• Family

    Teaching Kids Life Skills Takes ALL The Patience

    Here’s the thing about parenting. You have to teach your kids stuff. WHAT?!?!¬† And not just the basics like walking, talking and avoiding yellow snow. Practical, fend-for-yourself things too. If you don’t, they’ll never have the life skills to live on their own. Let THAT sink in. But here’s the thing people don’t want to say – especially online where we all have a tendency to put our best foot forward. My life is super-duper perfect, by the way. Patiently waiting three lifetimes EVERY SINGLE MORNING while your kid ties his or her shoes (or insert any other thing here) is excruciatingly painful. Especially since you know that shoelace is…

  • happy list

    Happy List: #67

    We’re ending the week in my part of the world with an Irish HEATWAVE! Seriously, folks. 65 degrees Fahrenheit is about as warm as it gets on this little island – even in the summer. Based on the number of people I’ve seen sunbathing on the beach, I’d say quite a few people called in “sick” to work this week. Sick of winter, if you want to get specific! On Monday I shared my leather wrapped rock paperweight. I’m kind of obsessed with it! Wednesday on the blog was all about two-handle kitchen faucets. They are pretty, but I don’t understand why they are practical. Feel free to weigh in…

  • decorating

    I Just Don’t Understand: Two-Handle Kitchen Faucets

    Let’s talk about something I just don’t understand. Genuinely don’t understand. Maybe one of you can clue me in. Let me know what I’m missing. I have seen tons of gorgeous pictures floating around blog-land and HGTV of kitchens with two-handle kitchen faucets. Like this Kingston one from Home Depot. It looks pretty. There’s no doubt about that. But why is a two-handle kitchen faucet a good idea from a practical standpoint? In order to get an ideal temperature that’s not scalding hot, you have to adjust both the hot water AND the cold water handle. (image: Kohler) Doesn’t this make cleaning up extra difficult? Especially if both your hands…

  • Crafts

    Leather Wrapped Rock Paperweight

    Editor’s Note: Late last week hackers redirected all my website traffic to spammy sites. It’s a horrible feeling and a mess to fix! I apologize if you tried to visit this¬†site and weren’t able to do so. Huge thanks to Handy Husband for tackling the problem and kicking them off my happy place! I’d be lost without him! I have a crush. A style crush. Lately, thanks to Instagram, I have found inspiration in the spaces created by Studio McGee. If the name doesn’t sound familiar, you might recognize the fantasy kitchen they designed for HGTV. No biggie, right? (image: Studio McGee) Studio McGee is a small company started in…

  • happy list

    Happy List: #66

    Happy Friday the 13th!! I’m back in action after some time off for Easter Break. As much as I enjoy lazy mornings, I am glad to be back to our routine this week. On Monday I shared all the things I learned about kids throwing paint. Oops – what I meant to say was kids creating art with eggshells filled with paint. On Wednesday I shared our trip to an Irish prison museum. You just never know what you’re going to get when you come here, do you? Also, on a housekeeping note, I’ve been organizing my 4 years of blog content. It took me what felt like 10 years…

  • Ireland,  travel

    Visiting Ireland: Kilmainham Gaol Museum

    When we arrived at Kilmainham Gaol Museum on the west side of Dublin, we were greeted at a big imposing door by a stout-looking Irish man with grey hair. He looked at me and with all seriousness said, “Ah! I see you’ve brought us some long-term guests!” My kids stared at the man and then slowly looked at me like, “He’s joking, right mom? RIGHT?!?!” Have I mentioned that Kilmainham Gaol is a prison? Technically, it WAS a prison. Kilmainham Gaol opened in 1796 on a site known as Gallows Hill. If that doesn’t set the stage for an 18th century prison, I don’t know what does. WHY YOU SHOULD…

  • Crafts

    Egg Painting

    On the list of superficial worst nightmares, kids throwing paint ranks pretty high for me. Twenty kids ages 4 to 11 filling eggshells with paint and throwing the eggs (hopefully) at a canvas? What could possibly go wrong?!?! Oh, I could think of one or a million things! Especially when I saw there was a bottle of glitter paint. Now there’s paint AND glitter? I am not ashamed to say it was one of those ‘back slowly away and let the other moms handle it’ kind of moments. As you can tell, egg painting was not my idea. This is why I am thankful for braver, more creative, more patient…

  • Uncategorized

    Spring Break and an Irish Blessing

    I hope you had a lovely Easter. Here’s an Irish blessing to start your week: May love and laughter light your days, and warm your heart and home. May good and faithful friends be yours, wherever you may roam. May peace and plenty bless your world with joy that long endures. May all life’s passing seasons bring the best to you and yours! I’m hopping off the blog this week to spend time with Handy Husband and the kiddos. If we end up doing anything exciting, I’ll be sure and post it on Instagram. Have a happy week!

  • happy list

    Happy List: #65 Happy Easter

    Hello, hello! Happy Good Friday and early Easter to you! Easter is a huge religious holiday in Ireland, but not as commercial as what I am used to in the U.S. Less commercialism is probably a good thing. This week I shared a recipe that would be delicious to serve for Easter brunch: Blueberry Buckle Coffee Cake. I also wrote about my Easter egg crafting session. The result was a spring feeling in my heart and sheet music eggs on my table! Here’s the Happy List. PHOTO COLORIZATION PROJECT Black and white photos can be hard to related to. I think that’s one reason why it is so fascinating to…

  • Crafts,  decorating,  holidays

    Sheet Music Easter Eggs

    Confession time. Things don’t feel very Easter-y around here. It’s not a holiday I typically decorate for and with our recent snowstorms, it hasn’t quite felt like spring around these parts. So I decided I would craft myself into a spring mood. Nothing says spring rebirth like styrofoam eggs, so that’s what I started with. My first attempt at decorating my fake eggs was a major flop. It’s also a reminder of why I try to avoid Pinterest. My second attempt was much more successful. I made Sheet Music Easter Eggs, which I’m not sure are actually spring-looking, but they are more my style. Making Sheet Music Easter Eggs is…