Monday, July 11, 2016


Wow, four months since my last post!! Hopefully somebody out there is still reading this blog :-)

It's been a really busy four months!! We found a lovely house, spent two weeks bidding on it against three other bidders, got it and waited three long months till we could move in!!

It is SO fantastic to be home owners again. Whilst renting while we lived in Sydney and for our first 20 months or so back in Ireland gave us a lot of freedom regarding where we lived, we had totally gotten sick of being tenants, not having the freedom to make changes we'd like to our homes and not having the security and certainty of living in a home we own ourselves.

We LOVE the house we have bought! It's right in the area we wanted to buy, straight across the road from our favourite park and has a lovely big green out the front where the boys now spend so much time playing with other kids and getting lots of fresh air :-)

The house was already in nice decorative condition mostly, warm white walls, oak floors, a bright sunroom at the back and a really sunny, nicely landscaped back garden. So it was ready for us to move straight into. It has a lovely fireplace, large window in the living room overlooking the green and the beautiful mature trees of the park across and the much hoped for 4 bedrooms, downstairs toilet, ensuite and good sized family bedroom. There are changes we want to make, the kitchen is a dated oak style and despite the kitchen/dining room being a really good size there are not that many cupboards (by my standards anyway, I have so much kitchen stuff as you may be aware) so the plan, hopefully in the next couple of years, is to extend across the full width of the house at the back and open it up to make a really big kitchen/dining/living space at the back with a nice long kitchen and island for me to be a happy mammy in :-)

That's not happening immediately though so for now we are doing little mini-projects such as adding shelves to a blank wall in the kitchen, jazzing up the hallway, decorating the boys' room and possibly painting the kitchen cupboards and putting in new tiles as a "for now" makeover.

Also, two days after moving in, we threw our first house party to celebrate our youngest son's first holy communion, 25 family members, heaps of food, a cute dessert table for the kids and a really great day, not sure how we did it with all the chaos of moving, but we did (with a LOT of help from our parents, they were amazing)!!

Also, since my last post I have also finally clicked with Instagram! I joined a couple of times before but didn't really take to it but now I am loving using it as a little scrapbook of stuff we get up to, I am keeping my account private so I have the freedom to upload photos of the boys, refer to them by name and share what we're up to without worrying about strangers being able to see them, but here is a little of what we have been up to over the last few months, home decor, fun with the boys, enjoying the weather warming up etc...

Enjoying the great outdoors, lots of hikes, drives and enjoying the parks and mountains nearby :-)

Various little projects and homemaking fun finding new spots for our favourite things :-)

Some vintage buys and new additions to my Le Creuset collection (more on that in another post).

 Enjoying the gorgeous view out our front window!

The dessert table at D's Communion party, it was a big hit!

My flower addiction is a lot more economical these days thanks to Aldi!

And finally, how gorgeous is this Eiffel Tower my youngest drew for me? Definitely deserving of a frame :-)

Thursday, March 10, 2016

The weekend

Don't you just love a great weekend? Last weekend was one of those :-) We woke up to snow on Friday morning, there was MASSIVE excitement and screeching and that was just me! Needless to say the boys were itching to get out into it the very second they saw it. There was just a thin layer but enough to make everything white and for the boys to play out in for half an hour scraping together some snowballs before going to school, it was so lovely watching them play with the snowflakes falling down on their happy little faces.

It melted pretty quickly and even by the time we got to school the daffodils had shaken most of the snow off.

On Friday evening, my wonderful Dad came over to mind the boys and my hubby and I headed into town, first to Davy Byrne's for a few drinks and dinner and then to the long awaited Adele concert!

I absolutely love Adele, her voice is amazing, all of her songs are just fantastic and she just seems like such a nice, funny, down-to-earth person. So I had hugely built this concert up in my mind in the months leading up to it, expecting it to be ABSOLUTELY BRILLIANT!!!

AND she did not disappoint! She was absolutely fantastic, her songs had everyone captivated and her chat in between songs was just so funny she had us all in bits laughing. It was a fantastic night and definitely worth the wait!!

We had a lazy day on Saturday, soccer matches cancelled due to weather (yaaay!!)

Then Sunday was mothers day and I had the loveliest day. I was given gorgeous handmade cards and treats and a yummy breakfast in bed with daffodils from the garden :-) My eldest son made the gorgeous meringue cakes below for an afternoon treat and we went to our local Italian restaurant for dinner. I was absolutely spoilt by all my lovely fellas and feel very, very lucky :-)

Now I just need to work off all the calories ;-)

Monday, February 15, 2016

Another Kitchen

In the last 12 years we have lived in 6 different homes. In Sydney we traded up as we needed to space-wise, first we lived in a one-bedroomed apartment with stunning city views, then our first little man came along and soon we moved on to a 2 bedroomed house, then munchkin no. 2 came along and we moved on to a 3 bedroomed house, no. 3 arrived and we needed more space inside and out so we got a house with a big garden and playroom, we lived very happily there for 3 and a half years until the owner needed the house back for family and then our last home in Sydney was a 4 bedroomed house with a big rumpus room and massive deck overlooking a gorgeous National Park.

Then we moved back to Ireland and made the decision to rent again whilst settling back into life here. Now 18 months later we are house-hunting for a permanent house to buy and live in for a long time!! I can't wait to move, the house we are renting is OK but the garden is pretty blah and we need more space! Also I am DYING to get stuck into some DIY projects and really have a home that reflects OUR tastes rather than the choices of the owners.

While renting we have been very limited in what we can do decor-wise, tenants aren't allowed to put screws or nails in the walls, or paint or change flooring so apart from furniture and ornaments and things like that we've been pretty limited.

But still we have managed to make each house our home, with all our things, mementoes, photos, kids' drawings etc.

I am aching to do a kitchen reno and have my dream stove/cabinets/worktops etc. But for now this is where I spend about 75% of my time...

It's not a bad kitchen or anything, it has benefits such as good appliances, a pull out pantry and good daylight, but the oak cabinetry, speckled effect laminate countertops and patterned lino are not to my taste at all. Still, I've managed to put my own stamp on it with my various kitchen things and it's a nice place to cook :-)

This is one of my favourite spots in the kitchen. I love ceramic lidded flip top jars and have built up a nice collection in different colours and patterns and my gorgeous little blue onion/egg basket is so cute.

You may remember my bread bin make-over from a few years back. It now serves as a little tea/coffee station.

I don't drink tea or coffee myself but have noticed that here in Ireland people start to panic if they're not offered a cuppa within 30 seconds of entering your home so I thought it would be a nice to have a spot to keep everything together.

Inside the bread bin are various teas and coffees and on top are my Orla Kiely jars containing sugar and more teabags and a pretty Cafetiere and percolators.

If you'd like to see a couple of our other rental kitchens I managed to make my own (I say MY own as I'm the only cook in the house ;-) you can see them here and here.

I am still daydreaming about white cabinetry, timber open shelves, grey granite countertops and oak flooring though :-)