Tuesday, 29 June 2010

Lovely stuff

Haven't had a chance to post about some happy things we've done lately. Here's Roo with a 'baby' ladybird on his collar. He was very excited to find him this evening, observant little guy that he is.

At the weekend, we went to the Donkey Sanctuary in Liscarroll on a mission. Roo had been bitten by a mean stallion the week before and I was worried he'd be put off them for life. He loves animals and is confident around them. Even around horses, where I would be naturally very reticent, he shows no fear, so I thought it would be terrible if he lost that self-assurance.
Well, I'm glad to say it seems to have been a success. He was very happy to pat them and decided donkeys were cool and that the one we met last week was a bit of an oddity in the donkey world. This one in the picture seems to be having an '80's legwarmer moment, don't you agree? Very cute. I think he was Dessie, or maybe Lorcan. Donkey bottoms... Was this Shakespeare's inspiration for the character in A Midsummer Night's Dream? Hee hee...
Here's a picture from our week-off. The Cheese Experience in Stoneyford, Co Kilkenny! They were very welcoming and served a lovely cheese plate, free-range sausie roll, local apple juice and i-meam (known to most people as ice cream). Afterwards, the nice lady allowed us to have a stroll around their farm and cheese 'factory'. They have a little farm in the middle of this village, which just strikes me as the perfect mix.
This is a picture of the bridge over the River Barrow in Graiguenamanagh, also in Kilkenny, which Lee and I have to admit (a little grudgingly) is a lovely county in parts. We had a stroll around Thomastown too and would have done more than drive round Inistioge if we'd had the time. But then, now that the Wowee house deal has fallen through, we probably will have a fair bit of time to explore it properly, as it is less than an hour from there.

Monday, 28 June 2010


Sad and disturbing news...
but it reminded me how important this prayer is.... and helped me find it after it had fallen down from the fridge.


Jesus, Mary and Joseph, I come to pray for every mother who is

today considering the termination of the life of her unborn child.

Grant her the courage and grace to persevere,

so that the child already living,

will be born safely.

I pray also that those who support, encourage,

promote or perform abortions

may be granted a conversion of mind and heart.

Finally, I pray for all those who have been

hurt by the tragedy of abortion.

Eternal Father, I offer you the most precious Body and Blood,

Soul and Divinity of your dearly beloved son, our Lord Jesus Christ,

in union with the masses celebrated throughout the world today, in

atonement for our sins, and for all the sins of abortion in the

world. For the sake of His sorrowful Passion have mercy on us

and on the whole world. AMEN

Pray one Our Father....One Hail Mary....One Glory be.

Thursday, 24 June 2010

let's hope you never need it...

Poonch managed to out-do himself today in his constant striving towards what Lee calls 'reckless endangerment'. I even had to dial 999 today as he seemed to be choking on some cucumber. We both got an awful fright.
In a strange coincidence I then heard about 'Citizen CPR' on the radio and followed some links to this video. Thanks to Louis and Zelie, Poonch is ok again now.

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

honeysuckle stroll

Roo woke up feeling 'crook' this morning. He missed his school tour yesterday and had to come home early from school on Tuesday on account of a mysterious tummy bug. Today he was supposed to be taking part in sports day, but he was sick at breakfast, so we had to stay at home again. It's such a pity because he loves 'school' and all the fun and company, and the year is nearly over, so he'll be stuck with boring Mum and annoying little brother for two months until he can see people his own age again.
The weather continues warm and pleasant, thank God. I went for a walk down the lane with the lads in the buggy. The place seemed alive with bees: Roo spotted one in the 'white elephant pen' that the landlord made outside and we saw and heard many more along the way. At least three different species of bumblebees and some honeybees, the sacs on their back legs bulging with yellow pollen. They were busy touring the many wild flowers that have appeared since we last walked there. Pretty wild roses and heavenly honeysuckle, as you can see in the pictures. So, lovely sounds, sights and smells, including a warm earthy smell that reminded me of being a little girl (maybe from one of the long Surrey walks Dad used to drag us along on). A lovely stroll, we all benefited from being out in the fresh air: Roo chattered most of the way (even when he's not well he can't stop talking).

I gave the lads a little sprig of honeysuckle to smell and Poonch got upset when it fell out of the buggy as I folded it up. Sometimes the lads really surprise me with little sensitive things like that.

Saturday, 19 June 2010

more lovely stuff

I thought of some more things that happened in the last week that I wanted to share.
Roo talking about his guardian angel Tony
picking out wool for my baby's blanket, receiving it in the post and casting on!
bike rides across silage-cut fields with pint-sized pillion passenger
Tah-tee and sossie from Poonch

Friday, 18 June 2010

Back to the Wowee house

Well, our holiday at home continues and this evening we find ourselves at the Wowee house. It is completely our house again because I'm afraid the sale fell through. The people who had agreed to buy it have bought another house in the estate instead because the builder dropped the price lower than ours when he found out we'd had an offer.
So we will have to keep up the prayers to St Joseph and Louis and Zelie Martin.
Here's a picture of the pretty rosebush outside the front door which is covered in fragrant little flowers at the moment. Very enticing, no?

Thursday, 17 June 2010

Our Tour of the Burren

The Burren Perfumery was one of our stops today. We wandered in their lovely gardens, sniffed their roses and various creams and scents, ate some cakes, spent rather a lot of money and basked in the sunshine in the lovely courtyard (above).
This butterfly and lots of little moths were very attracted to this plant.

Earlier on in Lisdoonvarna, we left the inviting Wild Honey Inn where we spent the night and visited the Burren Smokehouse where we bought some tasty goodies. Poonch likes their Smoked salmon which is less salty than others he's tried. 'He must be a bit of a gourmand,' said Birgitta, the friendly Swedish lady who runs it with her husband. She met her hubbie, a local man, in Lisdoonvarna, as did the Texan lady behind the till. Maybe Uncle B should visit...

Fionn MacCumhaill....

and the Salmon of Knowledge

Some of the lovely flowers that grow in the Burren.

The iconic Poulnabrone dolmen

Limestone pavement in the Burren

The garden at the Wild Honey Inn (best hotel ever, according to Roo, which taught him an early lesson that flattery will get you lollies and crisps). The breakfast room overlooks the garden.

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

Wag-wag, Tuk-tuk and Dig-dig

Can you see it yet? Here it comes! It's getting closer....

It's a zoo-zoo train! Roo's favourite thing about Fota Wildlife Park. Lee and I spent the day trying to get him to look at 'the monkeys swinging!', 'the baby giraffe!', ''the pelicans' huge beaks!', while he picked daisies with a little girl, slid down slides, chased crows and maras (think Argentinian hare), crossed bridges and played at being a fireman all the while listening out for the little train that runs from one side of the park to the other.
He did notice some animals though, as he agreed that the penpens (penguins) were his favourite animal there. Poonch got a kick out of being close to the little Eastern Grey kangaroos and watching the gibbons' acrobatics.
But probably the best thing about today was that it was Roo's first time on a train, a real train! There is a station right next to the wildlife park, so it was a great idea of Lee's to choose the journey between it and our local train station as the lads' inaugural rail trip. Observant little Roo didn't miss a thing all day and kept going until he finally succumbed to a 'nooze 20 minutes before we arrived back in Charleville, crumby and sticky and very tired.
Just before he fell asleep, we discussed what the new baby might be called. That's where the title of this post came from. They're pretty original names, aren't they? He's certainly his own little man.
'This is the best holiday ever,' he declared to Lee on the way home.

Monday, 14 June 2010

Wouldn't it be great if it was like this all the time?

Lee is off this week! Apart from the obvious loveliness of having him around all day, it is great to have an extra pair of hands and eyes to help me in my big-tummied state!
Here is a polar bear that I tried unsuccessfully to remove tomato sauce from. Washing up liquid didn't work and nor did baking soda, but it did make him feel at home for a while, peeping out from a snow-like dusting of white powder.

Sunday, 13 June 2010

Pictures from the Garden Fete

Today we went to the Fete in aid of our local church. The lads had great craic in the special big-boy-free toddlers' bouncy castle while I raided the book stand for children's stuff. The weather wasn't quite as bad as it was forecast and we got away with just a couple of blustery half-hearted showers.
Here are some of the animals from the 'Zoo' at €1 a peep all for charidee. Overall, not as good as last year's fete, quite a lot of tat on offer, I'm afraid, but a nice way to spend an afternoon.

Saturday, 5 June 2010

Bloom 2010

We met this amazing eagle just as we were leaving. I didn't think he was real at first.

Gold medal winner

Our kind of garden

Bee garden

Busy bee


Amazonia garden

For May...

Thursday, 3 June 2010

Just came across this on the SPUC website. You know how easy it is to make a preggie lady (like me) cry....

Tuesday, 1 June 2010

Janet's Last Book

Here are some pictures from a touching book about my favourite illustrator, Janet Ahlberg, written as a tribute by her husband, Allan. She died far too young, in 1994, from cancer. Among the books they created together are The Jolly Postman, Peepo!, Each Peach Pear Plum, The Baby's Catalogue. Her work is so charming, with beautifully observed details. She would have been one of the main reasons I thought of becoming an illustrator, before I decided there would be more job security in the path I chose. Silly logic...
Roo likes this picture because it reminds him of the 'show' he was in at Christmas.