This Week’s Bakes

This Week’s Bakes

green granny smith applesraisins in a bowlingredients in a bowl

I don’t need much of an excuse to mess about in the kitchen and this cold weather over the weekend had me pretty much setting up camp inbetween the kettle and the oven.

This recipe for Chewy Sultana Cookies by Deliciously Ella caught my eye and I had to try it out… no flour, no refined sugar and full of delicious fruits and filling oats. Plus, one massive bonus, is that the recipe doesn’t require any food processing. I had a majorly sad moment yesterday when I came to use my processor to find a massive crack in the bowl. I think the regular making of nut butters has taken its toll on my machine. As an aside, if anyone has a great recommendation for a pretty heavy-duty food processor, please leave me a comment. My current one is a KitchenAid and although I love it, I don’t think it’s up to the job. 

Each cookie has a healthy amount of grated apple (I substituted red apples for green), oats, sultanas (I used raisins), mashed bananas, cinnamon and honey. Once baked, these cookies have a lovely crunch to the outside and then a soft centre, which gave a nice hit of banana flavour.  We enjoyed them that afternoon and were happy in the knowledge that they were packed full of goodness.

Today, I’m going to indulge Mr D-F by making his all-time-favourite raspberry and pistachio brownies from the book Ready Steady Glow by Madeleine Shaw. All I can say is, if you can get your hands on the recipe – try them – you really will thank me! (…and Madeleine of course, who created them)!

I’ll post some photos on Instagram once I’ve made the brownies and if I can get to them in time before they’re eaten!

Have a great day x


This post contains an affiliate link. 


Plan Your Way To Healthier Meals ~ Free Downloadable Meal Planner

Plan Your Way To Healthier Meals ~ Free Downloadable Meal Planner

Many of you know that I’ve been trialling different menus and foods over the last year. We have embarked upon a primarily, whole-food based diet for two main reasons; enjoying experimenting being one of them and Mr D-F’s gluten and dairy intolerance being another.  We have also cut out all refined sugar – a big initial challenge but so worth while in the end.

Oh my goodness what a difference this shift has made to us both. More energy throughout the day and less cravings for snacks – I have always been a major grazer, no intolerance related effects for Mr D-F and the most amazing thing is that our meals are full of different flavours, packed full of nutrients and are in no way meagre! I must insert a link here to the first book that helped us to make this transition; Madeleine Shaw’s Get The Glow.

So this has all been great so far but what it has meant is that we’ve had to be mega-organised when it comes to shopping and meal prep, especially when we initially started out on this new food fun.  Most of our weekly menus up until this point have been scribbled on the back of a bit of paper, which would be totally fine, except that we’ve started to accidentally mis-read the menu meaning that some foods haven’t made it to the shopping list or ended up on there twice!

To solve this problem, I’ve created two menu planners, which are completely free for you to download and print as many times as you like. They have a space for each day of the week, so that you can plan out your breakfast, lunch, snack and supper. There’s also a space for the date, which I designed mainly for me, as I keep all of our old menus ensuring that if there was a particularly amazing week, we could recycle the ideas without re-writing!

I’ve made a Monday – Sunday version but the one I use the most is the Saturday – Friday version as we do our weekly shop on a Saturday and that’s when our menu for the week begins. You’ll find the links for the downloads below the photos.


Dorset Finca Meal Planner

Dorset Finca Meal Planner with favourite books

Click the gold link here for the Monday – Sunday planner: meal planner

Click the gold link here for the planner that starts on a Saturday: meal planner starting saturday

I hope you find these useful and if you want to keep updated with the various happenings on The Dorset Finca blog, please subscribe using the button on the right. x

This post contains an Amazon affiliate link.

Bedroom Highlights Reveal

Hi! I hope you’re having a lovely weekend. I am really excited that our bedroom is finally finished. We’ve been living in the new Finca for over two years but it has taken us so long to get the room just how we wanted it. Don’t get me wrong, there’s still the opportunity for new throws, pretty bed linen or more houseplants but, on the whole, the room is done.

How bad was it when we moved in? Not horrendous at all. However, the three-walls of fitted furniture weren’t quite our style, the paint was a bit pink for me and the woodwork needed a bit of TLC.

Would you like to see my favourite bits? I’ll explain as we go through and I’ll link all of the featured items at the bottom of the post in case you would like to check them out online.

I have to start with this beauty. I have wanted a Juju hat for our wall for a long time and the traditional hats from Cameroon are hard to source and can be seriously expensive. During one of my Instagram browsing sessions, I discovered Bamaluz Home and was so overjoyed to see the beautiful handmade Juju hats and wall hangings that were listed in their online shop. After a chat, I ended up having a Juju hat custom made in greys and browns so that it would fit in beautifully with our bedroom’s new colour scheme.

Although still a little bare (there’s definitely room for a houseplant here) we are still really loving our chest of drawers from Ikea. Currently on the top, we keep a picture of me when I was hunting for shells on Studland beach, our favourite coffee table books and our Amazon Alexa, which I love listening to rainforest noises on before I go to sleep. We had the shutters made for the window, which create a lovely dappled light and are possibly my favourite thing about the room… although it’s so hard to pick a favourite!

The colour on the walls is Farrow and Ball’s Elephant’s Breath – I’m sure you’re not surprised as you know me to be such a grey addict!

A little close up so that you can see the difference between my sort of coffee table book and Mr D-Fs sort of books. Can you tell which one is which?

This is one of the pieces of fitted furniture that we kept (above photo). It wasn’t necessarily something that we would have chosen but after some pondering, we decided that it was really handy and I now use this drawer section as a place to keep all of my bits that I need daily.

This possibly is a slightly random picture of my bedside table, however, this cuticle cream is the best thing ever. I have to talk about it as I use it every evening and I am sure that is has made my nails much stronger and they grow so quickly. I have a little evening ritual… rainforest noises on, YouTube videos playing and I put this cream on before I read my book. So relaxing!

As promised here are the links:

Juju Hat from Bamaluz Home

Photo frame from John Lewis, similar to this one

Amazon Echo in dark wood effect

Lego book

Dogs in Vogue book

Chanel book

Baskets from Wild Home

Burt’s Bees Cuticle Cream


Please note: some of the links above are affiliate links. 

What I’m Currently Reading ~ February

What I’m Currently Reading ~ February

Perhaps it’s the cold, dreary weather or maybe I’ve been trying to take a bit of time out just to calm my busy mind, but I’ve been getting into some wonderful books recently.  I thought it might be a nice idea to share what I’m reading each month and hopefully you’ll feel like leaving me a comment with new recommendations of what to read next! Sound like a plan? Right, let’s dive in.

I discovered this first book through someone that I follow on Instagram. The title and blurb of the book just called to me and it did not disappoint. It fitted exactly what I was in need of and it’s so good, that I’ve started reading it again for the second time!

It is: Mastering Your Mean Girl by Melissa Ambrosini

melissa ambrosini mastering your mean girl

I originally bought this on Kindle (as you can see above!) but I think that it is quite a good book to have in the real as I constantly was flipping back and forth trying to remember the good tips that she provides.

The ‘Mean Girl’ that she refers to in the title and throughout the book is your inner voice/critic/ego.  This book celebrates self love, self worth and advocates the important message that before you can give to others, you need to be overflowing with feeling great about yourself.

She discusses how to get the most out of relationships, the importance of working out what ‘healthy’ looks like to you and not being afraid to go there. Her messages really encourage you to go out and make the most of each and every day, which totally resonated with me. I would love Mr D-F to read it too, but I have prepared him that the book is more geared towards a female audience and I’m not sure how he will get along with the tone, however the messages are applicable to anyone.

Whether you love the ‘self-help’ genre of books or you’ve never gone there before, I really recommend the read. I LOVED IT!

Check it out on Amazon, here.

The other book I’ve been diving into is a bit of a throwback. I adored this book growing up…

my family and other animals

My Family And Other Animals by Gerald Durrell

I remember reading this in my teens and dreaming of a life in the sunshine, even then. The book chronicles the crazy antics of a family and the creatures and animals that they encounter along their journeys. It is a laugh out loud, beautifully written book which, if it isn’t already, will become a firm favourite on your shelves.

My favourite bit is the scorpions at the table… if you’ve read it, you’ll know exactly the bit I’m talking about!

What are your favourite reads? Can you recommend me something for March? x


Jewellery Inspired By Nature

I don’t know about you, but I’ve spent quite a lot of time this week, deliberating whether or not to go out into the garden. The sun has been shining (hurray!) but it has been incredibly cold.  Any attempts to enjoy a cup of tea in the outdoors have sent me scuttling pretty quickly into the warmth of the kitchen and the view out of the window instead.

There’s something about the sun shining that has me reaching for the seed packets, houseplants or anything else that links me to nature. So lucky then, that the lovely designers at R.A. Fourt Jewelry Co. sent me the most beautiful earrings to have a look at.

All inspired by nature and the outdoors!

rafourt drop earrings

These particular earrings are made from maple, walnut, ebony and mahogany wood before being adorned with small pieces of tumbled coral. Aren’t they amazing? I am IN LOVE!  I adore how the different sections of wood come together to create a striking pattern.

Based in Madison, Wisconsin, the R.A.Fourt team use their surroundings to inspire their minimalistic jewellery range. You can take a peek at their other beautiful items on their Etsy shop, here.

rafourt stud earrings

The studs in the picture above, are made from walnut, mahogany and my absolute favourite – Zebrawood!  They are so light and comfortable to wear and I get many admiring comments whenever I have them on.

Reece (the R. in R.A.Fourt!) spends much of his time, while not designing beautiful jewellery, making and repairing guitars so he’s pretty knowledgeable about working with natural materials and clearly has a real eye for striking design.

If you have time, I really recommend checking out the R.A.Fourt Facebook page, here.  There are some beautiful slide shows of their jewellery, but be prepared to do some mega swooning!

Let me know your favourites! x

Amit’s Amazing Guacamole Recipe ~ A Wild Home Post

Amit’s Amazing Guacamole Recipe ~ A Wild Home Post

Hi! Good morning! How are you doing?

I know that this blog is centred around the Dorset happenings on the Finca, but I get so excited about what is going on with our Wild Home family that I love to share it with you on here too. I thought you would especially love this post (mainly because it involves cooking and eating – what’s not to love, right?)

If you’ve been following us on Instagram, you may have seen that we’ve been having a bit of jolly time with the monkeys in the Wild Home garden. Currently, their favourite game is to knock down the avocados off of the enormous avocado tree. One morning, our Kenyan team woke up to find hundreds of avocados scattered over the ground as a result of the monkeys’ high jinks from the previous evening.

Instead of being too dismayed, the team gave the avos out to everyone they met and kept some back to make a large batch of guacamole! Wild Homie Amit’s recipe for guacamole is particularly delicious and I thought that this would be a great opportunity to share it with you.


You will need:

1 large, ripe avocado or 2 smaller ones

1 clove of crushed garlic

juice of 1/2 a lime

a sprinkle of chopped coriander

salt and pepper to taste

3 drops of Tabasco Sauce


Either by mashing with a fork or by using a small blender, blend the avocado, garlic, lime juice, coriander and Tabasco together until it is smooth and creamy. Add salt and pepper to taste before giving it one more quick blend.

There are so many incredible ways to serve guacamole.  My current favourites are either by having it spread on crispy toast or dolloped on freshly made spinach bread.



…and as for the monkeys? Currently we have some bananas hanging from the trees to try and entice them to spend their time up there more productively! I’ll let you know how they get on!

The New Year Bracelet Race

Hello and happy holidays! I have just published this post over on the Wild Home blog and thought that you might like to read it here too…

I thought that I would share with you a little challenge that the Wild Home team are going to take part in at the start of the New Year. It’s called ‘The New Year Bracelet Race’.

It’s a great way to bring a bit of fun to those darker and colder January days and is brilliant for connecting groups of friends and family, especially if they are spread around the globe.

… photo by Christian Mackie …

To start off with, you need to give a friendship bracelet to everyone who is taking part. These can be ones that you have made from embroidery thread, little bits of string with a shell strung on it or some of our Cheka or Gecko bracelets. Ideally, you want them to be soft so that they are comfortable to wear.

As this type of jewellery is so light, it can easily and affordably be sent to friends and family in different countries.

Wild home gecko bracelet

 … Wild Home Gecko Bracelet …

As you give out your bracelets, a start date for the challenge needs to be agreed upon. Ours is going to be on 1st January (to make it a New Year’s race) but you can choose any date you like.

On the specified date, everyone puts on their bracelet. It’s a nice opportunity to take a photo of your newly worn bracelet and share these with your group.

The main idea of the challenge is that the bracelets stay on for as long as possible (this can be months and months) and the winner of the race is the person whose bracelet has stayed on the longest.

Cheka Bracelet

… Wild Home Cheka Bracelet …

As you catch up with the members of your group throughout the challenge, you can compare your bracelets and make predictions as to who might win. The stories surrounding the moments when each person’s bracelet comes off are great for sharing. We had an experience one year, where a team member’s friendship bracelet started to unravel itself slowly over many months until it was just a single thread in width. It held on, in that state, for what seemed like ages and was given a loud cheer when it finally fell off, well worn and loved!

We will be sharing our progress on Instagram using the hashtag #WHbraceletrace – please feel free to join in and share your pictures (remember to tag them).