A blog by an Irishwoman, written in both English and Swedish, depending on what humour is on me....
En blogg av en irländska, skriven på svenska och engelska.
Just scroll down to find the English bits among the Swedish, or vice versa.

Ta Gaeilge agam freisin, más é an rud é go bhfuil éinne eile le Gaeilge ag léamh mo bhlagsa.

Ich verstehe auch ein bisschen Deutsch, je parle un petit peu francais och klarar av lite norska med.

Wondering about the background of the blog? They're the Cliffs of Moher, in the neighbouring county, County Clare, 8km long, 700m high, and magnificent. Well worth a visit if anyone is around the West of Ireland

Monday, November 17, 2014

Sunday evening awe

Wonder and awe and beauty:
standing yesterday in the early evening quiet, outside the car-park of a GAA pitch in North Co.Meath, before me to the east, the rise and fall of the drumlins of this county, the tinge of dusk off to the east, pink and purple shades to the sky,
above me, powder blue sky, and to the west, the few clouds had taken on hues of peach and cream, touched by the rays of the setting sun.
I am standing beside a bus, from the hall in front of me comes the sounds of people laughing, singing, dancing;
These are  the sounds of joy from the supporters of our Ladies Football team; our lovely young women, our daughters and grand-daughters played a most wonderful game of Gaelic football and conceded not a single point to win by 1-13 to no score.
So I breathe in the damp cool air, rejoice quietly in the beauty around me, the November countryside, the fog beginning to lift from the wet fields, the last few crows flying home, the stillness of the Irish countryside and I give thanks for it all, the fire and fitness of the girls, the commitment and the determination, the managers who give of their time voluntarily, the supporters who travelled for 4 hours to watch a match, the generosity of the people in the North Meath club who fed us and were so dignified towards us, even though their own daughters must have been so disappointed to lose.
I give thanks  and I am struck by how absolutely beautiful it is to be in Ireland in that spot at that moment and to be witness to all these wonderful things. And in I go to rejoin the celebrations in the hall.

Friday, September 26, 2014

going to handMaid craft day tomo, maybe Bunratty on Sunday!

I'm off to Dublin, the Big Smoke,  to handmAid craft day tomorrow, in aid of Laura Lynn Hospice, can't wait, very excited.
Just about to pack the bag now, taking some knitting and crochet and spinning stuff with me, as I will be at the venue all day, taking two classes and inbetween classes hoping to mingle, and craft together with other knitters/spinners/crochet-ers.
Have a look here: http://handmaidcraftday.com/news/

Then, a little secret, I may even get to Bunratty Castle outside Limerick on Sunday for some demo spinning, gulp, I just rang up earlier this afternoon and asked if I could!
check out Bunratty Harvest Day here: http://www.shannonheritage.com/Events/AnnualEvents/TraditionalHarvestDay/
The only thing that remains is to get 'permission' from the family to go Missing and Crafting two days in a row!
been a very bad blogger, I know, so very sorry, life catches up on me!

Sunday, June 8, 2014

wouldn't I love to have time to write in this blog

Indeed, wouldn't I love to have time to write in this blog....
Instead of which I have to spend my time writing up the End of Year reports for the pupils in my class, all 30 of them...
I have a basic outline done for each report, but I need to go back and reread and correct them now, today.
I am also tempted to spend some time spinning on any of of my 4 spinning wheels, but no, that particular joy is denied to me while these reports remain unfinished.
Wouldn't I also love to have time to take photos and  upload them in here in this blog, photos of plants and wool, and wheels and weather in Ireland.
But no, I am quite tired now from staring at this computer for last 4 hours, so I'm off for a little siesta, a nap to restore the batteries and then later I will get up and deal with these reports again.
And all the time I am thinking, wouldn't I love to have the time to write in this blog.....

Monday, May 5, 2014

my first 10km Great Limerick Run

I did my first 10km run (run/walk/jog, to be honest) yesterday, Sunday May 4th 2014,  as part of the Great Limerick Run. My chip time was 01:25:15, ie 1 hour and 25 minutes. I am delighted with myself, even if I am a little stiff today.
My 3 daughters (ages 18, 17, 13) also did the same course, they ran it all and finished in 52mins/53 mins and 54 mins respectively. Well done, my lovelies!
And my brother ran too, he topped us all, finishing in 44 mins, well done, young fella!

Extra day off today Monday, a public holiday instead of on 1st May as in most European countries. Well deserved day off, to potter around and enjoy the peace and quiet, and rest a bit after the exertions of yesterday.
Just a month of secondary school left for my 3 daughters, and the eldest has that very important final state exam, the Leaving Certificate exam at the beginning of June. The other two can take it easy, although luckily the 17 yr old has a part-time job in a local shop which will keep her happy and busy.
My husband is now enjoying his first days of unemployment after taking a redundancy deal with his former employer. Dinners will be made, and house will be kept tidy, I am looking forward to it!
I've two months left at school, a very busy time,  lots to do and finish up with before the final bell rings on Thursday 26th June.
Spring has come, Summer has officially started, but there's no Summer weather yet, rainy and cool at present. Not to worry, it's easier to teach, and study, if weather isn't too hot and fine!

Monday, March 31, 2014

last day of March 2014

Brief Update:
1. The van passed the NCT, by the skin of its teeth, but hey, a pass is a pass, yes? Hooray! It will once again do the job of driving the 6 of us plus luggage  from Limerick  to Dublin Airport in the summer, on our now yearly trip to Sweden!
2. One daughter turned 17 last week, where are the years going to?
3. Dear son turns 8 next week!
4. The clocks went forward, so it is officially Summertime (in one way of looking at it) now in Ireland. It was great to have the extra hour of light this evening, I even went for a walk/run with younger daughter. (Although in my case it's more like an accelerated shuffle, than a run, but hey, I kept doing it, so it counts as a run!)
5. New Year resolutions I am trying to stick to include: Walk more frequently, Run a bit, Watch what I eat and Lose weight. I am slowly but surely losing weight and getting a bit fitter slowly also.
6. Part of the New Me, is getting to bed at a reasonable time each night, so that's it from me folks!
Good night, Take care!

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Saint Patrick's Weekend

It is a month since I wrote in here. Apologies to all who like to follow blogs with daily updates, you will find that I am not a daily blog writer.....
The storm of 12th February will not be forgotten for a long time in Ireland, especially here in Munster. The South West of Ireland really took the brunt of it. We were without power for 3 days, some of my friends were without power for 6 days. Isn't that incredible?
Imagine trying to get children to school and yourself to work, on cold wet days, when the house is dark and cold every morning, I don't know how people coped.
We got power back during the weekend, so we were spared the worst of it. We had a single gas burner, so there was a lot of porridge cooked, followed by either boiled or scrambled eggs and copious amounts of tea. Luckily, my mother who lives nearby, is on a different line and got her power back after 24 hours,so we spent a certain amount of time in her house, in front of her stove, warming up, with kids watching TV and rest of us just glad for brightness, and warmth.

The flu or a heavy head-cold made itself known to us after the storm. Coughing and wheezing became everyday difficulties for at least 3 of us in my house:, Darling Husband(DH), Darling Son(DS) and me. All 3 of us went to the doctor with it, and got sick certs and medicine. We are almost back to normal now. All I can say is,  "Modern medicine is great stuff!"

Spring is here, certainly in the last week, one can feel the difference. It has become a bit milder, and there is a huge stretch in the evenings, and the mornings are bright again at last. The snowdrops have bloomed and are now fading, the daffodils are in full bloom and there are some tiny wild pink cyclamens under the trees in a place where I sometimes walk. The wild primroses are flowering on a ditch, about half km away. There are buds and catkins on the bushes and trees around my house.
I love Spring, the hope and the promise it brings.

Sadly, we have had 3 very sad and tragic deaths in the parish and neighbouring parish. I have taken my two daughters, 18 and 16 , to wakes for 3 people they know in the last 3 weeks. It is heart-breaking to think of the pain and grief of the families bereaved by tragic circumstances beyond their control, 3 different situations, unrelated events, but huge sadness and pain for the people who have to somehow struggle on without their loved ones. My prayers go out to them.

Today was St Patrick's Day. My DH took DS to a parade in a small country town not too far from here. I was at a funeral and couldn't go, but I would not really have gone anyway, as I have been many times before. There were parades in the city too, but I am not a fan of crowds so I avoid the bigger parades.

Tomorrow it's back to work and school  for all. My van is going for the NCT (National Car Test) tomorrow after work. It failed the test about 2 weeks ago, on basis of failing handbrake cables, so I have had those replaced, along with some bushings and bearings,  and now I have my fingers and toes crossed, that it will pass tomorrow.

So, time to hit the sack, and dream of the one thing I didn't get to do this weekend: spin, on one of the 4 spinning wheels, yes, I recently acquired 2 more wheels, both second-hand,  both Ashford , both beautiful and addictive.....
I love my spinning wheels.

Take care all!

Thursday, February 13, 2014

177 kph, the 8th storm, Storm Darwin

Storm Darwin hit South west Ireland yesterday, 12th February 2014, with Violent Storm Force Gale 11, gusts of up to 177 kilometres per hour! For 2 hours from about 1pm to 3pm, the wind hammered us.
The roof was blown off the Boat Club in Limerick city.
Windows were blown in on the 4th and 5th floor of the Tax Office in central Limerick.
Trees were blown down all over the county.
250.000 households were without power, a record number, mostly across the southern part of the country.
Roads were blocked. It took people an hour to drive detours, instead of the usual 7km 10 min trip home. Some people had 4hr journeys/waits/detours.
Nobody was killed, thankfully.

When I drove home, it was like mini-Armageddon.
When I got home, I found the garden shed we call the playhouse in a pile on the grass, 6 metres from its base. The trampoline had blown over 2 hedges and was in next door neighbours back garden.
The old dog house was blown to bits. A weeping willow tree was blown over. The fence at the gate was blown over. Flashings from the edge of the roof were pulled off and lay in our lawn and next door.
We had no power and spent last night in darkness, with just the single gas burner to boil water, pasta, etc.
Today, still no power.
Watery sunshine thankfully.
We now have a Boil Water Notice for our area.
I have an upper chest infection, and am wheezing and have laryngitis.
I am at the public library writing this on my way home from the doctor.

Storm nr 9 coming tomoro

Sunday, February 9, 2014

7 storms in 7 weeks

The weather forecaster tonight said we have had 50% more rain than average since mid December, and that we have had 7 storm systems passing over Ireland in that period also.
Luckily, where we live, we have not been affected by flooding, but there have been many people affected by floods in Lmerick City, 20km away, and more people affected in Cork city, in County Clare, in Galway, and in seaside areas, as well as in many towns with rivers flowing through them... It must be horrendous to have your house or business flooded and to have to clean it all up and try and live in the house again.

Me, I am not a fan of storm force gales, and I sincerely hope we have seen the last of the storms for a while now.

Today I went for a walk, and spotted daffodil shoots coming up, and when I drive past my gran-aunts house I see the snowdrops in full bloom under the hedge.
There are already 3 daffodils in bloom outside a house I pass on my way to school.

I braved the elements last Friday to drive to the other side of Limerick to look at a spinning wheel, and yes, I bought it! 3rd wheel, and the reason I bought is was because it is an Ashford traditional, from circa 1985, and it was in great condition. I was told by an experienced spinner: You can always get an Ashford Traddy to work! It's true, in this case anyway. I had to improvise a drive band with kitchen cotton twine,  from tesco, and the wheel needed oiling, but then, she spun just fine for me.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

internet connection not good these days

Living in a house on a small country  road in rural Ireland has its charms. Strong internet connections, however, are not one of those charms...
There is gnashing of teeth and tearing of hair here regularly, as the modem stops working and the  websites we would like to view, open very slowly, if at all.
We do not have good enough internet access on the telephone lines yet, so we have a plug in modem, which gives us wifi, if you are sitting in the right place and if the Gods of the Web are smiling on you at that moment. Often it would appear that those Gods are carousing elsewhere and we resort to disconnecting and re-connecting, using the trouble-shooting options, resetting network adapters on laptops and unplugging and replugging in the modem over and over again. Suffice to say that it is unsatisfactory in  the extreme.

On the other hand, if we had perfect wifi all the time, nobody would do anything, or talk to anybody else!

I am sitting here with a head-cold, which will get worse before it gets better, if my husband's cold is anything to go by. I do not need this cold this week, I have to meet parents for parent-teacher meetings on 2 evenings this week, and on a third evening I have to go the Parent-teacher meeting for my second daughter. This week I need to be on top form, but it's not looking too good right now.
Has anyone else had a problem with the cursor suddenly hopping to a totally different part of the page as one types a message online and continue typing in that spot? and even highlighting and deleting words. phrases, whole sentences ? I have to watch this cursor  like a hawk, it jumps all over the place. rather  annoying.
Heading to bed now, plenty to do tomorrow, so I need my sleep now.
Good night to all, stay warm, stay well!

Sunday, January 12, 2014

back to basics after the holidays and storms

So, the Christmas came and went, and the New Year, and both brought storms, with very high winds and high seas. Luckily we do not live near the sea, or a river, as there was a lot of flooding with the storms. We did have some trees down along the little road we live on, and at one point, (8.50am on Friday morning, 27th December, if I remember correctly), I had to clamber through the branches of a fallen tree, along with Dear daughter, in order to get her to work that morning. My mother was able to drive us from the far side of the tree to the shop where DD works, otherwise, well, no work for DD that day.
Our trampoline (studsmatta) was blown across the garden and over the hedge into the next field. We manhandled it back into our lawn after a day or two, it seems to have survived, but we will have to buy a new safety net and net-poles for it.
The storms caused major damage all along the west coast, there are some amazing and downright scary photos on youtube of the waves as tall as 2 -storey houses crashing over Lahinch sea-front.
People in the West had a few sleepless nights in a row, worrying about floods, tides, and wind damage. Roads were washed away, or totally submerged. Tractors had to take people in and out of areas cut off by the floods. Luckily, we escaped all this, bar for one sleepless night, listening to the wind howling like a banshee around the house.
 We're all back at work and school now, it's not easy to get to bed early each night, but I know the price I pay if I don't get my sleep, so I will toddle along to bed soon.
I did lots of spinning over the holidays, yes, I will post pics.
I want to do lots more, but time is hard to find.
Ireland as usual is beginining to show little signs of early spring already and I love it!
Tiny spears of snowdrop and daffodil leaves beginning to peep above ground. Wonderful.
Bright skies. Cold but fresh. No snow, bit of frost and ice maybe, but mostly just more wind and rain, but that's ok with me. I was born under a cloud (mid November baby, that's me,) and this time of year has its charms I believe!
Take care all!