Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Coconut and Chai Smoothie

Over the last year I have become obsessed with the flavour of chai tea. I'm not a huge fan of teas in general, I find most of them quite bland. But I love the sweet, spicy, almost Christmasy taste of chai, and I've become obsessed with ordering chai lattes as well. I was given T2 loose chai mix for Christmas and I've been working on creating the perfect cup of chai tea... but that's another blog post. Freya has a lovely blog post on how to make a homemade chai tea here as well. On Saturday I was craving a sweet treat, so I decided to create a delicious smoothie. It's the perfect mix of sweet, creamy, and refreshing, and totally satisfies any sugar cravings! Here's how I made it:

Serves 2
1 cup coconut milk
1 large banana
1.5 cups strong chai tea (no milk or sugar)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups ice

1. Brew a strong chai tea and cool
2. Blend all the ingredients, adding ice towards the end
3. Pour into two glasses and top with shredded coconut and cinnamon

Monday, 24 August 2015

I'd Like to Live Here | 06

Isn't this the most calming selection of spaces? I think that bedroom at the top is my dream bedroom at the moment - floorboards, mismatched French linen, lots of light, soothing artwork, and most of all no clutter!

There's a lot of white but I love the touches of natural wood dotted around to warm up the space. There's something really Summery about it but also cosy. And how amazing are those bookshelves - I just want to go and nose around ;) I really like the look of rugs in kitchens on Pinterest, but seriously, I just think about all the food getting spilled/trodden into it... so I like the idea of having those tiles in the centre of the kitchen galley being a lot more practical. What do you think?

Sources: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9

Vote for me in the Amara Interior Blog Awards!

I was so excited to find out recently that I've been nominated for the Amara Interior Blog Awards, for the Best Design Inspiration Blog. That has pretty much the aim of my blog over the years - to inspire. You can find all of my interior posts here. I'm not the most regular blogger so it was so nice to find out that someone found this blog worthy of an award, thank you!

I've so enjoyed blogging over the years, I can't imagine life without this online space! Thank you so much for reading, and if you've enjoyed it, I would love to make it to the shortlist... you can vote for me here. It would mean so much to me! And check out the other wonderful blogs here. Oh and did I mention that by voting, you are automatically entered into the prizedraw to win a 2 day trip to the Amalfi Coast?! 


Monday, 17 August 2015

Finding Paradise in Koh Tao

I will get through my travelling posts eventually, I promise! I loved Cambodia and Northern Thailand but secretly (or not so secretly) I was so looking forward to getting to the islands. To me, beaches are the epitome of relaxation. I love the sun, I love lying in the sand with a book in my hand, and taking regular dips in the sea to cool off.

We started off our journey in Bangkok, where we hopped on an overnight train down to Surat Thani. It was such a fun journey! We started off sitting in seats, tucking into fried rice which we grabbed at the train station before we left. Around 10pm, a man came along the train aisle converting all the seats into bunk beds. The beds were comfortable enough, but I can't say we got much sleep as we were so excited. Two bus rides, a boat ride, and a long walk across the island of Koh Tao (we really under-estimated how far our resort was from the town), we arrived in paradise.

Koh Tao was just so amazingly chilled and beautiful. We couldn't believe our eyes when we stepped out of our cabin and the saw the beach view just metres from the beach. We stayed at the quieter end of the main beach but it was so much more empty and relaxed than I expected. We stayed in a basic but lovely hut at the Palm Leaf resort and I'd highly recommend it. The three days that we stayed here were mainly spent lying on the beach sipping on the amazing mint and lemon shakes and reading our books.

 This man below would come along the beach everyday with a little barbeque and sell hot charred buttery, salty corn on the cob and fresh pineapple that he sliced up for you. They were the BEST snacks and so cheap. 

I thought it might turn into a bit of a party area at night, being on the main beach, but it was still very chilled. The restaurants along the beach brought out big barbecues to serve fresh fish along with potatoes and veg. I hadn't had seafood since that dreaded fish curry in Phnom Penh, but we shared a huge fish platter and it was AMAZING.

Since we were on the island famous for it's diving, I decided that I needed to renew my Padi licence and go scuba diving. Although my instructor was great, I was pretty nervous going without anyone I knew and it had been over a year since I last dived. 10 metres down I realised that there is no Padi signal for I'M FREAKING OUT. Silly huh? But once I relaxed, it was beautiful, despite the visibility not being great that day. I've never seen such stunning coral before.

The day after, Alex went on a fishing trip and brought us back a whopper, which our hotel cooked up for us. It was weird being alone all day for the first time in weeks but really relaxing. I found a lovely French cafe with gluten free pancakes - the dream. Have you been to Kao Tao? I would love to go back! x

Tuesday, 4 August 2015

5 Happy Things

And yes.... most of the things I appreciate in life are food related as per usual. I haven't been blogging much lately as my Aussie boyfriend and I have been pouring a lot of our free time into working on my visa application. It's mind-numbing and stressful but we are so. close. to submitting it! Once it's done and dusted I hope to get back to blogging more than just these little updates.

1/ I have been lusting after some pure linen bed sheets for a couple of years but the price tag is pretty high and let's face it, they're a luxury not an essential. I bit the bullet on Friday with a hefty discount from work and I am in love with them. I love their relaxed look and they're so soft. I went for white as there's nothing as fresh as beautiful, clean white bedlinen, don't you think?

2/ I was craving cookies on Saturday and decided to try a slightly lighter version by making them with chickpeas! I used this recipe, it took me about 15 minutes and they were sooo good.

3/ Walking back from Coles last weekend when I popped out early to get some eggs for breakfast, the sun was shining so I took this slightly longer route home down by the river.

4/ I scored some girlfriend points by watching Alex play football (Aussie rules = so violent!) in the freezing cold on Sunday morning. Afterwards we went out for lunch  at Galleon by the beach in St. Kilda. I had truffled eggs, because TRUFFLES and ended up sharing Alex's chips too. Whoops.

5/ Mulled waaaan with some of my favourite people. We heard about a European Winter Festival happening at a local pub and obviously I had to show my European face. It was a perfect way to spend a Sunday afternoon with fake snow, bratwurst, mulled wine, and yodelling!

What has been putting a smile on your face recently?

Thursday, 30 July 2015

Greek Island Dreaming

Whilst pinning away today (I've rekindled my obsession), I came across this beautiful hotel on the Greek Island of Mykonos that I just had to share for its beautiful design and interior styling. It's situated just down the road from the Paradise Club, but I'm not sure I'd ever want to leave the hotel if I ever stayed here.

I like to think that if I ever owned a holiday home in the Mediterranean (in my dreams...), this would be my inspiration. White washed walls and floors, with rustic natural touches of baskets, wooden tables and stools, patterned tiles, and colourful local textiles. And, of course, a gorgeous hammock in which to lie with a cocktail, staring out at the beautiful sea.

Seriously this is not helping with the fact that I'm very conscious that I'm missing out on European Summer at the moment!

Monday, 27 July 2015

Green Press Adventure

Last weekend, Green Press kindly sent me a box of their amazing organic goodies. Alex and I were feeling like an adventure, and since we had a picnic ready to go, we decided to hit Sherbrooke Forest for a bit of a hike.

I spend approximately 68% of my daily commute drooling over Green Press' Instagram (particularly their Krispy Klean donuts), so I was SO excited to try some of their treats. Green Press is all about making amazing, fresh food from real ingredients, no shortcuts. They have a range of hilariously named cold pressed juices ('Cayenne West', 'Kaling Me Softly' and 'Sesame Treat' being some of my fave names) which all come in beautiful glass bottles. They are full of nutrients, naturally low in sugar, and absolutely delicious.

Sherbrooke Forest is a stunner, it felt so tropical compared to forests back in the UK. It was after a week of heavy rain and the sun was out and everything was cold and damp, with steam rising up from waterlogged fallen branches where they were being soaked by warm sunlight. It was so fun to explore a new part of Australia, which was also so close to home.

First we tried the Beets Don't Kale My Vibe juice, which was divine. Not too sweet but not too earthy, it was perfectly refreshing fuel for our uphill part of the hike! We also drank the 'Holy Water'. If you've ever had a fresh young green coconut before, it's the closest to that in a bottle - naturally sweet and so yum. It took my right back to my Thailand adventures.

I love a good juice, but let's be honest, what drew me to Green Press was their Krispy Klean donuts. I hadn't had a donut in 2 years since gluten free donuts are certainly few and far between. I planned to give one to Alex, but I ended up eating the whole double chocolate donut myself and then later tucking into the vanilla one. I did offer him a bite at least. I love eating treats that taste bad but you know are nutritious and healthy - they are so much more satisfying. No guilt whatsoever! (Except maybe for not sharing...)

At the end of our walk we were suddenly surrounded by beautiful brightly coloured birds (maybe Rosellas?) which weren't afraid to land on us. Alex was definitely a lot more cool, calm, and collected than I was...

After a fun house party that night, I breakfasted in bed with the Choice Chia pudding and Life of the Latte. I've made Chia Puddings before but this one was top notch. I need to try and replicate this layered beauty! I expected Life of the Latte to be a sweet drink but it was just pure coffee and nut milk, which satisfied my new coffee obsession.

Green Press are only open on weekdays (7am - 4pm) in the city of Melbs, but they deliver fresh food around Melbourne during the week. So hit them up! I'm eyeing up their acai bowls next! And more hiking adventures of course... x

*This is not a sponsored post. I just really love this brand and their products. All views are my own* 

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