Standing on Hallowed Ground | Outfit

Navy blue lace top from Primark with black bodycon skirt from H&M outfit post worn by francesca from francescasophia.co.ukNavy blue lace top from Primark with black bodycon skirt from H&M outfit post worn by francesca from francescasophia.co.uk
HP Deathly Hallows Necklace: Sawyer & Scout
Tee: Primark
Vest: New Look
Skirt: H&M
Occasionally, you have one of those days; there's only an hour-long lecture to get you out of bed, no plans for the evening, rain cascading maliciously, and even making yourself a hot chocolate whilst you wait for your flatmates to return from their various commitments seems like too much effort.
close up of the harry potter deathly hallows necklace from sawyer and scout, worn by francesca of francescasophia.co.uk
And then something magical happens; rooting around in the back of my drawer this morning, I remembered something downright exciting; I hadn't worn my brand-spanking new Harry Potter Deathly Hallows pendant at university! Which, obviously, lead to a strong need to build an entire outfit around it...
Am I the only one who does this?
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Little White Tee | Outfit

'little white tee' t-shirt and front zip skirt worn by francesca from francescasophia.co.uk
Tee: H&M
Skirt: H&M
Necklace: Forever 21
Bangle: H&M


It's been all go, the past couple of days - I moved back into my university flat on Saturday, the last of the flatmates to return, which, naturally, meant a vast deal of alcohol was consumed, and some late-night brownie/cookie hybrids concocted, whilst Sunday was spent clinging desperately onto the final vestiges of freedom, some serious retail therapy, and a good old Pret lunch - what's not to love?

I'm actually quite surprised with myself for returning for my second semester, in all honesty; being in London for a whole month made me realise just how much I missed my hometown, and I now know what I should have seriously worked out before I started here - I don't want to be studying psychology, not to the extent that I'd have to to get the 'dream job'. However, logic prevailed, and between quitting my course, wasting all that time, effort and money, being unemployed and having nowhere to live, or coming back to a place that, okay, isn't as fast-paced as I'm used to, but is a beautiful city, and flatmates who I am so incredibly lucky to have, who've quickly become amazing friends, the latter option seemed the best solution.

I could have been a page straight out of the latest H&M catalogue, today, but I feel like that sums me up pretty well, regardless. I fell intoxicatingly in love with this tee from the moment I saw it, and the skirt soon, somehow, found its way into my basket (completely by accident, of course, happens all the time)!

Is everyone else back at university by now? How's the new semester treating you?
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Peanut Butter Granola Bars | Low Calorie Recipe

peanut butter granola bars lying on a blue plastic tupperware lid in a pile
As anyone who follows my Instagram or Twitter will probably have noticed, 2013 for me has, so far, been a complete and utter health kick. I've seriously cleaned up my 'diet' (I do hate that word...), and have been attempting to 'eat clean' for at least 80% of my time, and so far, it's going pretty well.
The only downside? Well, being a student, I'm not exactly made of money - and whilst I am starting to fall in love with both the ginger bread and banana bread varieties of Nakd bars (after a slightly rocky start - I really don't recommend any of the 'chocolate' flavours...), they're far from cheap to keep on hand as a regular snack, and I started brainstorming one or two clean, homemade snack ideas of my own to fill the void.
peanut butter granola bars having just been cut, still in their disposable baking tray
These peanut butter oat granola bars work out at around 18p each if you use the brands I've suggested (cheaper if you don't mind them not being 100% 'clean'), and make the perfect accompaniment to your mid-morning cup of coffee (or tea, if you're going one better than me and cutting back on caffeine!) - satisfying, slightly sweet, and guilt-free, with only 148 calories, 14g carbs, 8g fat (the good kind!) and 5g of protein per bar*.
peanut butter granola bars lying on a blue plastic tupperware lid in a pile
I used Waitrose's 'Essential' wholenut peanut butter for this recipe, as a lot of regular supermarket varieties tend to use sugar/flavourings/preservatives, and I generally prefer this 'nuttier' tasting one. It's nowhere near as sweet as conventional peanut butter, so I'd recommend trying some on its own before using it for a recipe! I also recommend Flahavan's Irish porridge oats, which are 100% wholegrain, and Waitrose pure clear squeezy honey for this recipe, but obviously, if you can't get hold of these brands/already have some in your house you'd like to use up etc, then just make sure you change the nutritional information accordingly, especially if you're counting calories!
peanut butter granola bars in a white plastic tupperware bowl, ready to be stored
They're delicious, satisfying, and a much healthier option than most store-bought granola/snack bars, and so so simple to whip up. Personally, I store them for about two weeks in an air tight container, and throw one into a food bag if I know I'm going to be out for the day - yum! 
Peanut Butter Oat Granola Bars:
Makes 16 bars.
Ingredients:
  • 80g oats
  • 169g honey
  • 258g peanut butter
  • 1tbsp Truvia (or whichever no-calorie sweetener you prefer)
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
Method:
  1. Preheat your oven to 170°.
  2. Spread the oats evenly onto a large baking tray, and place in the oven to toast for 10 minutes. Whilst they're toasting, measure out the peanut butter and honey into a bowl.
  3. As soon as the oats are toasted, pour them (whilst hot!) into the bowl with the peanut butter and honey. The heat will help the ingredients loosen up a little, making it easier to combine them. Add the Truvia and cinnamon.
  4. When the ingredients are combined, spoon the mixture into a brownie tin (I use these disposable ones for convenience), and spread it out evenly.
  5. Bake the mixture for about 12-15 minutes, or until it's just starting to brown - they might appear to be a little soft in the middle, but they'll harden as they cool. 
  6. Allow to cool for 5-10 minutes, then cut them into 16 bars, before leaving to cool completely. They can be stored for around 2 weeks in an airtight container.
Calories: 148 | Carbs: 14g | Fat: 8g | Protein: 5g*
* Calorie and nutritional information calculated using the MyFitnessPal Recipe Calculator, and using the specific brands mentioned above.
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