Friday, 11 September 2015

Home Scents

Yankee Candle Clean Cotton Decor Diffuser £21.99

A gorgeous smelling home is just so comforting to me. Candles, diffusers, oils or wax tarts, I've got them all! So I thought I'd run through some of my favourites and give you some ideas if you're not a candle/diffuser obsessive like me! 

1. Candles

I hold my hands up, I'm a candle addict. Not so much over summer (that's diffuser or wax tart territory), but as soon as it starts to get darker in the evenings, boom, those scented candles are out and lit faster than you can say yankee candle. 
For a start, they give off a romantic glow whether you'e having a cosy date night in, friends over to watch a movie or having your very own pamper night (and wine...don't forget the wine), they give a gorgeous glow. Secondly, they smell amazing, if you pick the right candles. I used to be a sucker for a cheap Ikea or Matalan scented candle but spend those extra pennies and the scent you'll get will last the whole burn, not just the first time. 

I always ask for candles for Christmas or birthdays and these are just some of the gems I've either used before or have waiting to use this winter:

Lily-Flame Fairy Dust - £9 or they do jars for £12 sweet smelling and oh so pretty!
The White Company Pomegranate - £20 and a double for Jo Malone Pomegranate Noir at less than half the price. Rich but not overpowering.
Jo Malone Wild Fig & Cassis- £42 I got this as a gorgeous gift and it was one I found hard to light because Jo Malone is always so beautifully packaged (and expensive!) but the scents are out of this world and travel through the whole house.
Yankee Candle Fireside Treats - £21.99 but you get a lot of candle for your money with up to 150hrs or burn time and all of their candles smell good enough to eat.

2. Diffusers

Diffusers are a great way to get a great scent with ease, and especially great if you have small children and don't want candles lit. Yankee Candle is the BEST diffuser I've ever used. The oil is long lasting and the one above is from their new decor range (sadly sold out in Clean Cotton which I have). I used one brand recently and the oil disappeared with a week - what a waste of £12. This will leave your house smelling fresh all.the.time. Win. 

3. Tarts or Oils

I also have a tart burner/oil burner because obviously, diffusers and candles are not enough for me. You can use oils or little wax tarts (or melts as some call them). You pop them in as a whole piece of heavenly scented wax, light a tealight and it dissolves into sweet smelling oil. Great thing with melts or tarts, they harden once you've burnt the candle and are super easy to remove. Perfect if you don't want a constant scent and want to mix scents up.  

So many lights and candles...bliss.
4. Where to Buy

You can buy straight from the websites I've linked to but for some, take time to shop around as there are always sales, discounts or end of line sites where you can save some money. QVC is another great place to buy Yankee candles as they often have special offers on the whole range (plus easy pay instalments which is amazing). If you're thinking ahead to Christmas, make sure you use Topcsahback to get money back from your purchases (i'm obsessed with cashback!).

If you've tried some brands I've not mentioned I've love to hear about them as I'm always wanting to try out new scents!

Sunday, 6 September 2015


It's starting to get a little cooler now which means for me, there's always a bit of a switch away from salads and light meals to warming, comforting foods like cottage pie and homemade soups. That said, with this weeks recipe I'm definitely still trying to keep the summer vibe alive! Paella. Now it's not seafood because as much as I try I just don't get on with seafood. You could easily add some prawns into this dish but for me it's a lovely chorizo and chicken paella and it was super easy apart from a lot of checking back that it wasn't sticking. One point - make sure you have a large pan as my pan was full to brimming with this dish which made it very tricky to not make a total mess on the cooker. 


Monday: Cottage Pie
TuesdayHomemade pizza with salad and coleslaw
Wednesday: Chicken & Chorizo Paella
Thursday: Piri Piri Chicken with giant cous cous & corn on the cob
Friday:  Tuna sweetcorn & mayo with jacket potatoes and salad
Saturday: Pepper & goats cheese bake, potato wedges & salad
Sunday: Turkey Kofta with rice, spring onion, & tahini dressing 


Serves 4-6

2 cloves garlic
1 onion
1 carrot 
1 pepper
fresh parsley (dried works ok too)
chicken breasts (I used three)
olive oil
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tbs tomato puree
chicken stock
300g paella rice
frozen peas

Peel and chop the garlic, onion and carrot and on another board, the chorizo & chicken. Get your pan and heat up your olive oil and add in the chorizo. I like my chorizo crispy so I crisped this up and then added all of my other chopped ingredients. Start to fry and add in the paprika and parsley, fry for 5 mins. 

Chop your pepper and add this to the pan and fry for 5 more mins. Stir in tomato puree, crumble in your stock cube and then add in the paella rice. Stir so it all gets coated and then add in 750ml boiling water along with salt and pepper to taste.

Pop a lid on, bring to the boil and then let it reduce. Simmer for 15 mins but keep a eye on it and stir every now and then

After 15 mins add in your peas (and your prawns if you're that way inclined), and stir through. ADd the lid and cook for 5 more mins. 

Serve up and garnish with lemon ready to squeeze over!

Serving suggestion - LOTS OF SANGRIA!