Cranberry and Chocolate Chip Cookies (The Perfect Christmas Cookie)

What you’ll need (to make 12 cookies):

  • 75 grams of Castor Sugar
  • 80 grams of Brown Sugar
  • 110 grams of plain flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon of BiCarb soda
  • 190 grams of oats
  • 150 grams of dried cranberries
  • 180 grams of white chocolate chips
  • 125 grams of melted unsalted butter
  • 1 lightly beaten egg
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

 

Method:

  • Preheat oven to 180 degrees (Celsius)
  • Combine all ingredients in a large bowl.
  • Mix thoroughly
  • Place roughly 12 spoonfuls onto a baking paper-lined tray
  • Flatten cookie mixture slightly and bake for 8-10 minutes
  • Allow to cool

 

Voila!!

We’re Only Human

WARNING: Potentially Unpopular Opinion

Humans are predisposed to reflexively put the blame and hate on someone else. Whenever something goes wrong or not quite as planned, the last thing a person wants to do is admit that they are the ones at fault (whether this may be the case or not). Furthermore, people have a tendency to either forget or ignore the affects that blame and hate can have on a person.

Allow me to paint a picture the current president of the United States is Donald Trump. Before I get into this I want to highlight that I am not a fan of the Trump administration and my knowledge on American politics is very slim. Now, I am aware of some of the things Trump has said and done, but I am also aware of the way in which some people have reacted to it. While people should certainly defend their rights in regards to some of the things he has said, I have never and will never condone hatred towards a persons personal life and their character. A lot of people seem to dislike this man purely because of his name. In addition to this, his sons, his daughter and his wife have definitely copped their fair share of heat e.g. the most recent attack on the First Lady for her choice of Christmas tree colour… (seriously!?!?! In the words of Peter Giffin “Who the hell cares?” It comes down to personal taste and while it’s ok for you to not be a fan of it, if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t speak). Trump has also been attacked for his appearance, and quite simply speaking.

I feel like most politicians tend to cop it due to the decision that them and THEIR POLITICAL PARTY MAKE (emphasis on the fact that most jobs and decisions about anything are not made by one individual person). But most people forget that these people are still just that… people. Donald Trump, Theresa May, Scott Morrison, they are all just one person. One human just like you and me, and like many of us are fathers/mothers, brothers/sisters and sons/daughters. They hurt just like we do and are passionate just as we are and simply because they are in a position of power, people see them as someone to blame or direct their unhappiness about something. They are just trying to do their job as best as they seem fit just as we do when we go to work.

This concept of blame can extend from global politics into everyday life. From authoritative figures (such as doctors, teachers, even parents), to people in our day-to-day lives we are all only human and we are all just trying our best to get through and I assure you kindness goes a lot further than hate and bitterness.

 

The Benefits of Magnesium Bath Salts

I love a good bath especially after a long day/workout/anything really and a few months ago I was also reading up about what bath salts can do for you. I normally just like them because they are relaxing and some can smell AMAZING!! But then I saw that magnesium bath salts are actually beneficial for your body so win win!!

According to science it’s the second most abundant element in our bodies, and it would appear that the most effective and efficient method for magnesium absorption is through our skin. So to the bath we go to relax!

Magnesium also helps:

  • Relieve stress
  • Helps absorb nutrients better
  • Joint and pain relief
  • Skin hydration
  • Improves sleep
  • Improves mood and
  • Can lower your risk of diabetes

TV Shows That Have to be on your Watchlist

For many people, TV is the ultimate pass time and with the introduction of Netflix, Foxtel and many other media streaming creations, there is now an ever growing list of “must watches” and favourites on our list of things to watch. With that, (in no particular order), here are my top 5 all time favourite TV shows that if you haven’t watched, you need to get on to ASAP!

  1. The Sopranos

Ok, I lied. The only form of order that this post will have is that THIS show is by far and away, number 1. Set in the early 2000’s, in New Jersey, the show follows Italian mob boss Tony Soprano through his work and personal life. It definitely took me a while to get into it but OMG am I in love now!! Rolling Stone Magazine describes it as an “inspiring and terrifying mess” and is number 1 on its list of 100 Greatest Shows of all time. I think most TV gurus would agree with me when I say that this is the show that reinvented both HBO and TV as a whole. James Gandolfini who play the great man bloody nailed it and when of the greatest moments on my recent New York trip was unknowingly stumbling along a restaurant in Little Italy where the cast would spend most of their time, signed photos and plaques decorating the place. Filled with broken characters the show encompasses both comedy, crime, drama and sheer sheer emotion. Just like my good friends at Rolling Stone, The Sopranos remains the standard all ambitious TV aspires to meet.

2.   Breaking Bad

Chemistry teacher turned drug dealer, Breaking Bad is another classic. Walter White is (played by living legend Bryan Cranston) is both terrifying and painfully ordinary and in some ways, finally finds his life fulfilment with drug making and dealing. His partner in crime Jesse Pinkman is one of Walter’s ex students who is just making in life. The duo continue to climb the ladder in the drug world, much to the detriment of their families, friends and themselves. It is the classic show of a nobody entering the world of crime and corruption in order to become “somebody” and is an intriguing 5 season series.

3.    Seinfeld

Following the lives of Jerry, George, Kramer and Elaine in the bustling New York City. It’s light, it’s funny and a classic!

4.    Game of Thrones

DRACARYS BITCHES!!! Rolling Stone Mag describes it as “The Sopranos meets Middle Earth”. Set in the fictional world of Westeros, the Nobel families of Stark, Targayen, Lannister, Baratheon, Tyrell and as array of others battle it out for the throne in King’s Landing. Based on the George RR Martin books, there are so many storylines each more interesting than the next and it is definitely the ultimate fantasy TV series.

5.     The Wire

Another show that HBO bloody nailed! Following the drug game in Baltimore – building an entire city full of corrupt politicians, corner boys and cops who keep learning the biggest crime is “giving a fuck when it ain’t your turn to give a fuck.” Each season told a different story – the Barksdale gang in Season Three, the doomed school kids in Season Four. “After the first season, I thought, ‘There’s no way I’m being renewed,'” Simon told Rolling Stone. “But no one has told us to stop. I mean, any schmuck making over 50 hours of TV on what ails the American city and expecting people to watch it deserves what he gets.” The Wire gave us characters no one had seen before, from Idris Elba’s menacing Stringer Bell to Robert F. Chew’s endlessly quotable Proposition Joe. But Michael K. Williams created the ultimate badass with Omar, the shotgun-toting trench-coat avenger. As Joe told Omar, “A businessman such as myself does not believe in bad blood with a man such as yourself. Disturbs the sleep.” So many unforgettable moments all over The Wire – Bunk and McNulty canvassing a murder scene with one word of dialogue; Omar explaining his grief to bow-tied hit man Brother Mouzone (“See, that boy was beautiful”); Avon and Stringer on a balcony toasting a future they know will never come; Slim Charles holding the church hat of “a bona fide colored lady.” Yet there’s a sense of heartbreak all through The Wire. The game wins – they all lose.

Why the World Isn’t Actually as Bad as it Seems

Have you ever heard the son “I Wish I Was a Punk Rocker”?

Or the line where the singer says, “I was born too late. In a world that doesn’t care”?

It gives the era that we live in some pretty bad connotations. Either on the news or social media or in civil conversation, the phrase “I’m sad for the world we live in” or “I’ve lost my faith in humanity”, or “things are only going to get worse”. Now I understand how this article may make me sound. But I am NOT blind. I am aware that yes there is war, and yes there is poverty and corruption. For a long time, I too was apart of this group of people (majority of the world) who believed that mankind would inevitably be its own demise. In some ways I still agree with this notion.

But once I finished school and was forced to start formulating my own opinions about this wide world I live in, I learnt that although we have our problems (which planet doesn’t) it isn’t actually as bad as we always make it out to be. I’ve learnt that crucial global issues such as war, poverty and environmental issues are and always will be prevalent in any modern society; it always has been and it always will be. But does that make it ok? Of course not, it should always be on our list of things that we MUST resolve and I am in no way suggesting we should condone these issues. With all that being said, here are a few reasons why I believe the world isn’t actually entering its first apocalyptic state.

War and Conflict

Did you know that we are currently living in the most peaceful time in human history? Allow me to provide some perspective. By the end of 1940, the world had endured two World Wars, the greatest economic depression in living memory and was about to enter a nuclear race and the Cold War. Political conflict was rife and most of Europe was left in tatters. Fair to say it wasn’t pretty, fast forward to now, and research shows that there is a  startling decrease in worldwide violence, and the lowest mortality rate due to homicide on record. Following on from this, nations of the present have placed both global and local peace at the top of their priority list. This year alone we have seen North and South Korea try to amend their past issues and there are currently less wars and less people dying in wars than ever before.

 

Poverty

Something that is often a result of war and can absolutely ravish a community is poverty.  It’s always been an issue since humans first dealing in trade, and has been something that we have been striving to resolve. Now before I start on this section I just want to stress that I am aware that yes this is still a serious issue. However, since 2016, the proportion of the world’s population living in extreme poverty has actually fallen below 10%. For the first time ever, global economists have predicted that it IS actually possible to have poverty eradicated by 2030. For example, approximately 10 years ago, those living in poverty in China used to live on less than $1 a day. In 2012 however, this statistic has increased to $1.90 and the amount of people living like this in China has fallen by 88%. Now I’m aware that this still isn’t great but I would say that it is still a step in the right direction, and this is probably likely to reach a global level.

 

Innovation

Cast your mind back to the late 1400’s… Did you know that it took Christopher Columbus just under 2 months to cross the Atlantic sea? I don’t know about you but I’m sure if I spent more than a few days at sea I would lose my mind. Nowadays if we have loved ones living on the other side of the world, we can reach them within the space of a day meanwhile still keeping in contact with them 24/7 if need be. Following on from previous generations we are now able to cure diseases we never thought possible (polio, measles, whooping cough), and we can now send man to the moon and beyond. 100 years ago life expectancy was just 45 years old, now we see people living beyond 100 years! With modern medicine taking us further than we could imagine it has also given us the ability to create more than we could imagine!

Equality & Discrimination

Ok, so before I start, let me stress that I am fully aware this is still a very serious issue, but I do think that we have made some headway. Comparing now to previous times, we can successfully say that “gone!” are the days of segregation and since Martin Luther King jnr’s “I Have a Dream Speech”, people of colour, religion and sex have been widely accepted in both local and global communities. Now, women can climb the corporate ladder as high as they please and can also have a say in who will run their country; same-sex marriage is now legal in most countries and if you wish to change your gender, religion or even something simple as your political views you may do so without fear of being judged wrongly. Now, may I also say the above statements are addressing the MAJORITY. I cannot stress enough how much of a big deal this issue is as it is still so prevalent in today’s of society, but that’s not to say that progress hasn’t been made in this area.

 

More often than not, the media often portray to us a world of negativity and corruption. But does that mean we necessarily have to listen to it? So many of us are powered and influenced by love and compassion. It’s actually not in our nature, to discriminate, or to engage in war. Planet earth still has a long way to go but we must still be thankful for what we do have and proud of what we already have achieved.

23 Lessons from 23 Years

23 Years Old! Another year to jot down in the history books and another year where I proudly say I still stand tall. So there have been 23 years worth of tears, laughs, collapses of exhaustion and moments or pure elation. Here are 23 little lessons I’ve learnt from 23 years of life. Lessons that I have learnt from my parents, friends, family, teachers and people from all walks of life.

  1. It’s all about the little things/ moments.
  2. You actually don’t need to be like everyone else and that’s ok.
  3. You have to try and live in the moment.
  4. It’s amazing the difference a hug can make.
  5. Social media isn’t actually the real world.
  6. Try not to overthink it.
  7. You actually don’t always need to forgive and forget someone.
  8. You’re not the only one fighting this battle.
  9. HOWEVER, you are still within your rights to feel sorry for yourself sometimes.
  10. Laughter will forever be your salvation in all of this.
  11. This too shall pass…? Not necessarily.
  12. Kindness will always take you further and it certainly isn’t as draining.
  13. I promise that your courage will shine through when you need it.
  14. Forget all the petty things.
  15. Hard work might not always pay off, but at least you’re not left wondering.
  16. Never say something definitively without having all the required knowledge. Things are not always as they seem.
  17. See, do, eat, and live everything you can get your hands on!
  18. You are not the only one who believes that they are right, everyone has a VALID opinion whether you like it or not.
  19. You don’t have to do everything at once.
  20. Are you stressed? Can you control it? Regardless of the answer, why stress then?
  21. Nothing beats the food that you’re craving.
  22. You’re time on this earth is determined by how you spend it and how you remember it.
  23. Life’s a lot easier when you can have a laugh at yourself.

Deliciously creamy and zingy Salad Dressing

Salad is of course, a girl’s best friend! Whether it be a side or a main it’s just a little (or big) bowl of goodness! For me personally, there are two main things that make a salad just that bit more appetising.

  • Red Onion (but I think that goes with just about any dish)
  • A good salad dressing!

I love a salad with a bit of zing to it and the great thing about salad dressing is that more often than not they are low calories!

So after much experimenting I finally formulated the most delicious, creamy and healthy salad dressing possible.

Recipe:

  • 1 table spoon of olive oil
  • 1 table spoon of vinegar
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • Lemon (or lemon juice)
  • Half a teaspoon of Dijonaise Mustard

MIX (shake or stir)