7 books that could change your life

If you’re anything like me then you’re going to be very excited about this competition. I love books, and especially books that are aimed at teaching you something about yourself or helping you to improve your life. (Apart from that AWFUL one I ranted about earlier this week of course. Damn that woman.)

None of the books in my competition are hideous like that one.

These seven books all come from one of my very favourite websites of all time, The Book People. What that means is that technically, although the RRP of the collection comes to more than £89, you could buy them all from The Book People for less than £30. Now you see why I like The Book People so much.

So this is what I’ve got in the collection: View Post

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How perfect a competition is this for me to promote?!

You know I love front doors. Here are a few of my favourites:

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January blues, post-Christmas depression, SAD, Blue Monday – whatever you call it, January is a bit crap isn’t it? It’s light for about 47 minutes a day, you’re broke and tired… I know what you need!

A competition!

This competition comes courtesy of the lovely people at Get Fruity. January isn’t crap for them – they’re celebrating because they’ve just started selling their Cornish made fruity oat bars in Tesco.

Hoorah!

I’ve been munching my way through a couple of their mixed boxes over the last few weeks and they really are tasty. Get Fruity bars are made with fruit, oats and virgin coconut oil, contain absolutely no refined sugars, and are gluten free, dairy free and vegan certified. They have really interesting flavours too, like juicy apricot, orange and ginger.

Basically they’re pretty ace. 

Because they’re so tasty and wholesome, they’re perfect for packed lunches. With this in mind, Get Fruity have put together a fantastic prize bundle, consisting of a month’s supply of their mixed boxes, a choice of either a Frozen or an Avengers lunch box and drinks bottle, and a £50 voucher to spend at one of their stockists – either Ocado, Waitrose or Tesco – it’s up to you which you’d prefer.

Get Fruity bars View Post

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This dairy free pineapple and coconut smoothie recipe is inspired by my recent trip to Vietnam.

They have a lot of coconuts in Vietnam. We visited the Mekong Delta on day two, and went by boat to a tiny island where they make sweets out of coconut, grinding up the coconut and boiling it with sugar cane. We saw a lot of coconut based souvenirs too and, best of all, I got to drink a lot of coconut water. Pretty much everywhere you go you can order coconut water to drink, just like you might order a Coke – they just cut the top off a coconut and stick in a straw.

Not only does it taste amazing but it looks pretty cool too.

When Dole asked me if I wanted to try out their new frozen fruit packs then, I thought it might be fun to try and create a coconut smoothie recipe that you could actually drink out of a coconut, should you felt so inclined. 

Pineapple and coconut smoothie recipe

Of course you can just make it and have it in a glass like a normal person, but where would be the Instagrammable fun it that?! I realised too, when I came home and found myself ordering a massive cheese platter when out for lunch with a friend, that I pretty much ate no dairy in Vietnam, so I figured a dairy free smoothie recipe would fit well.

But first things first…

How to break a coconut in half

This was the challenge. 

I’ve won coconuts at fairs before, but I’ve only ever eaten them by smashing them up with a hammer. You can’t display a smoothie just by pouring it over a smashed up coconut can you?

No.

I needed something a little more professional looking. 

I watched a few YouTube videos and the best approach, should you not happen to have a circular saw lying around at home, (which I don’t), seemed to be to tap around the circumference of the coconut with a hammer. (Drain the coconut water out first, or you will make a mess.)

I did this for about three or four minutes and started to get worried as nothing was happening. I had bought three coconuts, just in case anything went wrong with the first one, but I didn’t especially want to fail at the first hurdle. I kept on tapping and lo and behold, just at the point when I was ready to throw it on the floor and stamp on it, a crack started to appear! I kept tapping, following the crack, and look what happened!

I felt pretty pleased with myself.

dairy free pineapple and coconut smoothie recipe

Then the recipe – this is a piece of cake in comparison.

How to make a pineapple and coconut smoothie

It’s pretty straightforward to make a dairy free pineapple and coconut smoothie, and the beauty of smoothie recipes is that you can be really flexible with them and adapt them according to personal taste or whatever you have in the fridge. For this recipe I used the following:

dairy free pineapple and coconut smoothie recipe

I was making my smoothie just for me, so if you want to make it for more than one person you’ll need to scale up the quantities.

Start with a big dollop of coconut yogurt in the bottom of a regular sized Nutribullet cup. Add a good handful of Dole frozen pineapple chunks. The benefit of using frozen fruit, other than that you don’t end up with mouldy fruit in the fridge because you forget to use it, is that you don’t need to add ice – the frozen fruit thickens the smoothie up a little and makes it lovely and cold.

dairy free pineapple and coconut smoothie recipe

Top up your cup to around the ‘max’ line with coconut drink. I used Koko dairy free but you could use whatever you like. You could even try using the liquid you drained out of your coconut earlier if you are going for the full tropical experience.

dairy free pineapple and coconut smoothie recipe

Then just whizz it up!

Now is the fun bit. If you’re just going to drink it, like a regular person, then go ahead! It’s yummy isn’t it? I was worried about the balance between the pineapple and coconut flavours but I think this is just about perfect. The Dole frozen pineapple gives it a lovely fresh, clean flavour and chills it too. This would be lovely with a cheeky splash of rum.

If, like me, you prepare all your food and drink with the sole purpose of taking nice Instagram pictures, then now’s the time to pour your pineapple and coconut smoothie into your coconut. (If you’re using the half with the three holes then don’t forget to plug them with something. I used blutac. Please don’t take that as a recommendation.)

I decorated my pineapple and coconut smoothie with tropical straws and toasted a little bit of flaked coconut to garnish. I did this just by tossing the coconut in a dry frying pan for about five minutes.

Tada!

dairy free pineapple and coconut smoothie recipe

dairy free pineapple and coconut smoothie recipe

 

How to win your own Nutribullet

If you’d like to win your own Nutribullet, so that you can easily whizz up a dairy free pineapple and coconut smoothie whenever you fancy it, all you need to do is come up with your own easy smoothie recipe, inspired by your own travels. Take a picture of your smoothie and post it on Instagram with the hashtag #MYDOLESMOOTHIE.

I’ve posted about the competition here on my own Instagram, to inspire you:

It doesn’t have to be a super fancy recipe, just something that you love, and that makes you think of a favourite holiday or adventure. The winner will be chosen based on a combination of creativity, quality of photography and the story behind the recipe. The competition will close at midnight on 31st December, so you have the holidays to get creative. (Full T&Cs at the bottom of this post.)

Good luck!

Like the look of my dairy free pineapple and coconut smoothie recipe? Why not pin the image below for later?

dairy free pineapple and coconut smoothie recipe

Produced in association with Dole. 

The winner will be notified via private message on Instagram within seven days of the closing date and must respond within 30 days with their name and a mainland UK address for the prize to be delivered to. If any Prize Winner fails to claim the Prize within 30 days they will forfeit the Prize and another valid Entry may be drawn. We will arrange for the Prize to be delivered to you at the address provided, at our cost. Please allow up to 28 days for delivery. Only one Entry can be made per Eligible Participant; additional Entries made by the same Eligible Participant will not be accepted. Entrants must be in the UK and 18+. Judge’s decision final.

 

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If ever was a post that proved that I am a woman not afraid to make a fool of herself in the name of money fun, then this is it.

Now probably there would be a few of you who wouldn’t fancy the idea of sharing videos of yourself dancing, but really, when you stop to think about it, why the hell not? What exactly are you thinking that people will see that they don’t see every day? Not keen on a close up of your bottom? I hate to tell you, but everyone can see your bottom all of the time. It’s just that it’s behind you, so you forget about it.

Embrace it! Flaunt that bum! Celebrate the fact that you’re alive and can dance around your living room should you want to.

Like this…

You’re welcome.

My incredibly accomplished dancing isn’t just for fun though, it’s to let you know about a competition from OVO Energy where you can win a custom onesie by sharing your own super cool dance moves. A onesie is just the thing for throwing some shapes at home over the winter. It doesn’t even matter if you’re a little bit shy – why not just take a little video of your feet getting jiggy? All you have to do to enter is to pop your clip on Instagram or with OVO Energy on Twitter and use the hashtag #ShakeItOVO.  View Post

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