The Last Commute

The journey begins like this: a small bike, a bobbing orange flag, a larger bike. A dad and his daughter, age four. Destination: the Naoinra. At the start, I wasn’t so sure, but in this father knew best and under our watchful eyes, and with the occasional warning shout, the first rider, and then the second,… Continue reading The Last Commute

A Very Lovely Afternoon Tea

We started one of our favourite family traditions several years ago: afternoon tea in the Atrium at Dublin’s Westin Hotel on Christmas Eve. We go into town on Christmas Eve day to soak up the atmosphere, pick up anything we may have forgotten and see who we run into. It’s busy and fun and filled… Continue reading A Very Lovely Afternoon Tea

Messing about with a Boat…

… Or How to Cope with Anxiety on Holiday Drifting along a canal in a barge seems like a perfect COVID holiday: we’ll get out of the city, won’t be interacting with too many strangers, and will have a chance to do something we’ve wanted to do since we first walked along the canal. We… Continue reading Messing about with a Boat…

C is for Carrauntoohil

Like most good ideas, this one started with a random comment — although almost immediately regretted by the commenter. My son is a scout who is taking part this year in Scouting Ireland’s Mountain Pursuit Challenge: weekend mountain hikes in each of Ireland’s four provinces. This month they were due to hike in Kerry so… Continue reading C is for Carrauntoohil

Taking it Handy

I can’t help you with toilet paper, but I can offer some alternatives to sold out hand sanitiser. I don’t like the commercial stuff: the scent often gives me a headache and the chemicals actually create resistant bacteria which defeats the purpose, doesn’t it? Even though I am a fan of plain soap and water,… Continue reading Taking it Handy


Summertime = roller coaster time.   Whether it was braving the Big Dipper (1958) at Playland during the PNE, August drawing to an end, summer days counting down as fast as those cars travelled, or the holidays at Disneyland, Magic Mountain, Knott’s Berry Farm, with the Matterhorn, Great American Revolution (the first in the world… Continue reading Rollercoaster

Such Cool Tie-Dye

Summertime was always a kitchen season, the three different kitchens of my childhood and teen years often full of steam and the sticky scent of cooking fruit or the tingle of pickling vinegar. Jars were sterilised, huge pots bubbled. We shelled peas for hours, or it could have been weeks. This wasn’t just women’s work,… Continue reading Such Cool Tie-Dye

The Day of Delphine Cake

I had a cake catastrophe. It was late, after a long but lovely day hosting my beloved aunt-in-law for Easter dinner, while also prepping for brunch with friends the next morning, and making cake for birthday cake in the afternoon with even more friends. The witching hour was approaching and the cake would just not… Continue reading The Day of Delphine Cake


So, Easter: that time of year when Ireland hides almost 20000 tonnes of packaging (2016 estimate), finds it, and then disposes of it. It’s been a Plastic-less Lent for me. Unfortunately not plastic-FREE: we’re not there yet. Nonetheless, I’ve been trying to go beyond what I was already doing to cut out single-use items and… Continue reading Sweet

Much More Veg

It takes some doing, this losing plastic, eating fresh and organic. We’ve gone up a notch lately, buying our fruit and veg from a farm that delivers us a jumble of produce each Friday. All the fruit and vegetable boxes are plastic-free. The sturdy cardboard boxes are collected each week, along with any of the… Continue reading Much More Veg