Monday, November 30, 2009

Winter with a bang!

My goodness, winter has arrived here, with a bang!

Beginning of last week, it was mild enough to go to work without a coat, and now, tonight, you'd need to be wrapped up with anything you can find to brave putting your nose outside the door!

And in between, we've had the most dreadful rain, lashings of it, bad floods that have put hundreds of people out of their homes, thunder and lightening, and now frost.

What has eluded us, my favourite of all, ..............SNOW!

But here's a cute little snowman on my Christmas burner oil, which is my giveaway to kick off the Christmas season.

Read more about it on this post.

If you'd like it, just leave a comment by midnight GMT on 2nd December. I'll pick a number (random selection) and the comment number that matches will get a comment on their blog. You then email me your snailmail address, and it'll be posted within a week, in plenty of time for Christmas. If you haven't responded within 2 days, the giveaway moves to the next number.

There it is, leave your comment!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Winner and Thanksgiving

The winner of my giveaway was number 4, so Kerri will get the oil. Sorry that I can't send one to each of you, I'd really love to, but I'll have another one to give away on December 1st, same rules, so do call back!

To today's post, it's (kind of) Thanksgiving.

Yesterday was my birthday, and what a lovely, unusual day!

The public servants here were on strike , so I was on picket duty at 8.30, having left my 3 school-age children fast asleep at home. By the time I got back, they were up and about, ready with their best wishes. There were some lovely surprises too, one of which I'm particularly please to Christy Moore in January. I love Christy's music, and have always intended to go to one of his concerts, and never got round to it. But now hubbie has organised it for us. Andthe venue is also one I've intended to go to, but not yet made it to. 6th January is the date, so I'll tell you all about it after that.

In the evening, the Band had their annual concert in the National Concert Hall- it was a night filled with good food (hubbie and I had a bite to eat beforehand while our kids were hard at work rehearsing on/off stage etc) music and friends. I was filled with mother-pride at my Tuba-playing daughter and my French Horn-playing son. Some of the pieces were well-known (supercalafragalistic), so clapping along made it even more enjoyable. I'm a participative sort of audience!

And I give thanks for having been guided (by eldest daughter) to this wonderful organisation, so full of muscial talent, where young and old, one and all, are embraced and musically nourished to fullness.

And the icing on the cake?

Arrived home to find a gift and this lovely card waiting in my porch! The card is hand-made in India in aid of the Hope Foundation.

Sorry about the poor-quality photography, I'm too tired/lazy to play around with light at this hour of the night.

Life is indeed very rich and good at this moment, and I am very thankful for all of it.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

100th Post! And a Giveaway

I can't believe it, that I made it to 100!

It's been such fun blogging, and taking part in Mellow Yellow Monday, Ruby Tuesday and that party at Willow Manor. And I've really enjoyed meeting all of you, getting to know you, and reading your comments.

So to the giveaway, as you can see it's a Christmas Burner oil, made by yours truly, with pure essential oils of Frankincense, Clove, Fir, Orange and Lemon. It will fill your home with the aroma of Christmas, plum pudding, mince pies etc. Some of these oils, incidentally, are excellent bug-busters, so it's also a good one to burn in winter, to keep colds and flu at bay. If you don't have a burner, don't worry, it will work just as well on a tissue on a radiator.

If you'd like it, just leave a comment by midnight GMT on 24th November. I'll pick a number (random selection) and the comment number that matches will get a comment on their blog. You then email me your snail mail address, and it'll be posted within the week, in plenty of time for Christmas. If you haven't responded within 2 days, the giveaway moves on to the next number.

There it is, now, wherever you are, leave your comment!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Can of Worms, or update on the footie!

Woweee! When I wrote the last post, I had no idea of the furore that was about to break open.

I just dashed off the post, literally as the match ended, very much writing exactly as I felt, definitely without analysing or thinking about it.

And I have to admit that I was only half-watching the match anyway.

Well, it seems one of the French players handled the ball, twice, and scored a goal from so doing. That goal cost Ireland the match, and arguably, their place in the World Cup. The Football Association of Ireland have been calling for a replay, but it's not happening.

The fans, I'm delighted to say, behaved really well, even in the face of such an unfair defeat. The Irish players were devastated. I'm told that even the French newspapers the next day were ashamed and embarassed.

The reaction here has been strong, calling for video evidence in future games, as happens in rugby.

I'm not sure if all this has thrown the country even more into the doldrums, or distracted us from our current economic situation. One thing for sure, it suits the government, the heat is off them and onto Thierry Henry!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009


This is the word being used to describe our final match in the World Cup qualifier series, in Paris.

The best performance in a very long time- this is how our performance is being described, but at the end of the day, we lost and we're not going to South Africa.

Depressing, isn't it? It looked so good at full time, we were 1-0 up, but then in extra time we conceded a goal, and that's it. No trip to the World Cup for us.

The commentators and analysts are busy as I write, but I think it wasn't lost tonight. Ireland always seems to coast along in the early stages of competitions, and then at the end, when we're up against it, they give a magnificent performance, but it's too little too late.

The one shining light has been the fans, and I hope I don't speak (write) too soon. They have behaved very well, and stood behind their team, through good times and bad.

Myself, I'm sorry to say that I'm a fair weather fan. If they had gotten through, I'd be a keen soccer fan after a bit of a sabbatical (since the last World Cup, to be precise!). But I'm afraid I won't be visiting this new stadium any time soon. It's the nearly finished Lansdowne Road, due for completion in 2010, and will host both soccer and rugby matches. Well, with no world cup and some fair weather fans, they can't each have their own stadium, can they?

Monday, November 16, 2009

Mellow Yellow Monday

I love the yellow umbrella in this guy's bike-thing.

These eco-cabs bring you around Dublin, for free! The cyclist is sponsored by whoever has their logo on the bike, and you just give them a tip if you want.

I think it's a brilliant idea, what do you think, and have you come across them in other cities?

Click on the link below to go to Drowsey Monkey and more MYM pictures.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Ruby Tuesday

This little fellow landed on our Velux window last week, stayed a few days, then moved on, but not before I caught him! These pictures are taken through the window, and for once there was a bit of blue in the sky! I should have cropped the water drops from the first one to make it less obvious.

For more RT pics, click on the link below, which takes you to Mary, who hosts this fun meme.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

The house is finished.

A while back, I posted about a fundraising project I was doing, called "Dóchas".

I made 60 jars of aromatherapy hand cream, called "Dóchas" which is Irish for hope, sold them for €10 each, with all proceeds going to Habitat for Humanity, to help build a house in Cape Town.

My brother has returned from building the house and I thought I would post a couple of pics of how it looks. They got the house finished in one week, and the family moved in, delighted.

In this photo, on the left, is the shack where they had been living

so I can imagine that it must be bliss to now have this:

Sorry about the funny faces- I don't have permission to post their faces, and this is my best photoshopping skills.

I am learning, however; the son came along as I was trying to manually smudge the faces, and he has shown me a poly something tool that does it much better and quicker, as in the top photo.

So my new motto is "Every day, my photoshop skills get better and better"!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


"Lord, make me an instrument of your peace;
Where there is hatred, let me sow love."
It's as relevant today as it was in the 13th Century when written by St. Francis of Assisi.
Peace begins within our hearts and our homes.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Mellow Yellow Monday

This is the view from my bedroom window each morning.

Well, not quite so close-up, I did zoom, but that same tree. isn't it wonderful? It's in my neighbour's front garden, and I love it at this time of year.

And here's another one of the same tree. I think the range of colours in it is amazing. The downside (doesn't everything have one?)
is that the leaves blow all over my front garden, but I can live with that.
For more MYM, go to Drowsey Monkey who hosts this wonderful meme.