Catrice Chocolate Nudes Palette

When choosing a pretty autumnal nail polish last month, I came across this new palette from Catrice. Choc-Let It Be consists of 6 chocolate nude eyeshadows in one palette. Retailing at around €5.50, it’s very affordable so I couldn’t resist picking it up!


I have to admit that eyeshadow isn’t something I buy very often — simply because it’s not something I wear that often. While I rarely leave the house without applying some eyeliner and I love mascara for when I want to feel a little more put-together; eyeshadow only makes an appearance on special occasions. I typically go for a smoky look so I was curious to see how I’d feel about these more neutral colours.


There are six shades within the palette, ranging from the palest white to a deeper cocoa colour. There’s a nice mix of matte and shimmer to choose from and they’re all very buildable. One thing I don’t like about this palette is that it can be a little messy as you can create quite a lot of “dust” during application but really that’s not a deal-breaker for me. These shades are a good option if you want a more natural look for your eyes, whether for daytime or to complement a bolder lip in the evening. They last reasonably well too. All in all, I think this is a very decent buy — especially considering its price, you really can’t go wrong!

Wicked Witch Cupcakes

Last year I went for a chocolate graveyard theme and the year before that it was broken glass on red velvet…I love making cupcakes for Halloween and I couldn’t wait to get started on this year’s batch!


At first, I wasn’t sure what to do but when my American candy haul arrived early last week, I was immediately inspired. I saw the Hershey’s Kisses and realised that they’d be perfect for making witches’ hats! As we’re currently binge-watching Once Upon A Time, I thought of the infamous Wicked Witch and decided to make these with her in mind!



To start, I made regular vanilla cupcakes at home. The frosting is also vanilla and — I have to confess — it’s Betty Crocker. I just added 3-4 drops of green food colouring to achieve the right colour.


For a perfect little topping, you just need a bag of Hershey’s Kisses and a packet of Oreos (plus a little spoonful of that frosting from before!). “Unscrew” an Oreo and use the half without filling to form the base of the hat. Apply the tiniest smudge of frosting to the bottom of a Hershey’s Kiss and stick the sweet to the cookie, gently but firmly. Et voilà — the sweetest and cutest little witch’s hat! They’re almost too cute to eat!


BTW: Keep an eye out for my post on Friday when I’ll be making something that’s entirely different but also inspired by one of my favourite Once Upon A Time characters! ;-)

On Living Together

It’s been almost two years since I moved in with L. Living together for the first time is always made out to be such a big deal and I suppose it is in a way! After all, it’s a fairly serious commitment to agree to share lives together like this and there’s a lot to consider. You have to be able to agree on rent, bills, chores and who does what. It’s something a lot of couples go through and so I thought I’d share my experience so far of living with my other half.


For me, it didn’t feel like a huge step; it just felt like the next step. We had been together 3 years, we both wanted to live in the same area and to be able to spend more time together so it just made sense. We ended up moving in to a two bedroom apartment and — even though we’re now looking to upgrade — we really love living here.

The apartment was a fairly blank and neutral space to start so we’ve been putting our own stamp on it along the way. Our living area definitely has an Avengers theme as L is a huge fan so it’s decorated with little figurines and huge canvas pictures which I’ve surprisingly grown to like. We both use this living area equally but it’s such a small space that I’ve never bothered trying to add my own touches here — instead I’ve completely taken over the spare room! I use it like a dressing room as I get ready there every morning. It’s got a full-length pink mirror, all my make-up, lots of fluffy cushions and teddy bears…so it’s definitely a bit of a girly zone!  L hates strong scents as it can trigger migraines for him so it’s great that I have somewhere to do my nails, spray perfume and light scented candles without affecting him. Even though we do spend most of our time together when we’re both at home, it’s always good to be able to have a little space as well. I really don’t think there’s anything wrong with needing some time to yourself every so often — I’d consider it totally normal and healthy too!

When it comes to housework, it helps that we’re similar in that neither of us are clean freaks but we both like our home to be relatively tidy at the same time. We generally do a big clean-up of the whole apartment together every five-six weeks. I usually tend to do most of the smaller everyday cleaning and tidying just because I think I’m better at it! At the same time, though, if there are any jobs I really don’t want to do (like taking out the bins!), he’ll always volunteer (or at least he’ll oblige if I ask!). I think when living together, it’s so important that everyone does a reasonable share of the housework. We have had a couple of disagreements about it over the past two years but we’ve always been able to come to some sort of compromise.

In the evening, once I’m finished working on my blog and L has his studying and assignments done, we tend to just relax on the couch. We’re total Netflix addicts and we always look for TV shows or films that we both like. We’ll put something on for a couple of hours and also use that time to chat about how our day went and what we’re planning next (we always seem to be planning something!).

Moving in with L is honestly one of the best things I’ve ever done. It’s fun, comfortable and rewarding. I think us living together works for the same reason that our relationship does: we care about and we’re suited to each other. We have similar interests and goals and we’re both willing to make any effort necessary to live happily together. Over the past two years, we’ve grown even closer and we’ve (mostly!) adjusted to each other’s quirks and habits. Moving in with your other half is definitely a big decision but if you’re both ready for it; I think it could be so worth doing! :-)

Lush Honey Bee

I think my last trip to Lush was one of the rare occasions where I left the shop empty-handed! I was hoping to get something from the Halloween collection but nothing really appealed to me. The Lord of Misrule bath bomb wasn’t in stock on the day that I visited and I didn’t have much interest in the matching shower gel; the sparkly pumpkin bubble bar was a bit on the small and too-glittery side and the purple-black shower jelly bat just seemed awkward to use. So instead, I’ve been making do with the regular items I already had stashed at home.


Honey Bee is one of the permanent Lush products but one I had never tried before. A golden yellow with sandy-coloured patches throughout, it’s pretty and a decent size. It’s made with moisturising, soothing and uplifting ingredients like Rhassoul mud, honey, Aloe Vera and orange oil.


As it gets to work, it turns the water a rich yellow colour which is vibrant and long-lasting. It did take quite a while to dissolve although I did notice a cute honeycomb effect inside! I didn’t detect much of a scent (which was a shame as it is something I look for in a bath bomb) but my skin did feel soft and well moisturised afterwards.

Unfortunately Honey Bee left an awful yellow stain all around my white bathtub — and any bath bomb that does this tends to be an instant deal-breaker for me! It’s just annoying and the last thing you want after a lovely relaxing soak is to have to start scrubbing the tub! For the most part, this was fairly good bath bomb but ultimately, it wouldn’t be one I’d purchase again.


Classic Apple Pie

Who can resist a slice of hot apple pie served with a scoop of ice-cream?! It’s such a classic dessert and I decided it was just the thing I needed to make over this Bank Holiday weekend.


I tried a recipe that my fiancé’s grandmother sent us and I tweaked it a little to suit myself. I used a mix of cooking and eating apples — 3 Bramley and 2 Pink Lady — and tossed them in cinnamon sugar for a sweet and warmly spiced flavour. I don’t often make pies so I was really happy with how this one turned out! Sweet and simple, rustic and heartening and so perfect for autumn.


For the pastry:

  • 8 ounces plain flour
  • 4 ounces butter
  • 2 tablespoons of water

Rub the butter in to the flour until it resembles fine breadcrumbs. Add the water and stir to form a firm dough. Turn out on to a lightly floured surface and knead until soft and smooth. Wrap in cling film and set aside in the fridge for now.

For the filling:

  • 1kg apples
  • 4 tablespoons of sugar
  • Half a tablespoon of cinnamon

Peel, core and slice the apples. Stir together the sugar and cinnamon and toss the apples in this mixture. Layer the coated apple slices in a pie dish, piling them slightly higher in the centre.

Putting it all together:

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Roll out the pastry in to a circle large enough to cover the pie dish. Trim the edges and use these strips to line the rim of the dish. To help the strips stick, brush the rim with a little water beforehand. Carefully lift the pastry to cover the apples and gently press it in to the rim to seal it. Make a couple of slashes in the centre of the pastry to allow steam to escape. Lightly brush the entire pie with water and sprinkle with sugar. Place in the pre-heated oven for 35-40 mins. Serve warm or cold — it’s delicious either way!


Homemade PLL “A” Masks

I only started watching Pretty Little Liars earlier this year but I was immediately hooked. I eagerly caught up with all five seasons in time to start watching the sixth as it aired week-by-week on Netflix (see my thoughts on the mid-season finale here!).

The show is full of so much fear and suspense that it provides the best inspiration for Halloween. All fans of PLL will agree that A is one seriously scary character. You never know when to expect a message or an appearance or what the psychopath is going to do next! Every time you catch a glimpse of A in a mask, it’s always a heart-stopping moment!


I decided to try my hand at recreating A’s signature accessory this weekend. I found these blank white masks for 99 cents a-piece at a local discount shop. They were made from some kind of felt-type material so I also picked up a pack of fabric markers — everything altogether cost me less than €6.


I enlisted my fiancé’s help and he drew out the designs in pencil first and then I coloured them in. I’m not particularly artistic but I think these turned out well! If you’re in the mood to do something creative for Halloween; this is such a fun, easy and affordable idea.


Also let’s not forget: easiest costume ever! Throw on a black hoody and maybe some nice leather gloves with one of these masks and you’re basically A! Even if you’re not planning on dressing up this Halloween, these still make pretty cool decorations — if you’re feeling particularly enthusiastic, throw in a doll-house for extra creepy PLL effect!


The Autumn Tag

I came across this autumn tag here and — as you may well know — I love a good tag post! I tag anyone who wants to join in. As always, feel free to leave a link to your own responses in the comments section below!


What is your favourite thing about fall?

There are so many things I love about this time of year — the changing leaves, the crisp air, wrapping up in cosy layers, planning for Halloween, baking all sorts of sweet and stodgy desserts…It’s everything!

Favourite drink?

Warm spiced apple juice — such a perfect combination of autumnal flavours!

Favourite candle?

At the moment, I’m loving a cashmere and vanilla candle from Dunnes Stores. It’s a lovely warm and sweet scent that I keep on my bedside table.

Best lipstick?

I don’t wear lipstick too often but I’ve been applying lots of Bioderma lip balm lately. It’s so moisturising and hydrating, I haven’t gone a day without it this autumn!

Go-to moisturiser?

I’ve been using Trilogy rosapene night cream for over a year now. It’s rich and creamy, sinks in to the skin and smells amazing!

Go-to colour for the eyes?

I’ve always been a fan of smoky eyes. I just think it’s so classic and suits absolutely everyone. Bourjois eyeshadows are my favourite.

Favourite band or singer?

I’m still listening to Ed Sheeran after seeing him in Croke Park over the summer.

Favourite outfit to wear?

Lately I’ve been living in little boots, thick leggings and big cosy jumpers — so comfy!

Autumn treat?

Any dessert with apple and cinnamon!

Favourite place to be?

That will always be home :-)