Showing posts from December, 2009

Christmas Cribs in Cork

I have not blogged for a few days not because I was busy gardening, quite the opposite in fact!We have had frozen roads, frost and ice and some areas have had quite heavy snowfalls.Getting out after dark is a bit of a problem,it may be OK going out but by the time you are coming home the temperatures have dropped to freezing and the roads are skating rinks.When my older children were very young (about 35-40 years ago)a tradition on St Stephen's Day (Boxing Day in England) was to visit the churches in the city and have a look at the different cribs.That of course was in the days when shops opening on that day was unheard of.Shops closed from Christmas Eve often for 3 to 4 days.Garages also closed so one of the tasks on Christmas Eve was to fill the car up with petrol.We managed fine and Christmas was a family holiday not just one day of eating and drinking and out to the sales the next day.So I will take you on a short tour of some of our cribs in Cork
The above nativity (crib) is …

Merry Christmas to All!

May I wish all of my regular readers a very Happy and Peacefull Christmas, thank you for sharing your lives and hobbies with us over the past year as we have gotten to know one another in different parts of the world.To anyone passing through I hope you are enjoying the Christmas season with family and friends.
Christmas time always takes us back to previous times and we think of those who are no longer with us,my late father Billy celebrated his birthday on Christmas Eve. Every Christmas morning my children visit with their children ,over the years it has become a tradition that I cook breakfast (the full Irish).When everyone has left I then visit the graveyard where my parents are buried and share a few minutes with them. This year I may not be able to do that as we have had sub zero temperatures for the last few days and lots of roads are impassible with ice, the road to the cemetery is not a major road so has not been treated with salt.
Top photo is Baby Callum celebrating his first…

Cranberry Muffins and Christmas

Our allotment owner Zwena organizes a Christmas get together for us each year at her house with mulled wine and finger food.It is great to see everyone because at this time of year very few of us make regular trips to the plots. My contribution were these delicious cranberry & white chocolate muffins which I read about on allotment2kitchen blog. They are moist and the cranberries add a tart taste to them.
Another person brought this beautifully dressed seasonal cheeseboard.
Zwena's home is an old farmhouse which she has lovingly preserved in its original melamine kitchen units here! I forgot to take a pic of the kitchen which boasts an range for cooking and heating.This real Christmas tree dominates this room, it is all of 11ft high!
The fireplace with the library in the background
A table centre made by Zwena.We had a lovely evening chatting under candle light,we may not see each other on the plots for quite a while so it was nice to see everyone and wish them the Ble…

Christmas make and do

Christmas is all about tradition and I was looking at some of my decorations and remembering where or how I got them.The fat Santa I brought home from a visit to a Christmas market in Brussels about 8 years ago. It was my first visit to one and it was a fairytale experience with snow and mulled wine and a terrific atmosphere.
This hand crafted and painted glass was bought at a Christmas market in Prague about 5 years ago, I went with two of my daughters.The old town square and Charles bridge are out of a bygone age and beautiful even in freezing cold weather. We all bought some of these but only a few survived the journey home!
This angel was made for me by my grandson Ryan when he was about 4 years old he is now 12,a toilet roll holder and gold and silver pipe cleaners become a Christmas Angel.
Youngest son Barry made this when he was 4 and just started school in 1994.
Barry also made this but there is no date on it, a yogurt carton covered with tinfoil becomes a Christmas bell.
The adven…

Great personalised santa video!

I got a link to this santa video where you can put in personal details and photo of a child who can then view a personal message from Santa, my grandchildren were gobsmacked when they saw theirs!
I made this spoof one for youngest son Barry to try it out!
Just click on the link to view or make your own one.

Family Wedding

Youngest daughter Aisling got married to her long time partner Nigel on Friday at a beautiful civil ceremony with a family lunch afterwards.They spent the weekend in Dublin so I was babysitting for the weekend which is why I have not been on blogging for a few days.
The beautifull bride going into the registry office
Most of the wedding group. It was just both families and it was a lovely intimate ceremony and a relaxed lunch and evening afterwards.
Kevin was dressed in his 'James Bond' tuxedo for the day!He was ring bearer and wrote a speech all by himself, after the speeches he wanted to say something so wrote it out and stood up and spoke.
The Murray family all dressed up
Aisling with her brothers.
Aisling always wanted a Christmas wedding with snow, we did not have snow on the day but the Christmas decorations were up and in the evening when it got dark we went to the park nearby which had been transformed into an Enchanted Forest for the Christmas market. We have not seen the p…

The Red Squirrel

I saw my first squirrel yesterday!I should qualify that by saying I have seen lots of them in parks in London and even a couple in the grounds of the little church near ground zero in New York but I had never seen a squirrel in my own country!I was visiting a friend who lives on a farm just outside the city and as I drove down the drive a red squirrel hopped across the drive in front of me and shimmied up a tree to look down at me. I said it to my friend who told me there had been two of them but one had been killed by a dog, they thought the other one had gone so were delighted to know he was back. I did not have my camera with me to take a photo so had to find one online,I also looked up some information on our native Red squirrel

Irish Red squirrel under threat
Tuesday, 9 October 2007 22:18
A new report says Ireland's native red squirrel could be wiped out by a virus carried by the grey squirrel.

The report of the Irish Squirrel Survey 2007, which was launched today, also calls f…

Pot Cake, mince pies and sausage rolls

A wet cold Sunday afternoon so baking was one way of staying warm indoors. My d.Aisling had a hen/kitchen party recently as she is getting married next Friday to her partner Nigel,her future mother in law Ena gave her a loaf tin among other things and at the time I thought that is a waste as Aisling does not bake apart from some rice krispie cakes. Ena makes a pot cake which is a family tradition and has often passed some on to Aisling which I have sampled.Ena also gave the recipe to her, being very optimistic I thought, but a wet Sunday afternoon did the trick! Aisling made the potcake and it turned out so well the first one was eaten before she thought of taking she made a second one!

Ena's Potcake
1 mug of fruit
1 mug of water
1/3 mug of sugar
2 oz margarine
1 egg
2 mugs of self raising flour

Put the fruit, sugar, water and margarine into a pot. Bring to the boil. Reduce heat and allow to simmer for at least 30 mins, stirring often. Remove from heat and allow to cool.…

Pearls of Wisdom

I was out one evening recently and admired a necklace a lady had on,she told me it was a genuine Pearl necklace and she had bought it online for a fraction of the price charged in town.I am not 'into' buying online apart from Ebay and Amazon. I was at a bit of a loose end today and thought of it while on the computer so I went window shopping!
I did a search for pearl necklace and of course all sorts came up but I did find this site and was impressed first of all by the Prices!!The prices are in American dollars but with the exchange rate at the moment they are fantastic value.Bracelets are priced from $24.99 to $74.99 and necklaces from $45.00 earrings $39.00 and there is FREE shipping.
They are Japanese fresh and saltwater pearls 100% genuine,hand knotted and fully appraised.Pearls have a bit of an old fashioned press but I was amazed at the colours, from traditional white to black
Silver grey look nice too, oh decisions! They have a choice of gold or silver clasps and a range …

Allotment after the Storm

A quick visit to the plot to assess any damage done by the recent storms, not all bad but our poor scarecrow did not fare too well even though he is still standing.The cross piece for his arms has come loose and is only held up by the coat sleeves for now. He is standing on a plot we used for onions and since harvesting we have been covering with waste leaves and weeds plus a sowing of a green manure called Phacaelia. He is now nearly knee deep in a nice organic mixture which will be covered (soon) to rest for next year.
The bed behind him has been covered with plastic and we have put on horse manure ,weeds,grass etc and when the cover blew off in the storm I was delighted to see we have a lovely dark organic bed with everything well rotted down.The plastic was pulled back over it to continue its good work.
The Brussel Sprouts also took a battering and the netting blew completely off but there was no bird damage to the stalks.Some of them nearly blew over but the sprouts are growing nic…


My niece Catherine has always wanted to write and is now in the process of publishing her first Book!
Catherine spent a year and a half working in Disneyworld in Florida and the book is an Irish girls sometimes hilarious and quirky view of working in this big organization.
Catherine has also had a piece included in a book 'Working your way around the World' a handbook for anyone contemplating doing just that which is published every few years with updates.
Catherine has already self published a book through Blurb 'Catherine and Sheelagh's Central American Adventure' It is a printed account of the blog she wrote while backpacking after working in Disneyworld.That blog has a link on my blog list on the sidebar.
Lots of people would like to write and self publication is one road to take, Catherine is self publishing Mousetrapped to raise funds for another book she is in the process of writing, her first fiction novel which has been accepted by a publishing house!
For any…