Monday, 19 July 2010

The League Of Extraordinary Kinship.

Family: a person or people related to one and so to be treated
with a special loyalty or intimacy.



We have had a special week.
A week with a very definite theme that has the title 'Family'. The far-flung kind of family, the ones we never see enough of. And the closer ones we never see enough of either. There was a birthday party with a lot of reacquainting and catching up, with distant cousins and great-aunts, and people traveling from far and wide. And it was a heartening affair, and such a treat to have a party and a get-together that was not a wedding or a funeral!


We did manage one day at the beach with our French cousins, and the sun came out and we even had another gathering that evening as more cousins arrived from Galway and we sat late into the night chatting. And I don't think there is anything else I love more than the bustle of many people in the kitchen, preparing food, gathering around the table together and sharing. Teenagers, toddlers, parents, aunts and uncles and cousins.


And although the sun shone for the first few days it did become patchy and their holiday ended up (as was perfectly phrased on a postcard home) one third sunny, one third cloudy, and one third rainy. A perfect Irish summer.


So on the rainy days, which coincided with my car breaking down and being unavailable for almost three days, the children made gingerbread men, and played trains, and went swimming, and in between showers ran around the garden, and had quiet games in corners of the house. And overall, ten people in the house for a week was surprisingly easy and trouble free.

And on their last day we had another family gathering, this time in the new, almost finished house of my brother and his girlfriend. And oh what pleasure I took nosing around, loving the smell of new paint and wood and the atmosphere of new beginnings and the end of a long slog that is renovating a house.


There are the most beautiful and sweet details that beg to tell a story, if only we could hear. And I could spend forever peeking and poking and musing about long forgotten conversations and dreams and tears that must have passed under this roof in times gone by.


And what new dreams are being lived out here now? And what the future holds can only be wondered at, a new home the perfect place to begin a new chapter. And someday it too will be part of someone's story.


And as we gather, we chat and plan a plan that has been talked about for many a month, and which we will actually get to fulfill next weekend, all going to, well, plan! And I look forward to sharing it with you all in a few installments over the next week.


So, amidst all the visitors, the parties, the planning and assembling, we are thrilled have new neighbours in the nearest house to ours, and these new neighbours also happen to be some of our dearest friends, and...cousins!


And I won't begin to tell you the scheming and dreaming that is going on between these two little houses!

18 comments:

Mimi said...

Oh my goodness, Ciara, you've been busy but you have enjoyed it!
I absolutely LOVE that last photo of the two little ones heading off up the road! Adorable!

beck said...

How joyous and fun! I love to hear about families such as yours where the time together, whether it's often or hardly ever, is celebrated. I can think of nothing better for children and families than growing up together, sharing experiences & life xo

Dorn said...

The dark blue swell of the sky is gorgeous in the third picture. But the adventure they are surely off to in the last is my favorite. Again, thank you for sharing your world.

Dreamfarm Girl said...

All the photos are lovely, and the storytelling too....but I think my favorite photo is the window. Such a great curlicue handle, and the out-of-focus scenery outside is just gorgeous. You weave such a tale!

Bryan Boru said...

I do not comment enough, but I certainly stop by to peek into this life often. Your photography, though always evocative, is improving into an essential narrative to match your prose. Thanks

Martin H. said...

This is what it means to be a family. Ours has got smaller over the years but, oh, do we treasure what remains!

Looking forward to the instalments.

mise said...

You sound very happy, Ciara, and I love your new photo (pretty and jaunty). And the images here, especially the charming gingerbread men and the striking silhouette against the very blue sky.

A Daft Scots Lass said...

I love love LOVE your story told in beautiful, stunning photos.

jaboopee said...

sounds fierce exciting ...

i'm in the 2/3 depths of the midst of that long slog of renovation you speak of ...can't wait for the head above water feeling to emerge.....

( portraits may be a while longer ....)

and yes your new photo is much more like you ...

MissKris said...

As always, the quality of your photos takes my breath away. How fortunate your children will be someday to have their childhood so chronicled. You bring Ireland alive to us, too. Beautiful, Ciara.

Emma said...

Amazing post, Ciara. I love it all. The beach scene and the aquamarine sky with the silhouettes. The Vermeer-like interior with the gingerbread men. I like the plate :) The details in the beautiful old house. The little fella eating cake in the balloon secluded corner and running up the country lane with his new neighbour (and it's hard to run in wellies). What fun to have friends and cousins next door!

Ruby said...

Lovely post and I hope your new neighbours settle in nicely! I have a question that I hope you will take some time to answer -- Are your teenagers (Or maybe little ones) friends with any children that are homeschooled? I homeschool my twins, Noah and Rain, and there are worried that they won't have friends that go to normal school so I thought I'd ask some of my favourite Mama bloggers. Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoy the season!

Ruby said...

Lovely post and I hope your new neighbours settle in nicely! I have a question that I hope you will take some time to answer -- Are your teenagers (Or maybe little ones) friends with any children that are homeschooled? I homeschool my twins, Noah and Rain, and there are worried that they won't have friends that go to normal school so I thought I'd ask some of my favourite Mama bloggers. Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoy the season!

Erin said...

I am always amazed with your photos. Ireland must be beautiful!

HKatz said...

What wonderful photos - especially the one set against the backdrop of a rich dark blue sky.

jodi said...

this is my first visit here and I'm glad I came. Gorgeous!

Anna Emilia said...

It looks very pretty here, loving the camping pictures.

Happy summer night´s greetings from Finland.

Tracey said...

Pure joy. I love the way you share life in the most joyful bits.