• holidays

    Happy 4th of July

    One of the things I enjoy most about moving is the opportunity to explore a new area. It’s the unexpected details of an area that delight and inspire me the most. For instance, we hiked a new-to-us trail last week at Tourne County Park, a 565-acre park with an extensive trail system. I expected to feel the burn up that long hill. I expected to see wildlife and get bitten by mosquitoes. I expected to have a discussion about which plants were poison ivy – seemingly all of them. I expected my kids to ask for a snack before we’d even left the trailhead. I expected someone to parkour their way…

  • Crafts,  holidays

    Burlap American Flag Centerpiece

    Let me tell you a little something. There’s only so much “settling in” a person can do in a new home before a break is needed. I’d normally take a break on a comfy couch with a cold drink in hand. Maybe kick my feet up on a cute ottoman. Alas, I don’t have a couch yet. Or a cute ottoman. I do have a cold drink though. Priorities! In lieu of time on the couch, I decided I’d recharge with a cold drink and a crafting session. I might not have a place to sit, but I do have paintbrushes. Go figure. I also have a random burlap bag…

  • holidays

    Memorial Day

    Is it correct to say “happy” Memorial Day? After all, it is a day to remember those who died serving in the United States armed forces. Perhaps it is just one of those things we say because the holiday has also morphed into the unofficial start of summer and a long weekend to spend with friends and family. Happy might not be the right word, but I am extraordinarily grateful for the men and women who have served our nation. There was a period in our country’s history when military service was required. Having never lived through an era when I was really ‘forced’ to do anything, not to mention…

  • 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…

  • Crafts,  holidays

    St. Patrick’s Day Ideas

    I’ve been so wrapped up in snowstorms that I forgot spring is on its way. Or, rather, spring is SUPPOSED to be on its way. She sure is taking her sweet time! I’m ready for warmer temperatures and pretty flowers, but as it turns out, Mother Nature cares nothing about my opinion. How rude! Father Time, on the other hand, keeps marching forward so in 10 days it will be St. Patrick’s Day! There is no better place to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day than in Ireland, but if you can’t be here with me, perhaps these ideas will get you in a festive mood. Irish Flag Centerpiece It doesn’t get easier…

  • holidays,  Ireland

    St. Valentine’s Remains Are In Dublin

    Hold onto your pink teddy bear and open up your box of mystery chocolates because I have an interesting Valentine’s Day story for you! The actual saint that kicked off this entire multi-billion dollar holiday is St. Valentine and his remains are indeed located in Dublin. I read about this link between Valentine’s Day and Ireland on a site called Irish Customs and Culture. You’ll have to read the full account yourself because it is quite detailed. And we all know digging into the minutiae, as important as it may be, is not my love language. That’s why there are experts. Now, as I understand the story… The remains were…

  • holidays,  Ireland

    Living in Ireland: Festival of Trees

    I hope you had a wonderful Christmas! Before we say goodbye to 2017, I thought I’d share one last holiday-themed post. One of the things I’ve enjoyed or found the most interesting about living in Ireland is seeing how the locals celebrate the various holidays. Ireland doesn’t have the Christmas markets that other European countries are famous for, but it does have plenty of other events for locals (and visitors!) to enjoy. This year a friend invited us to see the Festival of Trees at Christ Church in Bray. Bray is a cute seaside town south of Dublin. It’s one of the farthest points south that you can live from…

  • Family,  holidays

    Merry Christmas

    From our family to yours, we wish you a merry Christmas! Many thanks to my friend Meg for lugging her camera 7 miles and up a mountain to get this family photo – one of the few we took this year – and to my children for cooperating so well. We hope your Christmas is filled with love, good food and many happy moments. Share this:

  • decorating,  holidays

    Christmas Around Our Home 2017

    While my kids would have loved for us to truly douse the house in Christmas everything, I prefer a lighter touch when it comes to Christmas decorating. In fact, I’ve already donated 5 bags of stuff this month because all the extra decor out for Christmas is making me twitchy. My closets are looking nice and tidy though! The mantel in the living room we never use is decorated with some greenery, ceramic trees and one of my favorite projects of all time – a DIY wood dove. I can see the mantel from the doorway though, so it’s not a complete waste. I made a wreath from yard clippings for…

  • Crafts,  decorating,  holidays

    Christmas Tree 2017

    I was gung-ho to decorate for Christmas this year. Then I opened the Christmas boxes stuffed with holiday decor. I looked at all the glitz and glitter and did not feel that burst of fa-la-la-magic. Instead, I felt like a tall, curly-haired grinch. Minus the green complexion. However, the kids were excited to douse the house in Christmas everything! Even though I FELT like a grinch, I didn’t want to BE a grinch. So we blasted Christmas music and got to work spreading holiday cheer around the house. I set the Christmas tree up in the living room in front of the big window. Then I just looked at it…