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No matter how much we may have complained about it at the time and how often we hear our kids moan about homework, the first few days of September generally have us harking back to our school days.

Perfectly ironed uniforms, brand-new stationary and the dogged belief that this year would be different has us longing for days gone by, so we can't get enough of these Airbnb listings which have come up trumps for anyone missing their schooldays.

Known for homes with a twist, Airbnb are giving their guests the chance to stay in a number of stunning former schoolhouses around Ireland, and it's hard not to be enchanted.

From Waterford to Donegal, these houses are spot-on if you find yourself feeling a little jealous of the kids this month.

1. Headfort House, 60 bed school

Located in Kells, Co Meath, this is the school we wish we had gone to!
 

 

2. Luxurious 18th Century Schoolhouse

Located in Gort, Co Galway, this is the quaint little schoolhouse our grandparents told us about.
 

 

3. Schoolhouse Cottage at Lisnavagh

Located on the border of Wicklow and Carlow, this 19th century schoolhouse has stunning views of the Wicklow mountain, and we're officially sold.
 

 

4. Old School House, Glencolmcille

Located in the wild and breathtaking landscape of Donegal, the Old School House Meenacross is the perfect place when you want to get away from it all.
 

 

5. Wing of Old School House

Located on the coast, this stunning Waterford schoolhouse was built in 1745, and is the perfect base for day trips to some of Ireland's most scenic spots.
 

 

Ladies. it's time to clear your diaries – these houses await.

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It's Monday, it's cold and very few of us relished the idea of going to work this morning.

But struggling with Monday Morning Blues has nothing on the feeling of despair which descends upon many when their alarm goes off to signal another day in a job they hate.

And while we've all been trained to appreciate a regular income, a recent study has suggested that a lack of job satisfaction has a more negative impact on your mental health than being unemployed.

Reflecting on trends seen since the recession, the study, which was published in the journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, explores the correlation between psychosocial factors and the job in which an individual is employed.

The study, which analysed the experience of more than 7,000 respondents, sought to prove that psychosocial characteristics –  such as unfair pay, control levels and job complexity – can have as detrimental an effect on an individual's psyche as a period of unemployment.

Commenting on the study, lead author, Peter Butterworth, explained: "Those who moved into optimal jobs showed significant improvement in mental health compared to those who remained unemployed."

"Those respondents who moved into poor-quality jobs showed a significant worsening in their mental health compared to those who remained unemployed."

"The health benefits of becoming employed were dependent on the quality of the job," the study explained.

"Moving from unemployment into a high quality job led to improved mental health however the transition from unemployment to a poor quality job was more detrimental to mental health than remaining unemployed."

We know there's rent to make, bills to pay and loans to cover, but it's something worth keeping in mind, right?

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Even though the world gets busy celebrating us, we get a day off work and are basically encouraged to sip up from sun up, St Patrick's Day isn't actually all it's cracked up to be.

Like New Year's Eve, the day of our Patron Saint invariably involves sidestepping pools of vomit, losing your friends and judging those who have taken to the holiday with gusto.

There's not an Irish person among us who wouldn't fear being labelled a buzzkill, but when it comes to March 17, more and more of us are admitting that we're actually grand with that label if it means we can avoid wearing a plastic arse and having someone puke on our shoes in public.

Here are 8 reasons why St Patrick's Day is… well… urgh whatever.

1. All major towns and cities are basically brought to a standstill with the help of a parade.

Yes, we envied those cheerleaders back in the day, but right now these gals from Georgia are the only things standing between us and our sanity.

2. You will see something that actually makes you question your fellow countrymen.

Blokes wearing nothing but tricolour mankinis in the middle of our capital's street is not something we need in our lives.

3. Society makes you feel the need to mark the day in some way, so you can't even enjoy your day off on the couch without feeling guilty.

Surely playing the National Anthem before your Netflix binge is enough?

4. You will see something that reminds you that alcohol and bodily functions don't mix.

"Don't look now, but that girl is puking into her own handbag."

5. You will hear the term St Patty's Day used at least one… unironically, we might add.

And it will make your teeth feel itchy and your toes feel curly.

6. You will see something that will make you want to cry a little despite your best efforts.

A dignified-looking elderly man with a shamrock pinned to his lapel is enough to make you weep.

7. The fiddly-diddly music belting out of every establishment loses its appeal very quickly.

"They're bloody murdering Raglan Road."

8. You will be forced to watch your fellow citizens confirm the archaic stereotypical perception once held of us.

"Ah yeah, vomit on yourself there before starting a row with that lamppost, good man."

Can we sit this one out?!

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January 6th, also known as Little Women’s Christmas or Nollaig na mBan, was once considered the only day of the year when women were given an official break from the monotony of housework to meet with female friends and relatives in an effort to celebrate their own little Christmas.

Put simply, on the Feast of the Epiphany, men were left to deal with the gaf while the women folk deserted the house to eat, drink and sing like good things. They were, in other words, officially down for the sesh on January 6.

Nowadays, we use Nollaig na mBan as an opportunity to recognise the countless achievements of women, both past and present, in Irish society, and see January 6 as the perfect time to celebrate women's contribution to the history and culture of the State.

So, with that in mind, here are just 13 reasons why us women are pretty damn amazing.

1. We endure periods and childbirth – nuff said.

"Mother Nature is no mother of mine."

2. We understand, accept and embrace the healing power of a good cry.

"I can feel it building up inside me so I'm just going to go watch a few homecoming clips on YouTube."

3. We will always let a sister know when she's trailing toilet roll from her shoe or rocking a random price tag… whether we know her or not.

"Do not walk a step further. I got you."

4. We instinctively know when a friend is feeling low… even if she hasn't confided in us yet.

"Call me crazy, but are you OK? You've only tagged me in three memes this week,"

5. We endure stirrups and speculums at least once a year all in the name of our health.

"I just had my smear test, so excuse me while I question my wide-set vagina and heavy flow."

6. We deal with retailers' blatant inconsistencies when it comes to our dress size.

"That crowd would have you think I was the size of a shed, so no, I won't be going in there."

7. We instinctively know when we're being lied to.

"His left nostril flared. Busted."

8. We have the ability to text, talk, eavesdrop and slug a gin all at the same time.

"Would you listen to your man next to us? Oh,and have a read of this before I send it."

9. We know the value of a sentimental message on a friend's birthday.

"Where do I start? It was Junior Infants and you walked in…"

10. We have higher pain thresholds than our male counterparts.

"Ah, I'm grand! Sure, I didn't need that lung anyway."

11. Our seratonin levels are higher and more sensitive than mens' which mean we get much, much more pleasure out of chocolate than they do.

"Give me that family-size! It's wasted on you."

12. We know the horror when a hair wash day coincides with a gym session day.

"You're joking, babes? Listen, if I were you I'd go for the shampoo and feck the work-out."

13. We understand the joy when a friend connects with a hairdresser on an emotional level.

"And she gave you EXACTLY what you asked for, you say?!"

 

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Adele revealed that losing weight has had a positive impact on her life. During a trip to Anguilla, the Rolling In The Deep singer told fans that she has lost something like 100lbs and it has been a “crazy positive experience” for her, People reports.

The singer has always been stunning, but if losing weight has made her feel happier and healthier then power to her.

The Rumour Has It singer has reportedly been following the Sirtfood diet, but what does it entail?

We understand that dieting isn’t for everyone and many diets can be extremely dangerous, but the sirtfood diet actually sounds quite healthy.

It basically involves eating food that is high in sirtuin activator. Food includes apples, blueberries, green tea, strawberries, red onion, rocket, walnuts, capers, parsley, green tea, soy, citrus fruits and kale.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Adele (@adele) on

Red wine, chocolate and coffee are also classed as sirtfoods but solely indulging on these certainly won’t help.

During the first week of this diet you need to cut your daily intake of calories to 1000, eat one sirtfood rich meal and drink three green juices.

The week after you boost your calories to 1500 per day and eat two sirtfood meals and two green juices.

After that it is up to the individual to set out a plan that works best for them, as long as your diet is rich in sirtfoods.

The sirtfood diet certainly doesn’t sound half as bad or as harmful as most diets out there. We may have to follow in Adele’s footsteps and give it a go.

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Leaving your warm and cosy bed on a dreary morning is one of the worst feelings ever. We'd honestly kill to curl up for an extra ten minutes but work beckons.

If the thought of pulling a sickie is the only thing getting you through right now, it's probably best you draw on the results of a study which established the best time to do it.

According to a market research study, if you want to be in with a good chance of convincing your boss that a day in the scratcher is the only thing for you, then you better send that mail at 06.38 on a Tuesday morning.

The study, which harnessed the experience of 1,000 employees, established that this particular day is more likely to elicit sympathy from your boss, unlike a last-minute Monday or Friday sickie.

Oh, and if you're wondering what your excuse should be, wonder no more.

The bog-standard 'upset stomach' is your go-to guy in this case because, really, who wants any further details on that one?!

Make of that information what you will, ladies.

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As an adult, Halloween is a pretty good excuse to make a holy show of yourself and get away with it, but as a kid, Halloween was life's saving grace between summer and Christmas.

Just when you thought you were going to burst with the boredom of the new school year, Halloween reared its head, and suddenly life was worth living again.

Black bin liners were unrolled, spiders with pipe cleaner legs were hung up, and your mam began ranting about the dangers of bangers for the guts of a month.

And once the big night rolled around, we all went through the same nine stages with military precision.

1. The parents' rules

Your parents will have laid a few ground rules when it came to sticking with your siblings while roaming the estate, but God love them if they thought you were listening.

"I'll keep an eye… but I can't promise anything, Mam."

2. The real rules

Once far enough from your driveway, you and your siblings immediately split up for fear of being seen with each other.

"Go on! You'll be grand, just don't go near that house with the broken gate. I heard your man hasn't left it in 54 years."

3. The costume

It seemed like a good idea at the time, but wandering the estate in nothing more than a bin liner over your vest and pants was your mother's biggest parenting fail.

"Can you see my knickers? They've puppies on them."

4. The explanation for your costume

No matter how much effort your mother put into that bad boy, you were still forced to tell every neighbour what you were.

"I'm a mutant from Outer… oh whatever, I'm a binliner."

5. The estates you weren’t allowed to visit

If the sibling rule was important, the 'not going further than your own estate' was an absolute deal breaker.

"If I hear you went further than the front green, there'll be absolute war, do you hear me?"

6. The neighbours who gave good stuff

Every year you made a beeline for the house that gave out full size chocolate bars, cans of Coke and share-size crisps.

"Ring again. She's only pretending she can't hear us."

7. The neighbours who gave apples

Every year you knocked in because you thought they might have come to their senses this time around.

"Ah Jaysus, seven monkey nuts?! I'm putting them back through her letterbox."

8. The bold kids

If you thought you were pretty schlick for going past the green, you had nothing on these kids who didn't even bother to dress up and waited for eejits like you to show up so they could banger the bejaysus out of you.

"Pretend you haven't seen them, but don't turn your back. That's right, let's all reverse up the road,"

9. The triumphant return for the second bag

The years you have to return to your own home for a second carrier bag such was the extent of your haul is one for the memory books.

"Only the first two roads, Mam. Better give me a few if this keeps up… no, I'm not done!"

 

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Most Irish Mammies are utterly devoted to St Anthony, so chances are you've been advised to speak to the man himself when you're tearing the house apart in search of a missing earring or set of keys.

However, it looks like we may be giving good ol' Anthony a break if we're to follow the advice of researchers at the University of Aberdeen.

According to recent research, the vast majority of us spend too much time searching for missing items in uncluttered areas of our homes when logic would suggest we should hone in on the messier areas of any room.

Conducting a study into the theory, researchers used an eye tracking device when asking participants to find targets in two different visual scenarios.

The findings established that instead of using our peripheral vision to sweep over 'easy' areas, we actually devote all our attention to the tidier areas and tend to avoid areas of clutter… which makes little to no sense in reality, but that's humanoids for you.

"If you're looking for your keys, you should focus on the areas with the most clutter because if they were somewhat more obvious, you would have found them by now," said the study's author Anna Maria Nowakowska.

So, basically we make the whole process harder for ourselves. Good to know.
 

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Move over hygge – there's a new lifestyle trend in town and it speaks to us on a whole new level. 

While we're all about self-care, cosy socks and cups of herbal tea, all the planning and preparation that goes into these little moments of 'me time' can actually defeat the purpose of them all together. 

And it's for that reason that we reckon Fjaka is going to be huge for 2019. 

According to Metro, the Croatian term 'Fjaka' (pronounced fyaka), simply means to embrace the feeling of doing absolutely nothing. 

Now, I don't know about you, but that's one lifestyle trend I can definitely get on board with. 

In order to achieve Fjaka you need to rid your mind of any and all distractions and stop thinking about all the things you need to do. 

Aspire for nothing. Need nothing. Want nothing. Simply enjoy a few moments with your mind completely at rest. 

It's all about giving yourself permission to forget about life's little hiccups and reminding yourself that it's okay to do nothing

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Upcycling in every sense of the word is on the rise, what with climate breakdown becoming an apocalyptic-level problem and sustainability on everyone's minds.

New One4all research shows that Irish adults are finding creative ways to make homes their own, with 48 percent of Irish people having upcycled an item from their house.

65 percent of homeowners nationwide have renovated their home, with the kitchen being the most popular part of the property to remodel. Weirdly, April is the most coveted time for home improvements.

According to the survey carried out by One4all, safety of the property is the most important factor home-dwellers in Ireland, followed by the neighbourhood in which the property is located, and thirdly, having an outdoor area or garden space.

Seeing as the housing crisis has us all feeling especially glum, most of us are comfortable with sticking where we are currently. Nine in ten of those queried claimed they 'feel at home' where they live.

Is this because they can't accord to buy another home or rent in another spot, though? Either way, Irish people are making homes their own.

While the kitchen is the most common room to be remodelled, the bathroom came in second place and the garden came in third. 

December is the quietest month of the year for home updates, most likely because of all those parties being thrown during the festive season.

The renovations lasted between one and three months for 28 percent of people, but it took between six months to a year to complete the works for ten percent of people.

44 percent of those polled say they are ‘somewhat happy’ with their home at the moment, compared with 39 percent who say that they are ‘very happy’.

Overall, men in Ireland rate their current happiness with their home higher than women do, with 86 percent of them chuffed compared to 81 percent of women.

The research states that most women would change the interior of their home if money wasn't anything to worry about, but men would choose to increase the size of their house instead.

When it comes to D.I.Y, Ireland is a nifty nation with almost 1 in 2 (48 percent) revealing that they have upcycled an old item in their home.

For most of those polled, the purpose behind their upcycling project was to make something old look nicer and new. A One4all gift card to get a mate who's gaff needs a boost would be an unreal idea.

Making something more personal was the second most popular purpose for upcycling amongst respondents, with 95 percent of those who upcycled an item saying they enjoyed the project.

 

tim reno GIF by Channel 7

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We all want to live a long and happy life. Experts will recommend keeping fit, eating well and monitoring stress, but 95-year-old twins, Lil Cox and Doris Dobday beg to differ.

Britain’s oldest twins have revealed the secret behind living such a long life. The duo appeared on This Morning to share their words of wisdom with the public and their tricks are certainly unusual.

The sisters, who live across the road from one another, said that eating raw sausage sandwiches is one of their biggest secrets.

Image may contain: 3 people, people smiling, people sitting and table

Doris stressed that no sex and drinking Guinness are her secrets to a lengthy life. This Morning host, Holly Willoughby asked, ‘Why no sex?’ to which Doris quipped, ‘Well, I don’t have a husband!’  

The famous sisters have conjured up quite the massive fan base since celebrating their 95th birthday. They run a Facebook fan page where they post updates and videos, much to the delight of their followers.

According to their Facebook profile, the sisters enjoy trips to the bingo, shopping, going out for meals and the theatre.

Doris was happily married for 65 years and did not have any children while sister Lillian has five grown-up children, 13 grandchildren and 19 great-grandchildren in total.

We’re not sure how we feel about no sex, Guinness and raw sausage sandwiches but it’s certainly worked for Lil and Doris.

Feature Image: Lil&Doris

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Bestselling authors and founders of The Happy Pear, David and Stephen Flynn, have teamed up with award-winning facialist, founder of The Skin Nerd, Skingredients and Cleanse Off Mitt, and bestselling author, Jennifer Rock, and registered GP, Dr Gemma Newman, who has a specialist interest in women’s health and nutrition, to create a four-week online course designed to help feed the skin from within, through a combination of a wholefood plant-based diet and expert skincare advice.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by The Skin Nerd® (@theskinnerd) on

The course includes a printable recipe booklet, containing over 50 delicious plant-based recipes, created by David and Stephen, tailored meal plans, shopping lists, and advice on plant-based eating, as well as expert skincare advice from Jennifer, covering all aspects of skin health, including how to identify your main skin concerns, establishing a skincare routine, skin throughout our lifetime, whole body skin health, SOS skin tips and more. Participants also have access to a private online community and weekly live Q&As with David, Stephen, Jennifer and Dr Newman.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by The Happy Pear (@thehappypear) on

This is the latest addition to The Happy Pear’s hugely successful online courses range, which includes The Happy Heart, The Happy Gut, and The Ultimate Vegan Cooking Course.

The Happy Heart course and The Happy Gut course have both been designed in collaboration with medical experts, including a consultant gastroenterologist and a registered dietician. 

Their courses have helped thousands of people in over 72 countries worldwide improve their wellbeing, with 57 percent of participants reporting an increase in energy levels, 54 percent reporting an improvement in their mood, and 38 percent experiencing weight-loss, as a result of taking part. 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by The Happy Pear (@thehappypear) on

David and Stephen said: “Eating more fruit and vegetables is one of the kindest things we can do for our planet and our bodies and skin. At The Happy Pear, we want to create a healthier and happier world and true health really starts from within and what we put into our bodies, that’s why we’re so happy to partner with Jennifer on The Happy Skin to empower people to make change through the food they eat.” said the brothers Stephen and David Flynn. 

Jennifer added: "Skin health requires an approach that addresses not only the outside of your skin but the inside, focusing on feeding it from the root, so to speak. I feel that the skincare you use on the outside should mirror what you get in through food for the best results.

"The Skin Nerd is about empowering people by arming them with the education they need to take care of their skin, which is something I’m lucky to have done for years in my career as a global skin tutor. I believe that feeling confident in your skin and having the right tools to get there is integral, so I am delighted to have joined forces with Dave and Stephen on The Happy Skin online course!”

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