better feeling than coming home to a pre-made dinner?). So here is my recipe for this tasty midweek dinner..

Easy Chilli recipe with Fajita Bowl and Homemade GuacamoleSpicy Chilli Con Carne in a Fajita Bowl served with Homemade Guacamole

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Monday Mix and Match

Ok lads, I have been officially succumbed to Christmas fever and there ain’t no going back! The tree is up, Wham! are my favourite band again and the presents are wrapped in a Pinterest worthy fashion…well, the present is wrapped! Last minute panic shopping is my festive modus operandi – I am every bit that cliché husband type on Christmas Eve! That being said, I have been fully enveloped by the spirit and am so excited to go gift shopping. To get everyone in the mood I might replace my Mix and Match post for the next two weeks with some gift guides and festive DIY posts. For now anyway, here’s my weekly favourites post, featuring a fabulous Christmas candle, my go-to eyeshadow palette and a most delicious and easy cake recipe to keep you jolly this week!

Interiors

Paddy Wax Pomegranate and Spruce Scented Candle - AvocaPaddy Wax Pomegranate and Spruce CandleThis being me and my boyfriend’s first Christmas living together, we are definitely both missing our mammies’ lovely cosy, Christmas-ified homes – thankfully they have both been very generous and supplied us with a bauble or two to make our place just as homely. Of course though, if there’s an opportunity to go shopping, I’m am there! And first priority was to get my house smelling like a Christmas wonderland – and sure the boyf was only too delighted to accompany me on a scented candle hunt*… (*not entirely true). Luckily there was a yummy breakfast in it for him, when I found the perfect scent in the form of this Paddy Wax Pomegranate and Spruce scented candle during a trip to Avoca in Malahide Castle. I am so particular about smell and find Christmas scents in particular can be overly sweet, artificial, and generally very overpowering and headache-inducing. Paddy Wax candles caught my eye because of the beautiful packaging – I am nothing if not shallow! But thankfully, the scents, both regular and Christmas, are equally as divine as the coloured, cut glass that encase them. The Pomegranate and Spruce is fresh, light with the perfect amount of that familiar spicy and warm Christmas smell. It’s already made such a difference to making a house a home with the added bonus that once the candle has burnt out, you can pop a tealight on the jar to make a beautiful Christmas votive – Bob’s your uncle, Mary’s your aunt! This candle retails at €12.95 and can be purchased in in Avoca stores and online.

Beauty

Urban Decay Naked Basics Palette Review 2Urban Decay Palette - Naked Basics

Generally I’m not one for a matte shadow – way to hard to blend, particularly when in a hurry and can make the eye look dead and sunken when applied without care. However, I would always make an exception for Urban Decay, more specifically the Naked Basics Palette. Ironically, this was actually a Christmas present last year that has only found its way into my make-up routine now. Just me, or does anyone else get onto the habit of using one palette for ages and forgetting they own seventeen others? Like a lot of people, I’m a huge fan of the Naked Palettes by Urban Decay and own both palette number 1 and 2. The basics palette is a collection of pared down, neutral and matte shades in one handy little compact, handy mirror included. Like most Urban Decay shadows, they are blendable with unrivaled colour payoff and you can actually use all off them (dear make-up companies – PLEASE stop putting green shadow in your palettes). Having been on a number of trips away recently, I can honestly say this is the one palette that will cover all your bases – it’s so compact and you have so many options for day to night eye make-up. The black is a particular highlight, as I have found it very difficult to get any intensity from such a shadow before now. I would definitely recommend popping this is the stocking of someone you love… and sure, if that person happens to be yourself, I wouldn’t blame you at all!

Food

Rocky Road Cake Birthday Cake

Right, so duh, you may have gathered by now that I love Christmas! I love every single thing about it… except it’s accompanying cake. Now, I’m not one to blaspheme the cake gods but my goodness, those fruity, booze soaked puds are (surprisingly) not my thang. If they don’t tickle your tinsel either, dispense with tradition and try your hand at this easy peasy, rocky road cake. Baked for a very special someone’s 25th birthday as you can see, I could envision this going down a treat over the holidays too. It was incredibly tasty, with all the birthday boy’s favourite things in – marshmallow, honeycomb, and biscuit. This cake is foolproof and completely adaptable to whatever your sweet tooth desires too. The base recipe is:

  • 250g of unsalted butter (plus extra to grease the tin)
  • 100g of Golden Syrup
  • 400g Chocolate (70% cocoa gives a beautiful rich chocolatey taste, but maybe go a tad lower for non-dark chocolate lovers as it retains it’s intensity even with the addition of the butter and golden syrup)

Melt all of the above together then add, about 150g of digestive biscuits, a pack of marshmallows, and well anything else you fancy really. Honeycomb, Mars bar, nuts, fruit, coconut, meringue, anything goes! When mixed, I poured everything into a greased, 9” spring form tin and allowed to set overnight, although it would be fully hardened within about two hours. After that, decorate with some melted chocolate and some crushed flake, and if you’re feeling crafty you can create similar toppers to mine with some pipe cleaners and cocktail sticks…just don’t set them on fire when lighting the candles!! Not that that’s what happened to me…*cough*…

Are we officially allowed to say Merry Christmas now? Sure sod it, Merry Christmas guys, and thanks for reading! 🙂

Until next time! xx

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