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Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Update

So it's been a REALLY long time since I posted on here.

Main reason being that I'm 6 months pregnant with our first baby :) Due December 9th.
So we've been busy getting prepared for our new arrival and sorting stuff out.

I'm not going to promise anything in terms of this blog. I'll pretty much post when I feel up to it. It won't be regular. I do still have lot of ideas for posts written down - I just need to get around to writing them :P

So that's my brief update for now. We're really looking forward to our new arrival and the challenges that will bring.

Tuesday, 11 April 2017

Ireland - Donegal (photo heavy post)

I really liked Donegal. We didn't spend all that much time there - only driving (on a bit of a tiki tour) through but it left quite an impression on me.
We started off in the town of Donegal where we had spent the previous night and headed off in the direction of the Slieve League cliffs. We drove through quite a few cute fishing villages on the way.
Slieve League was amazing. They are the tallest sea-facing cliffs in Europe. Apparently there are some falcons that nest there which we were hoping to see, but alas, we didn't see any.
From there we worked our way to Ardara (my bro-in-law's GF's family is from there) and then we went via Glenveagh National Park on the way to Northern Ireland.
NB - all these photos were taken by AJ. I would link to his website but he's changed something and I can't link to individual photos.

Donegal town






On the way to Slieve League






Slieve League






The countryside is Donegal








A pile of peat


We got stuck behind heaps of these tractor/trailers



Ardara



More Donegal countryside









Glenveagh National Park





More countryside



Thursday, 6 April 2017

Wild weather

So, the whole North Island has pretty much been ravaged by the remains of Cyclone Debbie. We don't usually get it all that bad, but actually developed a pond in our backyard...


Thursday, 23 March 2017

My Favourite Blogs

I have a habit of following waaaaaay too many blogs and it kinda irritates AJ a little bit when I'm constantly reading them. But oh well...
I read a multitude of different types of blogs but the following are some of my favourites.


300 Days of England
Barbara is and Italian gal who lived in England for a while (guess how long) and is now living in Melbourne. I love her random posts about life in general which go from comparing the different places she's lived to observing people on the train. That doesn't even cover a fraction of her awesomeness though. Her writing style is amazing and I highly recommend you check her out.


The Fern Life
I don't even know where to begin with Fern. She is freaking awesome. She a Kiwi mother of four kids but doesn't let that define her. Her writing style is awesome and she is so frank and truthful with what she writes (at least it appears that way). It's like she's actually talking to you and I love that in a blog. I don't like it to be forced and it doesn't appear that she does. She also has a youtube channel where she vlogs. Also, she's shaving her head for charity today which I think is flipping amazing (I'm still building up the guts to do it - I want to though). Go check out her blog and maybe her youtube channel too for an entertaining look at the Fern life :P


Blissful and Domestic
I've been following Danielle's blog for years. She blogs about family life on a budget and has even written her own book on the subject! She's the mother to three kids and they have just moved to Arizona. She's always posting about ways to save money and this includes the occasional recipe. Lately she hasn't been posting quite as much as she has a baby but she also has a youtube channel that you can check out.


Pink Confetti
Nicola is an English blogger who blogs about all sorts of lifestyle bits and bobs. She also blogs about places she has travelled to which I find fascinating to read. She reviews all sorts of things from makeup to restaurants and although I'm unlikely to go restaurants in London - it's still fun to read.


Always Made With Love
Lydia lives in the same city (though I suspect a very different suburb) to me and has two gorgeous kiddies. I love how she reviews a lot of New Zealand brands which I'm not necessarily aware of - especially for children (I'm not pregnant yet, I just like to be prepared). She also posts about life with a toddler and baby as well as some recipes - all of which are easy as. Love this blog :)


I'm going to leave this at five for now. They are in no order whatsoever and there are lots more that I follow that I also enjoy. But these are the ones that sprang to mind when I decided to write about my favourite blogs. I hope you go check them all out and enjoy them as much as I do.

Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Ireland - Carrowmore Megalithic Cemetery

Carrowmore Megalithic Cemetery was amazing for me. Keep in mind that I come from New Zealand - a country that was only settled by humans (the Maori people) in about 1250AD. I love the fact that there is so much history in Ireland compared to where I come from.
So, for a girl like me to go to a place that has heaps of passage tombs and dolmens from 3700-2900BC, I was so freaking excited.
 A passage tomb (as far as archaeologists have been able to work out)  is a narrow passage made of large stones and one or multiple burial chambers covered in earth or stone. A dolmen is a type of single-chamber megalithic tomb, usually consisting of two or more vertical megaliths supporting a large flat horizontal capstone.

So enough rambling about how excited I was etc...

Carrowmore Megalithic Cemetery is just outside of the city of Sligo and has 30 surviving tombs (probably more in the past but they probably fell victim to quarrying, farming etc in the past). It is the oldest megalithic cemetery in Ireland. It was only €5.00 for a self guided tour and you also paid a deposit for a map of the place but I can't remember how much that was. AJ and I had so much fun looking at all the dolmen and passage tombs and even went off the beaten track a bit to find a barrow that was marked on the edge of the map.

The following photos all come from my husband's website ajchimaera.com and are some of the better tombs from Carrowmore (when linking the pics blogger is telling me that https isn't working or something - I assure you - the website is safe - I'm no techno whiz).











If you are slightly into history - especially from the Megalithic period - I highly recommend going here. We (two nerds) had such a great time exploring the cemetery. Well worth getting the map.


Tuesday, 7 March 2017

Ireland - Aran Islands

So, I decided that it was about time that I restarted my travel posts. In continuation of our 2014 European trip - here's a post from the Aran Islands in Ireland.



The Aran Islands are a group of  three islands off the west coast of Ireland. Each of the islands has a small airport but the main way to get there as tourists is by ferry from either Doolin or Galway.

We opted to catch the ferry from Doolin and spent the day on Inishmore - the largest and most popular. We hired a bike when we got there and cycled off towards the NW tip of the island. If we were to go there again, we would either stay the night or go to one of the other islands. We felt we were pressed for time all day and I struggled on the bike. If I remember correctly, we had 5 hours total and got back to the wharf with about 15mins to spare. It was a very picturesque island, although because we were there at peak time it was very busy. I'd love to experience it after all the day tourists had gone home for the day.

The view from the wharf at Doolin. There's a little beehive-looking structure on the little island.

What we thought was the queue for our ferry - most of these people were waiting for a tour for the Cliffs of Moher. Had to push our way through the throngs to reach our boat.

The view of the Cliffs of Moher from our ferry.

Inisheer from the ferry

Inisheer

A beautiful dolphin that decided to have a bit of fun. Well done to AJ on getting this picture - it disappeared just after this.

Inishmaan (I think)

Coming into Inishmore

Inishmore


Cute decrepit old cottage

Me looking pleased with life... To be fair, my bike was crap - the gears kept seizing up.

Kilmurvey Beach

Traditional currach.

Dun Eoghanachta. Hardly any people here.

The walls of Dun Eoghanachta.

A random bathtub. Weird things was, it was all hooked up to plumbing.

Seven churches (none of them had roofs).

AJ left me behind and headed to the NW tip of the island. This is the view from there. 

A different view of Kilmurvey Beach.



Our ferry "Happy Hooker". Used to be a fishing boat.


Harbour master at Doolin was doing donuts on his jetski.