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Living

A DAY IN THE LIFE OF...FIONNUALA MORAN

Every day we are reminded of the importance of sustainability but what does it mean to live a more sustainable lifestyle, and what exactly does it involve? We join sustainable activist, Fionnula Moran, for a day in the life of mindful living.

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FIRST THINGS FIRST

“To start my day, I genuflect in front of my David Attenborough portrait,” jokes Fionnuala. “I actually start with SPF to dodge the freckle moustache I get most summers and it’s out the door for a sprint or stroll with my gorgeous rescue Saluki, Farrah (after Fawcett because she’s our leggy supermodel!). By the time I get back, my coffee has cooled down (I don’t like drinking hot things) and over breakfast, I’ll watch creative people’s house and garden tours on YouTube. I adore those for inspiration as my partner and I bought a doer-upper not too long ago which we’re currently renovating. I’m also a huge fan of The Head Plan diary and fill mine out the night before, so I’ll sit down after breakfast and start working away on my list for the day.”

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The Head Plan X Roxie Nafousi

THE HEAD PLAN

€40.00

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NO DAY IS THE SAME

“I’m living my best footloose freelance lifestyle so every day can vary greatly. Last week I was filming campaigns, doing voiceovers and prepping some TV bits and this week I’m working with the 2FM Breakfast team in the mornings. I’m also wrapping up my master's degree in Climate Change with DCU so my thesis is percolating out of my brain until August too. Whatever’s going on workwise though, SPF, walking Farrah and coffee are my non-negotiables.”

THE POWER OF A GOOD SHOWER

“If I’m up predawn for an early show, I’ll have a shower the night before. I find a hot one is a great way to ease my body into a state of rest. However, if my morning starts at a more normal time, a shower with a blast of cold water at the end is a great way to get the body and mind buzzed for what’s ahead.”


SHOP FIONNUALA’S SHOWER ESSENTIALS:

DRY OFF

“Bigger is better when it comes to bath sheets for me and organic cotton is a must. ‘The True Cost’ documentary opened my eyes to the horrors of the pesticides used in cotton production and the toll they take on the farmers, soil and biodiversity unlucky enough to cross paths with them. I also think a darker colour towel is a wise and sustainable investment for fellow tan wearers as it won’t be as easily stained and so will look new for longer.”

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Organic Cotton Towel 

SHERIDAN

€3.00 - €15.00
€5.00 - €25.00

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SEAWEED SAVIOUR

“I’ve previously been plagued with psoriasis and found all things seaweed and oat help my skin immensely. Through lifestyle management, I’m lucky to now rarely be bothered by it but if a flare ever springs up, I’m straight back to the seaweed.”

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Handy To Have Hand Cream

VOYA

€20.00

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GET COSY

“Again I’ve opted for a dark colour to keep intact for longer and the organic cotton gives me peace of mind that this product didn’t cause human suffering to harvest. I find it luxurious to get cosy wrapped up in these dark colours. As we tend to buy them once and have them for life, bathrobes are one of the more sustainable bits of clothing we buy.”

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Hooded Bath Robe Ash Black

TEKLA

Now €47.70
Was €159.00

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POUR A CUP

“I love the ritual of making coffee in the morning. Whoever’s up first in our home delivers it to the later riser bed. I’m not limited to one a day, so if I have quite a solitary workday or need a break from my thesis, I’ll head to my local coffee shop with my KeepCup for an oat flat white. After an early shift in RTÉ, I swing into Cafe Diem in Donnybrook to visit the owner, Mo. He’s been a great pal for years and serves up a black coffee that’d wake the dead! When I’m not thesis-laden, I love a laptop-orientated workday on the move. A float from Dublin 8 towards Dublin 2 is dreamy for me and there’s a level of accountability I get from working in public that’s exceptionally productive.”

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Alder Brew Cork Keep Cup 6oz

KEEPCUP

€25.00

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TIME FOR LUNCH

“I’m forever freestyling with the contents of my fridge. It’s always a plant-based medley of what’s in season, where possible. This often ends up being a wrap loaded with grains, salad and maybe garlic mushrooms or tofu if I’m bothered using the hob. In the summer, the heavier grains make way for big salad bowls and mountains of couscous, sometimes with falafel, again, if I’m bothered using the hob. Luxury for me is taking salad leaves, fruit and veg from my own garden to add to each meal. We’re in a good place with food waste in our house and consider what we’ll want during the week when we’re doing the weekly shop to save us overbuying and wasting precious grub. When I’m on the go, I use lunchtime as an excuse to try the ever-growing offering of plant-based food in Ireland’s restaurants.”

TO THE KITCHEN

“I think the supermarket landscape will look totally different in a handful of years and this will improve the kitchen’s sustainability stakes. The shift towards the circular economy will steer us away from the largely unnecessary single-use plastic packaging that’s prevalent at the moment. It has such a short shelf life before landing in our recycling bins so I’m excited to see that replaced with reusable and refillable packaging. Reducing food waste, composting, growing our own salad leaves (and more fruit and veg if we have got the space), as well as switching to refillable cleaning products are great ways I’ve made my kitchen more sustainable.”


SHOP FIONNUALA’S KITCHEN ESSENTIALS:

A SIMPLE SWAP

“Single-use wrapping like tinfoil and clingfilm can be replaced with things like bee wraps to reduce waste in our kitchens.”

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Edding Bees Wrap LARGE WRAPS

EDDINGTON

€31.95

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GREEN CLEANING

“Due to my sensitive skin, I’ve always despised harsh chemicals in cleaning products but the more I learned about our water system, my hatred for them grew. So, this glam refillable cleaning range is right up my street.”

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Tub & Tile Cleaner Kit Cucumis

KINFILL

€25.00

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THE MUST-OWN

“Not the most glamorous but oh my, wow are they practical! Every weekend we like to head for the Wicklow Mountains and the Thermos full of coffee saves us buying single-use coffee cups for a post-hike brew.”

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Premier 34100 1.0L Flask Black

THERMOS

€21.00

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GO OUTSIDE

“Growing up I wanted to be a Celtic druid and gallop around Éire on a dapple grey horse but that wasn't a CAO option so I make do with normal, non-mystical exploring. Nature allows me to step into deep time. Whether I go into my garden without my phone and let the hours slide by tending to my plants, or take to the mountains, there’s no worry an awe-inspiring neon sunset can’t humble. All of it puts the human experience into perspective for me and makes me very grateful that I exist at all on such a beautiful and bountiful planet - having witnessed so much magic from flora and fauna I can't not feel strongly about protecting it.”

AND, RELAX

“To switch off in the evening, I take Farrah on her last walk of the day. Then, if the garden needs it, I’ll give the plants a drink of rainwater that our water butts collected. To start the bedtime winddown, I play with skincare products. I can’t call it a routine as there’s no rhyme or reason to what I pick each evening. The nights I’m not at a gig or doing my thesis, I’ll watch something with Rebel Phoenix. Usually, I’ll read but because I’m doing a lot for my masters at the moment, Pinteresting my vision boards or renovation plans for our home is a more relaxing change of lane for my brain. Nighttime brings a lot of my best ideas so I’ll note these down as they come to offload them and keep me on the road to Zs.”


SHOP FIONNUALA’S EVENING ESSENTIALS:

UNWIND WITH A BATH

“Seaweed is a super-food/beauty product/carbon sink, I’m baffled as to why it’s not more widely lauded. VOYA has been celebrating this stunning native product for some time and I feel a special connection to it as my mum’s side of the family hail from Sligo and survived the famine by bringing seaweed inland to farmers to use as fertiliser. No trip to Sligo is complete without a visit to VOYA’s seaweed baths so being able to recreate that relaxation and post-soak silky skin at home is dreamy. It’s Ireland’s only indigenous therapy and so leaning back into my aforementioned druid vibes, I’m all about it! I’ve found it to work wonders for psoriasis too.”

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Lazy Days Detoxifying Seaweed Bath

VOYA

€26.00

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DO SOME GARDENING

“Popping a bulb in these vases and watching it evolve showcases a microcosm of the broader growing cycles that sustain our life on Earth. Reconnecting with the magic of plants, fruits and vegetables growing in front of our eyes can spawn a revolution of garden growers who’ll have a greater appreciation for nature and the work that goes into making the food we enjoy.”

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Trio Glass Canopy Vase Set

LSA INTERNATIONAL

€50.00

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ENJOYING A DRINK WITH FRIENDS

“A bottle of wine might seem like an odd choice but for me so much of my sustainability journey has been about community and gravitating away from individualism and back to a collective mindset. Some people have this idea that sustainable living is all about deprivation and for me the opposite is true. The simplifying impact sustainability has had on my lifestyle has enriched my life hugely and given me back time, a truly precious resource. Enjoying a drink with friends and leaning into human connection, that’s one of the priceless ways we can celebrate life.”

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Jean Leon 3055 Organic Chardonnay

JEAN LEON

€20.00

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MORE TO READ

And what better way to end the day than by lighting a cosy scented candle? D8 Candles are handmade candles with a sustainable ethos. Find out more in The Irish-Made Candles You Need At Home.