Banana and Berry Blast Smoothie

I find this delicious breakfast smoothie is perfect when I wake up in the afternoon/evening (hopefully the evening, it means I have had a good long sleep!!!) before a night shift, it gets me off on the right foot. It is so tasty and smooth like ice-cream, it makes me very happy!! It is vegan friendly too 🙂 Packed full of energy providing ingredients, you can’t go wrong having this to kick start your day or night 😉

Smoothie

What you’ll need (Makes 1):

  • 1 Frozen Banana
  • 1/2 Cup Frozen Berries of choice
  • 1 Tbsp. Peanut Butter
  • 1/2 Tsp. Vanilla Essence
  • 1/2 Cup of Oats
  • A sprinkle of cinnamon
  • A good dash of Milk (almond works well here)

Throw everything into a blender.If you don’t have frozen berries or bananas you can just throw some ice into the mix.

Serve in a tall glass with added fresh berries and desiccated coconut on top…. makes it look as pretty as it tastes 🙂

Enjoy

Fairymojo*

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Chocolate coconut flapjacks….

These are so easy to make and full of wholesome healthy ingredients. They are perfect lunchbox snacks or after a workout…they are loaded with energy 😊 

What you’ll need: 

  • 1 1/4 cup of traditional oats
  • 1 Tbsp. dried sliced coconut
  • 3 Tbsp. Dessicated coconut
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • 2 Tbsp. Peanut butter
  • 2 Tbsp. Coconut oil
  • 3 Tbsp. Of honey or maple syrup (I use half of each)

For the topping:

  • 100g of dark chocolate (i use 74% cocoa)
  • 1 Tbsp. Of coconut oil
  • Dessicated coconut for decoration 

Pre heat the oven to 180° Celsius. Prepare a on 8″ x 8″ silicone square mould for the flapjacks. 

In a large bowl mix the oats, salt and coconut. 

In a pan melt the honey/maple syrup, peanut butter and coconut oil. Add the mixture to the large bowl with the oats and mix well. 

Press the mixture into the mould and bake for 10 minutes until browned. Once the flapjacks are fully cooled (to room temperature), prepare the chocolate by melting it with coconut oil in the microwave or in a bain-marie. 

Pour the Chocolate on top of the flapjacks and sprinkle them with dessicated coconut. Once fully cooled cut into 8-16 sqaures. 

I store mine in the fridge as the chocolate melts easier once coconut oil is added to it. 

What are you waiting for? Get baking!!! 😍

Enjoy

Fairymojo*

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The real ‘Stairway to Heaven….’,Cuilcagh Legnabroky, Fermanagh

Why go all the way to Fermanagh for a walk? That is like a 3.5 hour drive?? There are many reasons why… aside from getting to go to Asda and buying Rhubarb and Custard tea and cheap ibuprofen, Cuilcagh Legnabroky is the hottest place to hike in Ireland right now, Ireland’s very own stairway to heaven.

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We (My Friend Linda and I) set off from Castletroy in Limerick at half 7 in the morning with Otis Spunkmeyer cappuccinos and mini banana bread muffins (I made them, there is a blog with a recipe…I gotta plug myself!). We stayed on the road till we made it to Athlone. We had a long conversation trying to figure out whether Athlone is a county and if not what county was in in?? I think we figured out that it was in Westmeath. We went for brunch in Bastion Kitchen. This quaint little cafe on Bastion street is perfect for coffee and food. We got a delicious breakfast with falafel, hummus, pitta bread, salad and runny poached eggs… it was so delicious and filling (see photos below)The coffee is so good too 🙂 Very friendly staff and good value for money. They sell a range of healthy food stuffs like peanut butter, coconut chocolate bars and hemp protein too.

When we got to Enniskillen we checked into our hotel and then we headed out for a quick snack and a coffee. We went to Frou Frou Tea Shop. It looked great from the outside, with a cream vintage theme, there was a great selection of cakes and buns. We got a slice of Victoria Sponge cake, carrot cake and 2 cappuccinos. It was ok, it was way to quite in there…almost uncomfortable. I am all for peace and calm but it felt like you couldn’t really talk, it needs a little background music. The cake was good though, we went to pay and it was a little steep it was nearly £15 for cake and coffee for two people. There was nutmeg on top of the coffee, an acquired taste, I wouldn’t do that without asking. Wouldn’t be going back there!!!!

In order to make ourselves feel a little less guilty about indulging in cake we set out to find Topped Mountain. I had read about it on Trip Advisor.  Topped mountain is just outside Enniskillen and is about 277 meters high, you will be up and down it in 20 minutes 🙂 The views from the top are really worth the journey. Not the easiest to locate on google maps, the trick is to get to Tempo road and then it is really well sign posted with large brown signs.

After our walk we decide it was time to indulge again and we went down to a pub called ‘Blake of the Hollows’ notorious for the oldest public house in Enniskillen. They have an extensive gin menu so we had to have one. We went for Drumshanbo Irish Gunpowder Gin, delicious! We actually ended up writing a list of the places we want to walk in the coming year and there was a mention of Kilimanjaro… that is for another day though!!!

We were in bed early…(like 9pm, I just wanted it to be go time!!!) We were up super early (6am) for proats, banana bread muffins and strong coffee.

Recipes for the perfect hikers breakfast available here: Proats: https//fairymojo.wordpress.com/2017/02/02/protein-oats-proats/), Banana Bread Muffins https://fairymojo.wordpress.com/2017/02/20/banana-and-chocolate-chip-muffins/.)

Cuilcagh Legnabroky is really well signposted from Enniskillen, you generally follow sign for the Marble Arch Geo Park. Parking is free when you get there (The trail car park is about 1 km from the main car park for the Marble Arch Caves), we were the first ones to arrive so we chose to park really close to the exit. By the time we were leaving the car park was full and had spilled out onto the road so getting there early is very advisable.

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Cuilcagh Legnabroky, The Real Stairway to Heaven

On starting the walk you exit the car park, you are not alone for the first part of the walk, you are surrounded by sheep and lambs, so cute! The trail is very easy to follow it begins on a long windy stoney path which eventually transforms to wooden walkway. The route brings you around one of the largest blanket bogs in Europe and hence the building if the wooden walkway, to protect it from people. The landscape is quite bleak, but beautiful none the less. It was a bright morning but the wind was against us and made walking that bit more difficult. You can see the staircase built into the mountain when you are about a quarter of the way there. They have set aside lovely benches to take a break and even a little shed with benches were you can get shelter, we stopped and took photos, had FigRolls. It was really lovely. As I said, we got there early so we were able to take our time and enjoy the unscathed view. Later on, on decent it was starting to get crowded and loud.

On our way home we stopped in Grogan’s for soup and coffee in Glasson, probably the best soup I have had in years, great service and atmosphere. Very good value for money too, highly recommended. For the final final stop, we got ’99’s in Killbeggan 🙂 🙂 I had a ’99 everyday… I am not sorry!

Grogans

I am not sure if I go places so much for the hiking or the eating but either way I am very happy doing both. It is worth the trip to Fermanagh, I just don’t think I would stay over in Enniskillen again, it didn’t get me very excited.

Check it out.

Enjoy

Fairymojo*

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Black bean brownies… gooey chocolatey goodness ♥ 

A new take on brownies… these are so easy to make and so chocolatey 😍 throw everything in a blender and off you go. I have such a sweet tooth so I have to try new ways to get my chocolate sugar fix that is a bit healthier. 

What you’ll need:

  • 1 can of drained black beans 
  • 1/2 an avocado
  • 3/4 cups of brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup of pecans
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp baking powder 
  • 1/4 cup of honey 
  • Salt
  • 1 tbsp of coconut oil 
  • 3 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 120g melted dark chocolate
  • Hazelnuts for decoration

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees celius. Line a cupcakes tray with bun cases. Throw everything into the blender, mix well for a few minutes. Melt the chocolate in a bowl over a lot of water and add that in. Add a spoonful of the mixture to each of the 12 cupcake cases and top with chopped hazelnuts. 

I cooked mine for about 22 minutes, this ensures they are nice and gooey! Try not to eat them all in one go. Great as a healthy snack for the lunchbox. 

Enjoy 

Fairymojo*

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Keeper hill… never too late in the day for a walk…

I would honestly never think to go and climb a mountain late in the evening. Then when it was suggested, I thought why not??? I had been cooped up in work all weekend sitting on my ass and I wanted to get out and stretch my legs…it was ok for me to go here, I have been here before, I knew the route and I had everything I needed with me from a whistle to a torch to my trusted fig rolls 😂

Keeper hill is located just outside Newport, Co. Tipperary and stands 694m high. You will make it up and down in about 3-4 hours. It is a gentle gradient to the base of the mountain through forest on a stoney path. It has a few false peaks 🙈 but eventually you will see the aerial on the top and the trig point. The scenery is breathtaking, you get beautiful views all around. 

So next time you think about going out hiking or walking never think that it is too late in the day, grab your torch and go… You might even catch the sunset. 

Enjoy

Fairymojo 

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W.B. Yeats – I have spread my dreams under your feet

W.B. Yeats – I have spread my dreams under your feet

HAD I the heavens’ embroidered cloths,
Enwrought with golden and silver light,
The blue and the dim and the dark cloths
Of night and light and the half light,
I would spread the cloths under your feet:
But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
I have spread my dreams under your feet;
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.

W.B. Yeats (1865–1939)
“He Wishes For the Cloths of Heaven”

 

I wanted to share this because I like it so much 🙂

Operation: Take a Compliment

I had a friend who knew a Spanish girl who said ‘Penney’s’, when someone gave her a drink on a night out because she thought it was how we, the Irish, say ‘Thank You’.

‘I love your dress’…. ‘Thanks, Penney’s!!!’

No, Stop right there! Irish men and women need to learn how to take a compliment. Why is that we need to make excuses when we look good, have lost weight or have achieved something?? We need to learn to be proud of ourselves and just say ‘Thank you’. I am trying to change the tide in the way I myself take a compliment. I am my own worst enemy when it comes to self criticism and compliments. Sometimes you need to take 5, look at yourself and think of all the things that you have achieved.

Complemtn

It doesn’t even need to be anything major, it can be that you bought a house all by yourself, learned to cook a new dish, baked a cake, taught someone something new or you ran a half a kilometer more than you did yesterday. Say ‘Well done me! ‘They say, ‘Self praise, is no praise’, I disagree, be proud of yourself, reflect and tell yourself in a mantra that you are doing OK (without rocking yourself from side to side and looking a bit mad).

Give honest compliments, sometimes telling one person something really simple and honest can make their day, it costs nothing to be pleasant. Life is hard enough as it is, it is nice to be nice.

Bite your tongue and say ‘Cheers!’, the next time someone says something agreeable to you.

Just a thought, rant over.

Enjoy

Thank you for reading this 😉

Fairymojo*

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Carrantouhil…Ireland’s Highest Mountain (1038.6m)

This has become my favourite mountain to climb. Located just outside Kilarney in Co. Kerry, Carrauntohil stands 1038.6 metres tall and holds the accolade for being Ireland’s tallest mountain in the centre of Macgillycuddy Peaks mountain range.

Devils ladder

When you get there: You arrive in Cronin’s yard where parking for the day is a very reasonable €2. They also have little huts to stay in and areas to camp that are surrounded by fields dotted with big fluffy sheep, truly picturesque. When we arrived (Easter Sunday) Spring had sprung and there were baby lambs frolicking in the fields, we had our Easter eggs in our back packs and we were being overly optimistic by packing sunglasses.

Mountain Kerry

We set off on our walk (after a search for Ciaran’s tights!!!) which was to take between 6-6.5 hours. The weather was perfect for walking, it was about 10-12 degrees, dry and clear on the ground, it was a really fresh day. We had decided that we were going to take the Devil’s ladder route up the mountain, we made our way there via the Hag’s Glen and passing The Hag’s Tooth (questioning where the rest of this Hag was 😉 ) . We would decide what route to take on the descent by way of a vote later on. The devil’s ladder is the most straight forward way up but over the years the rocks have become very loose so you need to be careful of what is going on in front of you and behind you as rocks are easily dislodged. You can’t miss the devil’s ladder, it stands tall and ominous in front of you and looking back you have a view of the beautiful lakes behind you. We took a little time here to look at out OS maps and take a little lesson in map reading, the main thing that I remember is ‘Put red to bed!!!’ It was fun, very rewarding when I figured it out and definitely something that I need to start doing a lot more of.

Compass

When we got to the top of devil’s ladder we took a little break and had some fig rolls before we went to tackle the last section of the climb. What I love the most about hiking is how friendly everyone is when you are walking. Everyone will say hello, ask you how you are and there is so much good banter. We met a lovely family from Kerry who we met at various stages along the way. They were sitting down having their lunch , they were admiring the views half way up Devil’s ladder and said ‘Lovely views, pity about those fecking mountains!!!’, brilliant 🙂 Every person is the same on the mountain. I have said it before and I will say it again, enjoy the walk, look around you and take everything in. Don’t just try to run to the top and keep your eyes on the ground the whole time.

Ascendng

We were near the peak and started to see the Cross atop the mountain and the sense of achievement was visible in us all. I got a few breathing techniques from Ciaran to get me to the top, take a long deep breathe in through your nose and hold it for a few seconds before you take a large exhale, repeat three or four times, this really works to expel all the carbon dioxide from your body and regulate breathing again and rocket you to the top. The main thing for us was getting to the top and cracking those Easter eggs of our heads:) The visibility from the top wasn’t great for us but of course as we descended the clouds lifted and it was clear as day, we thought about heading back up again to see the views!!!! Linda and I have no luck when it comes to visibility on the top of all the  mountains that we have climbed together. After a quick recharge we decided it was time to go back down.

Decide

There are a few ways to get back down and we decided (by vote, 2-1, sorry Linda!) that we would take the Devil’s Ladder way back down again. There is another option the zig-zag route but looking at it it looked like quite a climb again to the top, and a pretty steep climb down. The next time I go climbing I will go the zig-zag way 🙂 I think there is another option too, Heaven’s gates, but I am not too sure about that. The devil’s ladder is the quickest way down. The to

Top of the rock, with our Easter Eggs 🙂

For afterwards they have a tea room/cafe at Cronin’s Yard where you can get home baked treats (tea cakes, scones, apple tarts), Sandwiches, Toasties and soup with brown bread, tea and coffee. Kick back, sign the visitors book, read the books scattered around the tea room and talk to fellow hikers about your experiences, enjoy every moment. I always like to get a ’99 after a hike, it is totally guilt free 🙂

AAAAA

For more information on packing for a walk/hike check this out : https://fairymojo.wordpress.com/2017/04/05/hiking-what-to-pack-and-eat/

Thank you Linda for taking the photos and to Ciaran for providing the singing 🙂

Enjoy

Get out there 🙂

Fairymojo*

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10 things you HAVE to buy in Morocco

10 thing you have to bring home from Morocco: 

  1. A Tagine (Traditional cooking Dish)IMG_20170325_214421_143.jpg

These are not only ornately beautiful but if you have a gas stove at home they are incredibly good for cooking with. A traditional Moroccan way of cooking is using the Tagine and we ate so many good ones (Thank you Fatah, seen below). You can buy them in local markets for very little, I bought a medium and tiny baby sized one for €3 and that included a tip. I was in Lahinch surfing and the restaurant Randaddy’s does a really good Moroccan Meat Ball Tagine loaded with fresh coriander and served with delicious fresh bread with red onion and cheese, give it a go.

Fatah

2.Moroccan Lamps, They are so Beautiful and Intricately detailed. They come in all shapes, sizes and colours and are readily available for purchase at the local markets. You need to think about how you would get them home though. Maybe get yourself a shipping container altogether!!!! When I go back I think that is what I will do 🙂

Lamps In Agadir

3. Spices : Saffron (Cheap as chips, you pay nearly €5 for a few sprigs of it in supermarkets in Ireland!!!), Cumin, Coriander…the list is endless… you can even get a Tagine mix that has everything you need for cooking the traditional  delicious dish. Pick yourself up a cookbook or ask the locals for recipes to recreate your favourite dishes when you get home. Loose teas leaves of all flavors are fun to buy too.

Spices

4. Slippers (Lovely Leather slippers with beautiful stitching). Not a great picture but below is a pair of slippers that I bought, they are real leather and cost about €5.

IMG_20170328_234254

5. Leather (Abundant at the Souks, it is very affordable, you can pick up handbags, belts, you name it they have it. Barter, do not be afraid to get yourself a good deal. Below is a picture of blue leather clutch bag that i bought for about €10, I love it.

Leather in Agadir

6. Amlou Al Moumtaz (Peanut Butter)

This is absolutely a must for the peanut butter lovers out there. From the picture below it doesn’t look great but it is so good with Arabic bread, you buy it for half nothing at the local stores and it is made from peanuts, honey and sugar. When you are doing that much yoga you need the energy (that is my excuse for lapping it up anyway)!!!

Amlou

7. Jewellery

You can just be sitting on the beach and a seller will appear out of no where and show you some of the most beautiful pieces of jewellery you have ever seen. You can bargain so much that you can do really well for yourself. It is available all over from the beach, shops and souks.

Jewlerry

8. Argan Oil

So good for your hair, skin and nails. There is a cosmetic version for the latter and a natural version for eating etc.

9. Sarong (Traditional scarf that can be transformed into dresses)

The guys on the market would be more than happy to show you how to wear these. They cost as little as €5 at the local markets.

Sarong

10. Tiles and Textiles

If you have recently bought a new house or you are about to renovate, Morocco is a treasure trove of all things household. From decorative carvings, cookery dishes, bowls, rugs, lamps…Tiles are everywhere and a few of these cause spruce up a shelving unit or they could be put randomly all over a bathroom floor… The possibilities are endless.

Tiles

Lucky extra number eleven…… 11. This is not a must but if you have room in your case get a DONKEY!!!! We were sitting at a petrol station having coffee and this little fella was walking on the opposite side of the road, we promptly called him over and I paid the guy who owned him 50c to have a spin. Best 50c I ever spent ❤ I love donkeys!!!!

You would need a check-in bag for sure. Take care at the markets that you don’t get scammed by locals (that you do not know) that try and help you buy things, there is heavy policing to protect tourists against this at the markets.

Again I cannot thank all the guys working at Bessha hoildays for showing us everything and taking us to see everything 🙂 Goats in trees are also very worth seeing 🙂 We caught a glimpse of them on the way to Essouira.

Thank you: Souifan, Sarah, Fatah and Ramzi 🙂

A donkey

Enjoy

Fairymojo*

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