How To Make The Best Banana Bread! (And It’s So Easy!)

Welcome back to another recipe blog post! It seems a while since I last sat down to write one of these. We are more than aware of the banana bread trend that took the internet by storm at the beginning of lockdown. At that stage in lockdown, bananas were flying off the shelves so we couldn’t find any spare bananas to throw into a cake. My family eats them all before they can properly ripen, haha. The other day, however, I found some browning bananas and the first thought that came to mind was: banana loaf! This is my recipe for a light and fluffy sponge. I know some people prefer a dense banana bread, but I like it this way! 

If you use this recipe, please tag me in your recreations (@kittyjadeblog) I’d love to see! 

My mum still uses imperial measurements, and she is the lady who taught me to bake. Therefore these measurements are in imperial! They have very funny conversions, so I would recommend just measuring out in ounces if you can. 

Ingredients

  • 6oz caster sugar
  • 3oz margarine
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 3 very ripe bananas, mashed
  • 8oz self-raising flour
  • 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon

Method

  • Firstly, you’re going to want to prepare your ingredients. I recommend laying them all out on the table/countertop for time efficient baking. You’ll also want to get the three bananas are mash them up with a fork! 
  • In a separate bowl to the bananas, cream the sugar and butter. With a bit of music on, you can totally jam out as you do this!
  • Now add in the two large eggs, one at a time. This should bring the mixture to a runny consistency. Do make sure to fully combine the egg and butter/sugar mix before going any further!
  • Weight out 4oz of the flour and add to the wet mixture. Gently combine, and it should feel quite stiff to stir.
  • Then add in the other 4oz of flour! The reason I add in stages is so it’s easier to combine.
  • How easy was that? Now you just have to add in the mashed bananas and a teaspoon of cinnamon!
  • Next, preheat your oven to 150C Fan I do this after I’ve combined the mixture, to conserve energy.
  • Finally, line a loaf tin with greaseproof paper, pour in the mixture and place in the oven for an hour. Meanwhile, you can clear up the mess you have made!
  • Enjoy your scrummy banana cake!

Baking should not feel daunting, and I enjoy making simple recipes like this to encourage more people to bake. It doesn’t have to be complex to be delicious, as I’ve established with my previous recipes. I hope some of you reading will use this recipe and make yourself a banana bread! It’s such a therapeutic exercise, and the end result is simply delicious too. So why not take care of yourself today, and spend 20 minutes in the kitchen baking away? I can guarantee you will not regret it. And who knows, it might just inspire you to start your own baking blog. Don’t forget to tag me in your recreations!

What is your favourite type of cake?

Mine is probably carrot cake! Happy new week,

catherine x

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You can also save this post for later via Pinterest, if you want to bake this in the future!

The Uprise of Self-Care Sunday | Does It Negatively Affect Your Mental Health?

When I say ‘it’s okay to do nothing’, I genuinely mean it. If your social media feed looks anything like mine, you have probably heard this a lot. Some people host a Sunday event called ‘self-care Sunday’ which I think is an amazing idea. However, the mainstream connotations of self-care: baths, pampers and baking are not going to work for everyone. Now I have already written about this. But revisiting it a few months later is beneficial, since there are so many of you that have joined since then (thank you for 700 followers!)

Workaholism

I find that when people take you through their ‘self-care Sunday’, or ‘rest day’ they are still being mega productive. The workaholic mindset is worrying, especially among young impressionable people. Self-care Sunday should be for self-care: not for sharing it on your Instagram. Also, other people’s ideas of rest days might be more or less productive than your’s. So if you see someone going for a run on their rest day, that’s them. That makes them feel better. But if you sit on your bed eating chocolate raisins and watching Doctor Who all day, that can also make you feel better. Everyone has different ways of caring for themselves so please don’t compare them.

Is This The Real Life, Is This Just Fantasy For Instagram?

Telling your followers that you do take days off for self-care is important, they need to be aware that you’re not a Boss Babe 24/7. When influencers share their seemingly perfect self-care on the Internet, you speculate: are they doing this to take care of themselves or to post it on social media? Followers need to know that you’re not always working at the desk, but they also need to know that self-care isn’t just bubble baths and long walks.

For some people, going for a walk isn’t self-care. Diet culture perceives walking as a way to lose weight, and how can you enjoy an activity that intends for you to lose weight? There are so many people that can’t enjoy exercise because they’re only thinking about the end result, and disordered ideas that thinner is better. Rather than run for the fun of running, in the back of their mind (or the front) they’re thinking about how this will help them get fitter and potentially thinner. Glamourising weight loss is a whole other story.

I keep getting side-tracked. Wow, that shows how rusty I am with posts like this. Anyway, rest is a sub-category of self-care. Let me show you this:

Self care 

  • Eating well
  • Getting exercise
  • Doing your hobby
  • Journaling/getting out your thoughts in some sort of medium

Rest

  • Chilling in bed
  • Catching up on telly
  • Eating chocolate
  • Cuddling with your cat

Taking care of yourself also means getting things done, to unload unnecessary stress. You can’t eat chocolate and watch Netflix all day every day, without consequences of bad health. Similarly, procrastinating an essay until the night before it’s due because you’ve been binge-watching telly is not self-care. Although watching Netflix might be a way of taking care of yourself and relaxing, prioritising it over the work that needs to get done will not make you feel any better. Self-care means something different to each individual, but the main principle is taking care of yourself as the word states.

Scenario

It’s a Monday afternoon, last lesson of school. The teachers sets you an essay, to be completed by Friday. You’re so tired by the time you get home; you don’t get started yet. However, this pattern continues until Thursday. Now you’re in a panic! Only a few hours to get this essay sorted? Why didn’t you do it sooner?

You didn’t do it sooner because you prefer to watch Netflix in the evenings. And chilling out, according to your social media feed, is self-care. That excuse keeps you going.

But, is waiting until the last minute really self-care? No. Perhaps getting a chunk done, rewarding yourself with an episode of Stranger Things, then getting another chunk done would be self-care. Otherwise you’re spending the entire week watching Netflix with the pressing concern of completing the essay in the back of your brain. You can’t properly enjoy relaxing in front of the telly when you know something is due in a few hours.

I will explain procrastination in further detail, as a separate post. However this one is supposed to be about self-care. Sorry the tangents are a bit annoying; I can’t help it! Eventually this will get better, but at the moment I don’t want to erase any paragraphs because I feel like they contribute to the post. 

Self-care is individual. 

Even I, the one preaching this message, need a reminder sometimes. I need to be told that taking care of yourself is not solely watching Doctor Who and eating chocolate raisins. It’s getting my work done, then rewarding myself with Doctor Who.

Okay, and back to the first paragraph. It’s called cyclical structure, and perhaps it will improve the continuity of this article. Umm, commenting on my writing as I’m writing is a little bit strange. I don’t know: do you like it? Or would you prefer me to shut up and get the facts down?

“It’s okay to do nothing”

What is nothing to you? You can’t simply do nothing. You are always doing something. Now, watching TV is not nothing, is it? It’s watching TV. So if you spend an afternoon watching TV, label it as such. Do not fall into the trap of calling relaxing ‘doing nothing’. Because relaxing is something. Relaxing is a key part in taking care of yourself. Next time you sit in a bath, singing along to 1D and using a hairbrush as a microphone, call it SELF-CARE. Not NOTHING!

As Winnie The Pooh says, ‘doing nothing leads to the very best something’.

How do you practise self-care? Does it consist of journaling, exercise or TV?

I hope this post starts up a conversation. I would love to chat with you. Although it is dissimilar to my regular content, I did really enjoy writing it. Let me know your thoughts: whether you read the whole thing through or just skimmed over parts? I know I am not usually compelled to read through chunky posts, I much prefer ones laid out with questions and answers. What about you?

Take care of yourself.

catherine x

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20 Ways To Take Care Of Yourself | Self-Care Sunday | The Positivity Project

We’ve come to the end of The Positivity Project week! Though the launch is over, we’ll still be creating things together to help you feel more positive. However, you’ll be glad to hear I won’t be publishing a post every day. It was quite fun though, while it lasted! Do you think I should do something like this again, or was it too much to keep up with?

To conclude this week of positivity, Emily decided on Self-Care Sunday. I’ve been looking forward to this one, because I have so much to say about self-care. In this post I will be sharing my favourite ways to take care of myself. However, I did explain more in-depth what self care is in another blog post! I would really appreciate you checking that out. Remember that what works for me may not work for you, because we’re all different. Individuality is the beauty of the human race! Don’t change yourself in hope of becoming ‘perfect’. There’s no such thing. We’re all beautiful in our own ways. As a perfectionist, this is hard news to digest. But over the years I’ve come to terms with it, and I’m trying to accept myself for who I am. And, of course, accepting others for who they are too!

Quite simply, these are the things that I do to take care of myself:

    Sticking to my routine
    Not lying in (kind of links in with the previous one)
    Eating well, but also allowing myself snacks now and then.

Pre-isolation: eating a pizza with some friends as a treat! Why on Earth not?

    Not procrastinating!
    Getting dressed well everyday, to avoid feeling lazy.
    Reading books. The more, the better!

    Spending less time on screens.
    Avoiding social media, only for blog related things.
    Spending time with the people I love.
    Keeping in touch with the people I love when I can’t see them (see yesterday’s post for more on that!)
    Having a bath then putting on cosy PJs

    Reminding myself of my goals and aspirations
    Journaling 
    Allowing myself to scroll through Pinterest and look at inspiring quotes
    Remembering that I can’t please everyone
    Watching Harry Potter while knitting

    Telling myself that self-care isn’t selfish, but it leads to me caring more for other people!
    Practising my cello and usually zoning out because I get so consumed in the music that the outside world no longer matters to me!
    Doing something I enjoyed as a child, like Lego, drawing or colouring (yes I still do those things occasionally)

This is a photo from Monday’s post (Mindfulness Monday) where the prompt was to do some colouring!

    Setting out clothes for the following day

I really appreciate those of you whom have read every single post of mine this week! It means the world – your support is always appreciated. Don’t forget, after reading all of these lengthy posts, to step away from the screen. Though being active online is a huge part of my passion, it’s not always necessary. We need to step away sometimes, and appreciate the moment. There’s no time like the present!

How will you take care of yourself today? After commenting below, will you take a moments rest from social media?

Thank you for sticking by me this week, and sharing with me all of your wonderful positivity journeys. Please show some support to the wonderful creator, Emily, whom without I would be seriously lacking inspiration. Her blog is absolutely stunning, along with her Instagram (click the links if you have time!)

erin x

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These Aren’t Your Regular Self-Care Tips

Don’t feel guilty for taking a break. Some of you say sorry and write a whole post of apology… You really don’t need to! Most breaks from social media benefit a person’s mental health and that’s brilliant. I think we all should be spending less time on technology – especially now brighter season’s are coming (for the northern hemisphere at least). Life is for living, not sitting in your room trying to gain followers. Instead of scheduling breaks, just take them when you need to. In Winter I tend to blog a lot because there’s nothing to do outside! However, when spring comes, I go on walks and enjoy the world around me. You should try it too. 

A lot of social media is now filled up with ‘self-care’ and ‘how to be happy’. Though those accounts can bring smiles to people’s faces, nothing feels better than experiencing the warmth of sun on your face. No bubble bath can beat the satisfaction of ticking a task off the to-do list. 

Self-love comes in many different forms. Getting things done is more kind to yourself than watching Netflix.

Please do what is right for you. Don’t feel that you have to journal because you have a lot of thoughts on your mind. Just because working out benefits your friend, doesn’t mean it’s going to benefit you. Different things work for different people. These differences make us all unique and, as they say, variety is the spice of life.

I’m not going to apologise that this post is cheesy. I’m not going to let any of you apologise for taking care of yourself. 

erin x

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