Sunday, 31 May 2009

A Week Of Pictures.

This week has been, with one exception, a week of sunshine and days of summer,
and the house hums with the afterglow long into the evening.

The midsummer Solstice is approaching, and in the marsh behind our house the birds sing all through the night.
As I sit here the sun has finally dipped behind the Sugarloaf, and the moths begin to make their slow bumping way in through the open window,

And there! A peacock calls across the fields. Echoing like a forgotten dream of India.

Little feet amongst the daisies.

Sunset over the Sugarloaf.

Moshing the Mama's!

When we live too near the sea...

Lions in the grass.

The sun followed me.

Saturday, Killiney Hill.

The darling of my heart.

On my doorstep.

Normal blogging returns from now!

I hope you all had a beautiful weekend!

Wednesday, 27 May 2009

An Unintentional Hiatus.

Gosh. It's almost a week since I posted here.

No major reason other than life-with-four-kids-getting-the-better-of-me! We've had coughs and colds, sun and rain, too many late nights, and basically I think I've just been trying to squeeze in too much into my week. 

This evening, exhausted from a marathon clear-out of the two older boys bedroom that took two days, I was finally finished, and as Jay was cooking tonight I snatched a few minutes to lay on my bed in the evening sun.

For all of ten minutes.

 And then they came looking for me. 

But sometimes ten minutes is all you need. 

Thursday, 21 May 2009

Something Lovely.

We have spent the last few nights going through a big old suitcase of photographs. 
A whole chunk of our life just sitting there waiting to be rediscovered. 
It's amazing. 
The things you forget. The names and faces that are familiar yet unremembered.

 And the names and faces that are still part of your life yet somehow changed.

There are whole swathes of our memories, seasons of our years, that are carefully held in these images.
And I find myself again and again, marveling at how timeless they are. 
All the forgotten photographs that include my children, are somehow my own memories,
my own childhood.

I see myself, my brothers, my sister. 
My parents.
I see us all on this wonderful wheel of life.
There seems no dividing line at times.

We are one.
And the summer grass is mine,
crisp and dry and bristly underfoot.

And the sky forever wheels overhead,
like a friendly hand anointing our blessed heads.

We are running barefoot and innocent once again.

And I am reminded so clearly of all the things I loved. The things that do not change. 
And though my life is changed,
is changed beyond belief,

And I have changed,

Though this is true, one thing remains the same:

We who are born and raised together,
time and distance may capture,

but the bond we cannot break.

Wednesday, 20 May 2009

The Story Of We.

Before I begin, I want to say Happy Birthday to my man Jay! Thank you for being so amazing.

I thought I'd respond today to some of the sweet comments on yesterdays post. 

Yes. I did forget to mention we got married on the same date! Twice. Honestly, how did I not remember to mention that?

The 18th day of May was such an important date that there was never any question we'd have our wedding on any other day. So, five years later to the day, we got married. 

We knew we didn't want a church wedding, but this was Ireland in the mid nineties. Really, what was the alternative? Well, other than going to the registry office? Nothing. 
So that's what we did. And we managed to have three days of celebrations between our family and friends. It was wonderful.

But five years and two children later the internet had arrived and suddenly there were other possibilities. I found a Swiss witch called Silja living in Dublin who agreed to officiate at our celtic handfasting. We wrote our vows and had the ceremony in our garden surrounded by family and friends. And with a few little adjustments I even managed to squeeze into my original Mucha inspired dress that my Mum had made!

So there you are. Of course next year is another significant year. I wonder should we do something to mark it?

Now there's an idea!


Edit: Thanks for all your sweet comments, and for those of you interested you can see more of my dress over here on Carnival!


Monday, 18 May 2009

Where We Began.

The 18th day of May.

We are nineteen years together.

This house is where we began. 
A college party. 
The 11th hour. He walked away for the last time....

And then,
he came back. And we walked, at dawn, to Sandycove, shy and unbelieving. 

At last.
And now,

I have been with him for as many years as I was not.

I am blessed.

Sunday, 17 May 2009

A Week Of Pictures.

A week of sunshine and rain. 
Some days like summer was here. 
Some days the clouds closed in and shushed us with rain.

The view from Eily's garden.

Brave souls!

My Only Girl's sewing box.

The rain blew in...

Ice cream with Mamo and Grandad.

What do they talk about?

Sunlight in Sabine's garden.

Before school, quite early.

What little boys do.


What I should be doing...

A different view of Greystones. In the rain...

What we do on Friday's.

 Dancing Show!

Saturday, 16 May 2009

Something Lovely For The Weekend.

Well, Jay is home and life is falling back into place, but I thought I'd share this sweet lovesick song with you. It's by one of my current favourite bands Taken By Trees.

I hope you like it!

If you like this you can hear some more of their music here.

Happiest weekend wishes to you all. I hope the sun shines wherever you are. And if it does please send some our way!

Thursday, 14 May 2009

Something Lovely.

So, getting on with the theme of decorating and houses etc, I want to share these gorgeous photos with you. The lovely Sharon from Friendly Cottage took them in Avoca and Cath Kidson and she has a wonderful post on painted wood on her blog. In it she waxes lyrical about how much she loves painted wood and I have to say I'm in total agreement with her. 

I just adore this green dresser! We have a similar one that is painted white and green (see below) but I am totally enamored with this one. (Jay doesn't agree but he might just come around!)

My Dresser.

And my recently acquired oak table that my Dad spotted in Dunnes Home sale for €50, (thanks Dad!) is lined up for a similar brightening up as this divine lovely, though I think I'll staple on my oilcloth a la The Yvestown Blog.

We also even have this very chair which is at the moment painted white. I went through a paint-everything-white-for-now phase which the older two children complained loudly about and I now feel ready for some colour. 

The colour scheme in the kitchen at the moment is pale pink with accents of red and orange. It works and it's fairly subtle but I'm ready for a change. 

I'm starting to get excited about planning for this remodeling now and I'll be sure to post some before and after pictures as we go. 

There really is so much inspiration to be had out there. I feel a few more posts on the subject coming on!

Monday, 11 May 2009

First Day At The Beach.

This morning as we made our way to the car,
stepped into the sunny garden,
the sound of the sea rushing and booming on the beach,
the smell of salt and negative ions swirling around us,
assaulting us, tempting us.

And as I drove out I had such an urge to turn left instead of right,
to head for the beach,
ignore the classroom.

So after school we did just that.

Our first day 'at the beach' this year. 
And though there was a brisk and biting wind,
and no one got in to swim,
We had a picnic and friends and sun. 

Summer has begun.

Sunday, 10 May 2009

Treading Water.

I know it's been a bit quiet around here.

Once again Jay's away, this time in Washington D.C. 

After five days life just becomes a bit hectic and I have to simplify things! And we still have a few to go. 

So as I sat on my couch with my laptop on my knee, chatting to Jay as he sat in Starbucks somewhere, I marveled at how brilliant technology is, that we can do this so easily! 

Apparently Lisa Hannigan is all over the radio there, so I thought I'd post another of her videos for you to start your week. And if you like what you hear then do check out her album, the cover of which by the way was photographed by our very own sweetie Cliona.

I hope you enjoy!

Friday, 8 May 2009

What The Postman Brought.

We don't have a proper post box. We have a painted, peeling old box that sits on our doorstep and the postman has to walk all the way round to the back of our house to put our post in it. Every so often I think we really should get a new one. It's on our list. Just not very high up. He has never complained, although maybe he's just too polite. 
It's always a thrill to pull it back and peep in to see a big envelope or package sitting patiently waiting for us. 

So, today there was something waiting for me. All parceled up beautifully with a lot of care and attention. 

This is what I won on a generous give-away over at Mimi Charmante a couple of weeks back. I got to choose a print of one of her delightful prints from her Etsy Shop. Do take a peek there. As well as prints of her photos, she also has sweet bags for sale there.

I just love this lonesome, slightly melancholy image of train tracks disappearing off into the distance. (Though just let me say all the other prints at Little Bluebird Studio are not melancholy by any means!) It must be our proximity to the railway line here in 'Lis na Mara' that makes it appealing to me. That and my underlying penchant for melancholy.

So thank you dear friend for a very lovely print, which will be straight up onto my wall when all this remodeling is done.  

Wednesday, 6 May 2009

Something Lovely.

I'm thrilled to share with you a gorgeous collaboration between two of my favourite designer-bloggers. Studio Violet is Camilla Engman and Elisabeth Dunker.

Check out their porcelain gallery here.

I just adore this circus themed re-used porcelain.

They also have these sweet posters.

As well as stamps and wall stickers, among other products.

And check out their blog here.

And of course, their SHOP!

I hope you like!

Monday, 4 May 2009

Milk and Kisses.

I find myself in a new place.

The Eldest turning thirteen is significant in itself and I find my head is full of new wonderings and imaginings. The wheel turns and my babies grow. I am excited about the future and what lies ahead for all of us.

And not only do we now have a teenager in the house, but we no longer have a baby in the house. Of course they will always be my babies, but in the truest sense those days are gone.

This littlest scallywag of them all is now weaned, 100%. Over a week now, and we have established our new little bedtime routine. In some ways it kind of breaks my heart. And in so many ways I am so ready for my next chapter. 

Nappies (diapers) are also on the way out, slowly but surely. And that is one washing load less that I will not miss! 
In small ways the babe that was is quietly being replaced by a fiercely independent little boy who knows his own mind and how things should be done.

Do mothers ever really get over the loss of their baby babies? I am reminded of a line in the song 'In Metal' by Low: 'Partly hate to see you grow, And just like your baby shoes, Wish I could keep your little body, (In metal).' 

I know I have written about this many times. It seems to be a theme here! I have this epic internal battle going in my heart, tugging me this way and then that way, and all the time plucking painfully at my heart-strings and making me wonder does it ever actually get easier? 
I vacillate between joy and excitement at every new phase, and then the crushing despair when I realise something is gone for good.

Below is a letter I wrote to a friend a few years ago when I recieved a cd in the post from him unexpectedly.

Dearest Fergus,

Thank you! Thank you SO much.
I've just listened to the recordings of (the two oldest) and it made me
laugh, and it made me cry! It was like putting my ear to a tiny hole
in my past and hearing these little voices that I will never hear
again. Those babies don't exist any more! Oh how that made me cry!
It's different to looking at photo's. I felt like they were on the
other side of the wall in a room that has no door. It's the strangest
feeling. And nothing has ever made me truly realise how grown up they
are now. I wish you had seen them when you were here, as I think you
would appreciate just how amazing it was for me to hear that.
And how perfect was your choice of music at the end. All in all it
just killed me! I don't think I've ever recieved a present like it.
And all the more because it came out of the blue. I will treasure it.

Thank you.

Love from Ciara x

But the joy almost always wins out. The desperate grasping moments of loss are fleeting. 

But they have a sting to their tail!