Reflections on a lazy day off.

Sometimes, on those rainy days where I finally get an excuse to spend a day at home doing nothing besides eating, napping and watching TV – you know, the ones that you are just your lazy self, no plans, no intentions on going anywhere (unless there’s no food in the house), catching up on series and movies, or just playing XBox and reading – without having anyone to judge for wishing your life away because ‘God forbid I waste a day doing nothing with such a wonderful life waiting!’. Familiar with the feeling?

Yes, me too.

Truth is, I work in hospitality. My days are spent running between the two properties I manage, keeping staff in good spirits, guests happy and making sure the potential big problems don’t happen because action plans are in place in case something big goes down. Not that this always works – when you get to a certain point in your life, you always have to be counting on the plans b and c to be right up your sleeve, ready to salvage whatever they can for the day.

In the meantime, I have to always have a prepared justification for this and that for the big bosses in case I get a surprise question. I have an unhappy guest and I constantly try to think up of two or three options to give them in case I cannot solve the issues straight away. I go on with my projects and try to deliver them on time. I deal with my own restless nights and coffee infused mornings because sometimes, the sun just isn’t shining the way it should.

Needless to say, my home is the the place where I get out of the working suit, put on my PJ’s and try as hard as I can not to reply to my emails unless they’re urgent, take hot showers to clear my head. Wipe the signature smile of my face and get on with my things.

I am a customer service minded person. Besides the curtain orders, team motivation meetings, finance and budgeting and all that comes with my job, I am, in simple, a person that likes to host, make sure others are happy and well looked after. My days are so filled with other peoples’ problems that coming home is what a Yoga class must feel like to a free spirited person.

So, excuse me if 4 out of 6 times, I just want to be with myself.

As I get older, I see more and more these motivational phrases that life is to be enjoyed, don’t be at home all the time… I get it; we only in this earth once. We have to make the most of it.

But I believe a balance is needed. You don’t have to go out every weekend to prove to others and yourself that you are making the most of it.

You are allowed to have days for yourself. Days where you put music on and clean the bathroom on your underwear. Days where you move from the bed to the couch.

And that is okay. I mean, if all your off days are like this, sure, you should see someone because you might be suffering from a more emotional issue. But in a balanced way… You are fine. It is fine.

I am not sure if it is because I am entering the 30’s soon – yikes! But a lot of my friends are making a point of showing how great they are at living life. Every weekend, no exception, they will be posting a very motivational picture with a life changing quote and very creative hashtag, But you know what? I bet they are doing this in their home clothes eating a bowl of pasta.

Some days you get up and go for a run in the park, other days the most productive thing you will do is bake a cake. Some times you will be super productive and go on a city break, new restaurant, a play and you will feel very cosmopolitan. Other days it will be a victory to know if you washed your face or not in the morning. And that is fine.

Days for yourself are okay. We all need to recharge. Don’t be afraid to waste a few days doing something you love alone just because it isn’t seen as socially worthwile. As long as it is valuable to you, to your state of mind, it is enough.

Enjoy the days off!glfcydo

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Caramel Apple Blondie Cheesecake

Boy, have I got a new yummy recipe to show you!

I was scrolling through Tumblr and found myself drooling over this. I love cheesecake; so much between all desserts, that will always be my choice.

This is a blondie, it has cinnamon apples and, my favourite: CARAMEL.

Here’s the magic ingredients:

Apple Spice Blondie
3/4 cup butter
1 1/2 cup brown sugar
3 tsp vanilla
1 egg
1 egg white
1 1/2 cup flour
1/2 tsp cinnamon
3/4 tsp apple pie spice
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 apple, chopped
Caramel Cheesecake
16 oz cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup caramel sauce*
1/2 tsp apple pie spice
4 oz cool whip
Cinnamon Apples
1 1/2 apples, thinly sliced
2 tsp lemon juice
pinch of nutmeg
1 tsp cinnamon
4 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp butter
Cinnamon Whipped Cream
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/4 tsp cinnamon
*recipe for caramel sauce makes about 1 1/2 cups worth of caramel. Of the whole recipe about half of it was used  in the cheesecake and some of the rest you can drizzle it over the top of the cheesecake. You’ll end up with leftover caramel, they reckon
Now, I haven’t really tried it, but as a crazy baking lady I am definitely trying. If you do it first, please let me know!!!!
Here are the instructions:
1. Line the bottom of a 9 inch springform pan with parchment paper and grease the sides. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Melt the butter in a microwave safe bowl, then transfer to a mixing bowl.
3. Add brown sugar and whisk to combine.
4. Add the vanilla, egg and egg white and whisk until incorporated
5. In another bowl, combine dry ingredients.
6. Slowly add dry ingredients to wet ingredients until combined.
7. Fold in finely chopped apples.
8. Pour batter into springform pan and bake for 30-33 minutes.
9. Allow to cool for about 5 minutes, then remove to finish cooling.
10. Make the caramel sauce and allow to cool completely.
11. Once the blondie and caramel are cool, make the cheesecake. Beat cream cheese and sugars until smooth.
12. Add about 3/4 cup of caramel sauce and apple pie spice and mix until combined.
13. Fold in Cool Whip.
14. Place blondie back into the springform pan.
15. Spread cheesecake evenly on top of blondie, then put in refrigerator until firm about 3-4 hours.
16. Combine apples, lemon juice, nutmeg, cinnamon and brown sugar in a medium saucepan and toss to coat.
17. Add butter and cook apples on medium-high for about 15-20 minutes, or until at preferred softness.
18. Allow apples to cool for 10-15 minutes, then put on top of cheesecake.
19. To make cinnamon whipped cream, freeze a metal bowl and whisk attachment for 10-15 minutes.
20. Remove bowl from freezer, add heavy whipping cream, and whip on high speed until it begins to thicken.
21. Add powdered sugar and cinnamon and whip until it you get stiff peaks.
22. Pipe whipped cream around edges of cheesecake.
23. Drizzle more caramel sauce over finished cheesecake, if desired.
Oh my God, how much does this makes you want to go running to the kitchen??
Here’s some pictures from the blog I got this from:
Caramel_Apple_Blondie_Cheesecake5
Caramel_Apple_Blondie_Cheesecake7
You can see this and more here
Have fun baking!!!
Claudia xx