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A FAMILY LIFESTYLE BLOG

Styling A Farmhouse Kitchen

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As many of you know we have been wanting to renovate our kitchen for some time, but for one reason or another we never seemed to get around to actually beginning. So over the summer we decided it was time to bite the bullet bullet and begin our kitchen renovation, we are so excited to share our progress with you and finally, IT'S TIME. 


*This post is in collaboration with DESENIO, Use code ‘MIMIROSEANDME25’ for 25% off all prints between 17th September and 19th September ONLY! Excluding frames and handpicked/personalised prints.*

It's been quite the challenge with a few setbacks and needing to postpone until the beginning of the holidays, not our best decision I can tell you. It was hard living in the middle of the chaos, trying to keep a little one occupied and confined in the house during the hottest months of the year. It's still not perfect but we are a working progress and so I wanted to share all the details of our styling our farmhouse kitchen.


Planning our kitchen renovation has been something on the cards for a while, however we wanted to get the rest of the house all completed before starting on renovating a kitchen as we knew it wasn't going to be an easy task. Ever since we moved into our forever home we always knew that we wanted a modern country style vibe in our kitchen (thanks to the many hours of scrolling though pinterest). However designing a kitchen isn't as simple as you'd think as there is quite a lot to take into consideration. With millions of paint colors, cabinet stains, and countertop, tile and backsplash options settling on a final design is both exciting and daunting. 

Our kitchen is the heart of our home as we tend to spend a lot of time in the kitchen entertaining family and friends so it's really important to get the design just right. We wanted to try and create a kitchen that was warm and inviting, yet simple and humble with natural wood, classic shaker style cabinetry, ceramic sink and a soft colour palette. The reason why a farmhouse design appealed to us the most because you can choose almost any colour scheme that works best for you and the space you have, whilst still maintaining a traditional farmhouse style. 

Keep your walls and cabinets light and bright 

Light should always be encouraged to flow throughout the room as much as possible.  We decided on cream cabinetry and units as we felt as if this would help make our kitchen seem much more open than it actually is. However if you're someone who needs colour then there is nothing wrong with painting an accent wall or something. The whole reason why we decided to renovate our kitchen was due to the fact it had an awful lighting, it was very yellow. We wanted to make the kitchen feel brighter and bigger without changing the outlay of the kitchen, too much. The kitchen has rustic elements that add a farmhouse sophistication to the space. The walls and worktops are a stark contrast to the cream cabinets and we honestly couldn't be more in love. 




Don't underestimate kitchen art

By adding a splash of art to your kitchen walls is a great way to keep your decorative flow. There are a couple of prints already in my home, but there is a cute white shelf that I am desperate to decorate with pretty prints. I really love the idea of open shelving in a kitchen as you can change the look from time to time. The most recent additions to my shelving are all from Desenio, we have worked with Desenio before when we renovated our modern and minimalist home office. I adore Desenio and all their gorgeous prints with hundreds of photos, quotes, illustrations and art to choose from there is bound to be something to suit your taste. These prints can really help change the look of any room and the fact that Desenio are so reasonable in their pricing, you will probably get more than one or two prints.




As we are going for a farmhouse kitchen style with rustic woods theme throughout we decided to go for a wooden frames as the contrast looked amazing against the pebble coloured walls and on the white shelving. When it came to choosing the prints for my open shelving I knew I needed to choose something that made a big statement which is why we decided to go for this gorgeous sketch Watercolour Hands No3 which is of two people holding hands by their little fingers. As we wanted it the key focal point on the shelving we decided to get this particular print in a large size of 40x50 and we are in love. We also decided to get this Forest Silhouette 21x30 and it really compliments our woodland theme hallway and helps with the flow, this is one of three prints available in the range. Our favourite and final print for our kitchen shelves is the typography prints Sweet Home in a landscape view in the 21x30. Framed art displayed on open shelves adds an inviting focal point to an open, airy kitchen. It’s also a great place to welcome friends and family making quite the impact.



Supersize the sink 

There is only one option when it comes to farmhouse kitchen sinks, and that's ceramic. Traditional and hard wearing, a deep ceramic sink coupled with a similarly-styled draining board is the perfect addition to the farmhouse theme. We have a more than an ample kitchen, however we don't have the space for a dishwasher not matter how hard I wish, but deciding on a sink that will work well in a farmhouse kitchen is not always easy. There are so many different styles and designs that you really are spoiled for choice, this reversible 1.5 bowl inset sink with a main bowl capacity of 25L is a traditional ceramic sink that really suited the farmhouse style. We also decided to integrate this ceramic sink into our rustic wooden work tops to make it completely seamless, one of my favourite features in the kitchen. With its integrated drainer and simple design all it needs is a sleek stainless-steel tap to make it a real feature to enhance the style of our kitchen. We chose to add a beautiful traditional style tap with ceramic lever handles which is the perfect finishing touch to our farmhouse style kitchen.



Antiques and accessories

One of the easiest ways to incorporate farmhouse style into your kitchen and throughout is displaying vintages accessories. From mason jars and glassware to rolling pins and antique bowls, ideas to decorate a farmhouse kitchen are endless. These vintage items can often give color and charm to a kitchen whether you hang these items on wall or display them on shelving or in a glass front cabinets. 

Bring something living into your kitchen

Nothing brightens up a room than with a vase of fresh blooms so why not freshen up your kitchen with a plant or a vase of flowers. I'm literally obsessed with real flowers and I think that there is nothing quite like freshly cut flowers to liven up a room, making it colourful and so much more inviting. It helps that fresh flowers are not too pricey and add a certain decadence to a farmhouse kitchen. However, plants are a great addition to a farmhouse style kitchen too. An array of greenery throughout the home gives your home an instant botanical feel and make you think of embracing the outdoors. Plants in the home has become one of the biggest design trends over the past few years. People crave bringing a bit of the outside in, from big statement furn trees to tiny succulents and even arrangements of herbs in a kitchen window sill. Plants can be arranged and clustered or spread out throughout, not only do they look nice and add a pop of colour, but they also help purify the air and can make you happier. If you have light in your kitchen, you might even be able to grow some herbs.


Smart storage collection

When we were planning our kitchen renovation an absolute essential part of the designing process was making sure that we utilized the storage space. Many modern kitchens tend to choose to hide away the majority of the utensils and appliances, but that is the beauty of designing a farmhouse kitchen it is the perfect place to have all these on display. Spice racks, a ceramic jug for wooden utensils, a knife block or hanging herbs there are so many ways you can try and ultilise your space in a farmhouse kitchen. Cabinets and drawers are also a great place to try start, as they are not always used to their full potential. We have added internal storage solutions to our drawers and cabinets with pull our wire racks, fitting a cornice cabinet, a pull out spice rack and under cooker draw for trays. 


I'm really happy with our farmhouse kitchen and even though it is still a working progress, it is by far my favourite room in the house. Slowly but surely the room is coming together really well and sure has a lot of character all we need now is some cute antique lighting and a few more rustic hues. One of my favourite ways to style our farmhouse kitchen was adding an open shelving and displaying these gorgeous prints and some flowers. I love the fact that I am able to change this opening shelving from time to time depending on my mood or the time of year. Why not grab yourself some of these gorgeous prints especially as all my wonderful readers can get 25% off posters on Desenio with my code! My code ‘MIMIROSEANDME25’ gives 25% off all prints on all Desenio sites between 17th September and until midnight (UK time) on the 19th September ONLY! Excluding frames and handpicked/personalised prints. Follow @desenio for more inspiration.

BIRCHBOX - September 2019: Sweet Simplicity

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Hello! It's BIRCHBOX time! I cannot tell you how happy I am with this month's box. This September, it's time to strip it back and embrace a more focused approach to beauty, something that I can totally get behind after a crazy fun filled summer. With Birchbox this month its all about channelling our own version of Sweet Simplicity with five beauty goodies including a Benefit Lip and Cheek Tint in either Lovetint or Posietint, a purifying cleanser from Caudalie and a delicious Baija body cream. 

If you're new to Birchbox they are one of the main leaders in the beauty box subscription game. Each month you will receive five deluxe samples and travel sized samples and these will be with makeup, skin care, body care or hair care. It's a great way to discover new products that you wouldn't normally come across if it wasn't for this little beauty subscription. So without further ado let's take a closer look. 

Benefit Cosmetics. Lip and Cheek Stain in Posietint. RRP | £15.50

I have used a couple of stains before as they are pretty amazing and this one in Posietint is an absolutely gorgeous shade. You can definitely perk yourself up with the petal inspired flush, it is a gorgeous colour to add to my complexion with being too much. Nobody wants to look like a clown. The application is so easy with three brush strokes and a little blending and you're good to go. It shows up lovely on my fair skin tone and lasts all day without getting patchy, smudging, drying, or transferring on anything. I love using this on both my lips and cheeks, a great all rounder to add into your handbag for on the go. 



Caudalie. Vinopure Purifying Gel Cleanser. RRP | £16

The summer hasn’t been kind to my skin, the rise in temperatures has left my skin feeling oily and full of blemishes. We have had an amazing summer with the longer days, the late sunsets, beach days and exploring lots of adventures outside in the wild. But all this summer fun has really changed my skin and its complexion. So now that we are heading into autumn it’s time for a skincare shake up starting with a cleanser. Caudalie is one of those brands that I will always go back to when it comes to changing up my skincare routine, their cleansing oil is my favourite. This purifying gel cleanser banishes those blemishes, unclogs pores and helps balance my skin without leaving my skin feeling tight, dry or irritated. 


VQ. Rose Gammage Peeling Gel. RRP £15

There is nothing like a good scrub or peel to add into a skincare shakeup and this VQ Rose Gammage Peeling Gel is pretty great. As it exfoliates using botanical extracts to peel away dirt, brighten my complexion and tighten my pores. With such a complex array of antioxidants, minerals, and vitamins, Rose Extract boasts incredible benefits when used in skin care. It can help cleanse skin and prevent blemishes minimizes redness and soothe irritation making it ideal for all skin types. I have sensitive skin and was a little worried that my skin wouldn't like this peel, but honestly my skin loves it. You simply massage onto dry clean skin and then rinse of warm water to reveal a radiant glow. This is definitely something that I will buy again. 


Beaver Professional. Cherry Blossom Conditioner. RRP | £19.40

This luxurious conditioner both moisturises and detangles hair without adding extra weight making it perfect for those looking to thicken fine or limp hair. Nourishes and conditions the scalp and hair, strengthen hair root, balances scalp environment, gives a soft, shine refresh and weightless feeling.This conditioner smells AMAZING and it was so lovely to apply to my hair in the shower in the mornings and it leaves my hair feeling super so and very nourished. I would highly recommend this product that needs to add a little life to their hair. 


Baija. Rose and Lychee Body Cream. RRP | £15.90

Pretty packaging, natural ingredients, animal-friendly, and crafted in France. Baïja is a brand with a lot of love and oh so fun as you can see the packing is something that immediately caught my eye. You don't tend to see a lot of packaging that is out there like Baïja, but that is not the only great thing about this brand. Each and every one of their products take inspiration from exotic aromas for sweet scented formulas. This Rose Lychee body cream is an indulgent cream, you know those creams that you keep for special me time moments. It is super creamy and the rose and lychee scent is just a perfect combination, I also like the fact that the cream is light weight and doesn't sit on the skin. 

So a pretty impressive box right? Have you come across any of these products before? Would you try any of these products, if so which ones?

Banana & Chocolate Oat Bars: Perfect Snack For Children

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We have been busy cooking up a storm in the kitchen this afternoon making these sweet and gooey Banana & Chocolate Oat Bars. My daughter loves any opportunity to put on her apron and get her wooden spoon to 'help' mix a bunch of ingredient together, One of her favourite parts of baking together has to be getting to lick the spoon but I'm sure that's a favourite part for most people. 


These Banana & Chocolate Oat Bars are one of the simplest baking recipes that we can whip up in a matter of minutes, they are such a great way to use over ripe bananas to avoid them going to waste. Perfect for a quick breakfast on the go, an afternoon snack to curb those sugar cravings or ideal sweet treat after dinner. Anytime of the day really. But as you know we have been really trying to make better choices when it comes to our food and being on the slimming world plan is really helping. However we are really missing chocolate, so these are great to eat for a chocolate fix and only 1.5 syns per bar how can I resist? 


You will need some bar moulds to cook these Banana & Chocolate Oat Bars, you can pick one of these from a Supermarket or Amazon. With the silicone moulds you are able to achieve a perfect breakfast bar. Just add porridge oats, nuts, almonds, dried fruits, honey, etc. The possibilities are endless so you can enjoy experimenting. This recipe is for 12 cake breakfast bars which equates to 2 days worth of Healthy Extra B or you can syn them if you prefer. Hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we do. I’d love to know how you got on and what you thought of making these Banana & Chocolate Oat Bars, if you like it, why not pin for a baking day.



Ingredients

2 very ripe banana, mashed.
2 medium eggs, beaten.
80g Oats ( 2 days of Healthy Extra B)
1/2 tsp. of cinnamon
25g milk cooking chocolate (4 squares) 
Fry light spray

Instructions

1. Preheat oven to 180°c/Gas Mark 5, spray your bar moulds with low calorie spray and set aside. 

2. In a medium size bowl, mash the bananas until smooth, leaving a few small chunk if you'd prefer. Add the beaten eggs, oats and cinnamon and mix until fully combined. 

3. Chop the chocolate into small chunks and stir into the mixture. If the mixture seems too wet, then add a tablespoon of oats syn accordingly. 

4. Using a tablespoon scoop one level of the mixture into each mould. Sprinkle the remaining chocolate on top of each mould. 

5. Bake for 15-20 minutes until golden, Remove from the oven, let your oat bars cook for a few minutes before eating. Store the leftovers in a tin or storage box and eat within three days. 

6. If you would like top with a spoonful of yoghurt, a couple of whole berries and a drizzle of honey, just try and experiment with flavours just remember to syn accordingly. 


If you like me, why not pin me for your next baking day. 


Tackling Those Back To School Stains with ACE

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In a blink of an eye the summer holidays are over. It has been one adventurous summer jam packed full of great times, good friends and amazing memories. But like all good things they must come to an end. Whether you have been counting down the days to September or wish summer could be a little longer its time for back to school. 


My daughter's first day back to school was great and she couldn't wait to tell me all about her first day back. They painted, they played, they ate lunch and did crafts in the afternoon. Great first day back, right? That was until got home to take her coat off and I found little red doodles all over her arms and her SHIRT. My daughter's teacher allowed the little ones loose with felt tip pens. FELT TIP PENS ON THE FIRST DAY BACK. And a RED on at that. Now as a parent to a fiesty little five year old I guess I kind of expected some kind of mishap with her uniform, but I never expected to be dealing with stains on the first day back to school. I'm a little dubious about how her uniform will look after the first time.

But despite her little mishap with the felt pens she enjoyed first week back at school. A new classroom, a new teacher, lots of new children and more of a scheduled day instead of just play. I am more than sure if reception is anything to go by that she will come home with stains, marks, paint splatters and mucky hands. But honestly what is it with little ones coming home covered in something or another. It was never this bad when she was a nursery or pre-school and considering she is older you would have thought she would be better. Oh no, sometimes she looks as if she has been living in a bush for three days after a day at school.


But this year I want to try and be as prepared as I can to tackle those stains and marks. Stains are inevitable. But that doesn't mean you have to toss out their uniform with the first sign of a stain or mark. With stain removal we have tried our fair share of products that are available, we like to keep a range of products on hand under our kitchen sink to combat those tougher stains. Our favourite stain removals are from ACE as they are affordable for everyone and they get rid of those stains completely. There is nothing worse in investing time and pennies for something that shortfalls its purpose. 

We have always used ACE for Colours stain remover as it is so handy to add to a your normal wash cycle. ACE for Colours has been specially formulated to remove the toughest of stains and yet be gentle on even the most delicate clothes. It is great for everyday use and removes typical dirt caused by soil and mud. It also helps to prevent fabric colours bleeding or transferring to other fabrics. So we always have a stash of this under our kitchen cupboard, however we have been introduced to a couple of other products from ACE that I know I will help tackle those stubborn stains.


This ACE for Colours Powder which is basically the same stain remover as ACE for Colours in a powder form with a fully-recycable cardboard box. This little handy box also included as little metal dispenser to make your stain removing process easy, however this was something that I didn't realise until I open the box at the top. 

My daughter loves creating her own artwork, and in turn most of this ends up on her school shirts. Paint splashes, felt tip pen, glue and glitter, always the glitter. So I have been searching high and low for a product that helps keep my whites WHITE. Is there anything worse than a dull school shirt? ACE for Whites is actually amazing, and I am not just saying that. I have never used any whitener that is as good as this little wonder bottle. The ACE for White has been formulated to work better on lighter fabrics; however never mix lights with any form of colour. For us, this was brilliant at getting my daughter red felt tip pen out of her shirt after her first day of school.


We also liked the ACE Stain Remover which is a spray bottle of stain remover with active oxygen. Personally I really like the idea of a spray remover as it can be so much easier to use than soaking or powder, this one is great for those tougher stains. All you do is spray directly on the stain and underneath the stain, leave for five minutes and then wash as normal.


I then tried the ACE Power Mousse, a great all rounder as it can be used on more than clothes! It is a spray bottle so you can just spray directly on to what you want to clean, simple. Our bathroom tiles needed a little love this week as we all got back to some kind of normality meaning a deep clean throughout. Our bathroom tiles needed a steam and cleanse as this ACE Power Mousse removed the staining on the grout with ease. It is perfect for fabrics and hard surfaces and also has odour masking technologies, leaving behind a fresh fragrance.


Overall, I think the ACE products have been fantastic. They have removed stains from our clothes and been great to use in our home too. These ACE products are definitely something that will help see me through the school year. Not only will they keep our clothes spotless, by having no stains and keeping the colours brighter our clothes will last longer which is exactly what we need with my daughter and her uniform.

** Disclaimer: We were kindly gifted this ACE bundle for our back to school content, but as always my thoughts and opinions are my own **

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