Lockdown, but make it fancy

Ready to up-level your lockdown life? We’re a few weeks in and the ennui has definitely set in, or at least it has over here! So we’re on a mission to make homelife a little more like the good life.

Bust out the crystal!

Saving those fancy glasses and fine china for the special guests? Skip that. You are special. And at this point, any night is special. It’s amazing what a difference a little luxury makes when you’re sitting down to dinner at the dining table every night. Right now, we’re dialling up pre-dinner drinks with Luigi Bormioli’s Diamente Resiling glasses. Crystal baby! Not old school, heavy crystalware that your grandma has (although vintage crystal has a special place in our hearts), this SON.hyx lead-free crystal is laser cut, lightweight and best of all, goes straight in the dishwasher. If you’re after something simpler, the Palace range might be more up your alley.

Sharpen your skills

Eating cereal for dinner? No judgement here, but we’re using enforced dining at home to dust off the chopping boards and brush up on a few skills. Now’s not the time for long grocery lists which seem to go hand in hand with being creative in the kitchen, but that’s where Hello Fresh comes in. With all ingredients delivered and instructions for the most basic of home chefs, it’s a lot easier to make your own meals than it used to be. Each week there’s 28 different dishes to add to your box, you can take it easy with 15 minute Fast & Fresh items or go fancy with Gourmet dishes like a sirloin and bacon mushroom sauce. We asked the Hello Fresh team for a couple of tips to help us up-level: Taste as you go (keep an eye on the instructions for suggested measurements), add dry herbs at the beginning as they take longer for their flavour to develop, save fresh herbs until the end, prep first (we interpret this as rope someone in to be your sous chef and chop for you), and make sure you know your kitchen, some ovens run hot, others run slow!

Outsource as needed

Always a time and a place for outsourcing and we say this is it. If you’re celebrating an extra special occasion (hello lockdown birthdays), there are plenty of restaurants that have busted out the takeaway containers for the first time ever. If you’re looking for everyday meals, we’ve been testing out the MACROS menu, created by chefs and dieticians, packed with protein, wholefoods and as we found out, plenty of flavour. Now what does that actually transfer to when it hits your plate? The ready made meals arrive fresh so they only need 2-3 minutes in the microwave before you’re plating up the likes of chicken biryani with green beans and beef bourguignon with herb mash – all dairy and artificial sweetener free. Midweek luxuries like a hearty portion of lasagna and a Friday night beef brisket get us through the week without reaching for the chips and chocolate. There’s different types of plans to choose from, whether you’re after family-friendly, plant-based, muscle-building and weight-loss.

Save time for self care

Last but not least, it’s time to make time for you. Whatever that means to you goes, whether it’s long walks, yoga in the backyard, long baths, wine! For us, it’s been a chance to give our skin some serious TLC. We’ve started off with Bathing Shed’s Fresh Start, a bar of soap that puts soap on a whole new shelf of our bathroom cupboards. The bar is made from Tasmanian cold-pressed hemp seed oil, using traditional Japanese methods. To be honest we felt fresh just unwrapping the bar from its perky packaging, with the zesty lemon, eucalyptus and peppermint essential oil blend hitting our noses when pulling off the second layer of packaging. Even better, this is a Melbourne-based brand, so your self care is supporting local!

And given how long we’re staring at ourselves on Zoom calls, it’s serious hydration time, which calls for the big guns. Clinique’s Moisture Surge 100H Auto-Replenishing Hydrator is the stuff of skim hydration dreams. The gel-cream is the latest in the brand’s Moisture Surge line, which has been hydrating skin since the 80s. This time around, you get 100 hours of hydration as the Aloe Vera Bio-Ferment and Hyaluronic Acid absorbs into the skin and continues to work even after you’ve washed your face. Now that’s efficiency! A lot of us like to apply our skincare at night, but you can use this during the day for a little boost in between work calls by touching it onto your bare skin or over the top of makeup. With a whipped gel consistency, it will do the job for all skin types. You’re welcome.

Skincare, self care, sous cheffing, wining, dining – there are plenty of ways to fill your lockdown ways with a little luxury!

About the author

Lisa used to use Sydney as a base to drop off souvenirs before heading off on the next adventure but these days she’s got her feet almost on the ground, with a desire to try every high tea in Sydney, and a cute cavoodle puppy at home. Travel writer, photographer and Kitchen Aid freak, she loves to eat, bake and write.


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