Sleep is never as easy as it sounds, is it?! Sometimes you just end up lying there for hours before you actually doze off, or (I'm guilty of this one) lie there on our phone watching YouTube videos and scrolling through our Facebook page. Well, now it's time to put the phone down and take on board some of my top tips for better sleep!
If you've ever tried sleeping in the day, you'll know how difficult it is when you have light shining through your curtains. Sleep in complete darkness for a better nights sleep. Or if you're one that has to have a night lamp on, try wearing an eye mask to bed. I've worn these in the past and I feel it helps me switch off. Notonthehighstreet.com have some super cute ones to choose from!
EXERCISE EARLIER IN THE DAY.
Try not to leave exercise until the evening as this can sometimes wake you up even more, preventing sleep. Motivate yourself every now and again to wake up super early and get that gym session in before you head to work, or even on your lunch break. You'll feel better for it, I promise!
HAVE A BED ROUTINE.
Going to bed at the same time each night (and waking up at the same time too) creates the perfect body clock. Make sure you head to bed a good eight hours before you're due to wake up, to ensure you're getting yourself plenty of z's and all of the energy you need for the day ahead.
It doesn't work for everyone, but personally I love to spray some of my This Works Pillow Spray on my pillow before I go to sleep. The gorgeous smell of lavender helps soothe my brain and reminds me of being back at a spa, lying on a water bed after a long and relaxing massage. Hehe!
DOWNLOAD AN APP.
So many times, I have gone to bed and my mind is still racing and thinking about the day. I find a great way to calm my mind is by listening to soothing music. I'm talking the sounds of birds singing, the sound of waves splashing or a fountain trickling. Just lie there, listen to these sounds and I promise you'll start drifting off in no time. Try downloading 'Relax Melodies' - it's free!
This week it was my friend's 18th birthday so we wanted to make it special for her! We baked a victoria sponge birthday cake and decorated it with lots of pretty pink icing and roses for a super girly feel! I was so pleased with the outcome I really wanted to share the recipe with you.
For the filling:
- 4 tbsp strawberry jam
- Whipped double cream
For the topping:
- few drops of pink food colour
- tsp vanilla essence
- 280g icing sugar
- 1-2 tbsp milk
- 140g butter
1. Preheat your oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4
2. Grease and line 2 x 20cm/8in cake tins: use a piece of baking paper to rub a little butter around the inside of the tins until the sides and base are lightly coated. Line the bottom of the tins with a circle of baking paper
3. Break the eggs into a large mixing bowl, then add the sugar, flour, baking powder and butter
4. Mix everything together until well combined. You can use a food processor to do this but I simply used a wooden spoon!
5. Divide the mixture evenly between the tins and smooth the surface of the cakes using a spatula
6. Place the tins on the middle shelf of the oven and bake for 25 minutes. Don't be tempted to open the door while they're cooking! But after 20 minutes do look through the door to check them.
7. Whilst you wait for the cakes to bake, you can make your icing sugar! All you have to do is mix all of the ingredients into a bowl!
8. Once the cakes are golden-brown and are springy to touch, you can remove them from the oven and set aside to cool in their tins for five minutes. Then run a palette or rounded butter knife around the inside edge of the tin and carefully turn the cakes out onto a cooling rack.
9. To then assemble the cake, place one cake upside down onto a plate and spread it with plenty of jam and cream!
10. Top with the second cake, top-side up! Spread your lovely pink icing sugar on the top and decorate how you wish!
I'd love to hear about your lovely cake creations or see any pics if you use this recipe!