What I Learned This Week.


  • The average family uses six trees a year in paper, that’s a lot of trees !.
  • There are some amazing artists using waste to make beautiful works of art and here are two Ian Berry and Jane Perkins .
  • I am not a huge fan of bought smoothies they are normally a little sour for me but when I was shopping Friday I picked up two Innocent super smoothies tropical protein and the strawberry protein one and they are really good, creamy and not sour like it’s full of orange juice.
  • That spider plants have very pretty white flowers.
  • That if you really want something there is very little that will stop you, on Friday the new magazine I have been lucky enough for launched and I will be writing a monthly piece about slow living. Here is my first piece you can read it here
  • Its only 19 days now till I will be 40 !!!!
  • For anyone that enjoys a good planner and also likes to colour Johanna Basford has one out now. Its a 16 month planner with a page to colour each week, I got mine from Amazon and it arrived on Thursday.

Europe’s Largest Outdoor Festival.


On Wednesday and Thursday last week myself and the farmers headed to Europe’s largest outdoor festival ! . When I think of festivals I think of summer time, loads of music, face paints, shorts and fancy wellies and very trendy famous people with farming being the last thing I would think of. Europe’s largest outdoor festival is actually all things farming, food and enterprise with a little bit of music and dancing thrown in but no muddy fields full of tents. The National ploughing Championships this year were on Tues, Wed and Thurs the 19th to 21st of September and was held in Screggan in Co Offaly.  The ploughing is a yearly event that over the three days attract over 200,000 people, they come from far and near to see millions of euro worth of machinery, livestock and food. This day out is planned from one year to the other in a lot of houses and we haven’t missed it in years. This is an event for not just the farming community but for everyone as there is just so much to see and do and even though the weather this year on the Wednesday was crap we still wouldn’t have missed it, after all isn’t that what rain gear is for ?

This year was also a little special as the eldest farmer ( on the right) received his award from Dairymaster on the Wednesday and was presented it to him by the Minister for Agriculture, Micheal Creed. The two lads worked hard ( partied hard )on their thesis and it payed off in the end, they both started college together and received their awards together as well.

There were lots of cute animals to see and also a pink Valtra tractor for breast cancer, I couldn’t convince the farmers that we really needed this tractor.

For the last couple of years I have curated the @IrelandsFarmers twitter account on the Wednesday of the ploughing, taking photos and some videos during the day to share with the over 12k followers the account has, this year I got to curate for two days, the Wed and Thurs and it was made extra special as on the Wednesday it and myself were number 1 in the top 5 journalists to follow for the plouging which I was delighted with as its a great account giving people a inside view of real life on a farm. Here is the link below.

We put together a list of the top 5 journalists tweeting from #ploughing17. https://t.co/MLUMACCPCH

So that’s the ploughing over for another year and we are all looking forward to next year already, Roll on September 2018.

 

What I Learned This Week.


  • That you need to visit new places to see your home/ farm with fresh eyes.
  • That the summer weeks have started to speed up a little on me.
  • That we are going everyday to the RDS Dublin horse show our tickets arrived yesterday.
  • That high waisted jeans are the only way to go to stop that god awful over hang on my jeans and possibly stop eating so much junk but we will start with the high waisted jeans.
  • I have found a way of stopping Sid telling me he is hungry all day long, make him a breakfast smoothie. He isn’t half as hungry now during the day.
  • The summer heat has disappeared.
  • That my blogging plan went arse ways this week.
  • That I am going to do the August Break with Susannah Conway and I can’t wait. I have loved her blog for years now.

Our Summer Adventures: Week 1 and 2.


Sorry there was no post yesterday but I want to share with you some of our adventures we are having this summer so I will be posting on a Tuesday now instead of a Monday. For the summer Mondays are mine, the farmer and Sids day off so we are trying to head away from  the yard for that day. So last week it was the farmer who decided where we went and we headed to the beautiful city of Kilkenny. This is a beautiful place to visit with so much to see and do. We parked in the car park beside the river which wasn’t expensive, we were parked most of the day. We headed to the shopping centre first and then back down the town to get some lunch. Now being coeliac getting food out when we are away is always a little nerve wracking because you want to get good food and also not limit the farmers as to where they can eat so we tried Langtons, they had a huge choice for us all and there was no problem with me getting gluten free. After lunch we headed to see the castle which just like something out of a fairy tale. You can go on a tour of the castle but we didn’t we just enjoyed the grounds which has a playground, acres of grass to play on and a beautiful rose garden.

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We then headed back to look at the rest of the shops along the streets of Kilkenny and stopped into a little cafe just across from Kytelers Inn for the best scones and tea I have tasted in ages they even have gluten free. We spent the whole day in Kilkenny and enjoyed every minute of it, its a beautiful place and Sid didn’t get bored once.

So yesterday it was my choice and I brought the farmer and Sid to the Irish national stud and Japanese gardens in Kildare. There is free parking at the stud, there are picnic tables in the car park if you didn’t want to buy food when you were there. It cost 29euro for the three of us to entry the stud which isn’t expensive when you see the size and the up keep of the place. We went to see the gardens first and they are so pretty with a stone track to follow and a map to explain each stop on the way.

Sid loved exploring the gardens and looking into all the little tunnels and caves. When we were finished in the garden we headed to the restaurant for our lunch. It was 33euro for the three of us for our lunch and there are lots of gluten free options on the menu.

We ate our lunch out on the terrace and this was our view along with a swan and her baby.

 

After lunch we headed to the best bit or for me anyway, the stud farm. This place is just a horse lovers dream but it is equally beautiful for anyone. On the stud you get to look around all the stable yards, the stallions have air conditioning in their stables!. You get to meet some mares and their foals, see some of the top stallions they have and meet some legends of racing like Hardy Eustace, who we got to rub he is really friendly.

We got to visit the racing museum, see a video of a foal being born in the stud and learn a little about the man who started the stud back in 1900, Colonel William Hall Walker and how he believed the stars sealed the faith of each foal born and that every horse should be able to see the stars from their stable.

There is a playground near the mares and foals and also a fair door trail right around the stud for the kids to follow. Each fairy they find has an important job on the stud and each child gets a map for them to follow. Sid loved this but he did want to take home this foal, she was such a friendly little thing looking for rubs from everyone who went past. This is a great day out for all the family even if you have no interest in horses and its fully accessible to buggies or wheelchairs.

So there are our first two summer adventures, where have you been this summer on your adventures ? would love to hear all about them.

What I Learned This Week.


  • It’s a dogs life ! This is my shadow who follows me everywhere she can and most mornings sneaks upstairs for a snuggle.
  • That the old ways are still the best sometimes, like leaving Sids porridge out on the window sill to cool down because he is STARVING as he is always telling me.
  • That its good to meet up with family and friends you haven’t seen in years and just catch up.
  • That if you get an invite to one wedding in a year you will get an invite to ten.
  • That its just too warm at the moment for porridge for me.
  • That when the farmers are spreading slurry I need a room that they can leave all their clothes and boots in and get a wash before they come into the house !. The slight smell of slurry in the house is not pleasant.
  • That this years potatoes haven’t reached that burst open dryness yet and they are still really expensive.
  • That you can be a tourist and have a lovely day away less than two hours from home if you set your mind to it.
  • That my gluten free cornflakes has so much more added sugar than just normal cornflakes, which I don’t understand.
  • That the best cup of tea I have had in a cafe in ages and the best gluten free scone I have ever had I got in a little cafe in Kilkenny just across the street from Kytelers Inn in the city. The scone beat the ones I get in Avoca hands down! and the farmer said their normal scones were amazing and only 4.95 for tea/coffee and a scone.

 

So there is what I have learned this week, how has your week been? 

The Power Of Three.


One question I am away’s asked is ” How do you manage to fit in everything you have to do in a day?” and up until a few months ago I wonder as well how I managed it. I do know that a lot of things were missed on and I was constantly chasing my tail in a state of constant stress about what I had to do and beating myself up about stuff that was forgotten or just not done. I wasn’t as organised as I am now and I had no direction from week to week.

That was when I started to look at Slow living a lot more and I came across planning your day into three’s. Now this might not work for everyone but it has been a huge help to me and I actually get so much more done now than I ever have. I am not beating myself up anymore that I haven’t reached on my to do list for the day/week and I am not stressed about how much I have to do, so I wanted to share it with you as well.

At the start of my week, normally Monday morning at breakfast I take a few minutes to see what really needs to be done that week, the things that just can’t be put off and I pick three as my main todo’s for the week. If there is more than three that could be done I add them to the list in case I get the three main ones done and have some time to do more.

So for example for me this week my main three are : order a skip , cut the grass and sort college for Liam. These are my main three but then I have six others on the list if I have time to get them done then it’s a bonus this week and if not at least the main three are done. I do the same when I am in work so I will have a list for work and for home.

I then break each day down into three’s as well, so say today my three is pony camp, moving calves and going to the bank on top of my ususal housework, dinner making jobs. I will be delighted to get these all done but I also have extras on the list if I get to them and if I don’t I will be happy with getting my three done. This system for me has been a life saver and has taken all the stress and pressure out of my day because I am always getting my three done and that’s such a good feeling, it also makes me more organised so I nearly always get all the extras on the list done. As well I have found if I have reached my three at lunch time I don’t feel guilty anymore heading off with Sid somewhere in the afternoon because I have reached my set goal for the day.

Three things a week and three things a day is also a very reachable goal for anyone, setting yourself three goals a day you are getting 18 little jobs done in six days on top of your general day to day which is a lot of extra done a week. I have found it a total life saver and I am on top of all my jobs which were just piling up on me because now I have been slowly chipping away at them with no pressure. Now there will be times when you might have to change your three a day half way through the week, maybe you or a little person in your house is sick or you have visitors or just life in general gets in the way. When this happens me I still stick to my three main things for the week but am freer with my three for the day.

The power of three is so good, I have no stress now at the start of the week about all that has to be done and none of that feeling you get when you set yourself a target and don’t meet it which is great. It motivates me to do more each week with no pressure because if I only reach my three I am happy its not 23 things I have to do.

I hope you try it and find it as helpful as I have ! if you do try it let me know how you get on. 

What I Learned This Week.


  • I learned yesterday how to to take moody photos like the one of Sid above.
  • I learned that its really nice to meet people you know for years online off line.
  • That I have an idea for something floating around in my head for a while and maybe I should start seeing can I get it into action.
  • I learned that if you work hard enough anything is possible after a really nice email from my editor.
  • I learned that the only way to stop having to go everyday to the shop is to do a really good weekly food shop, only had to go for milk and read once this week.
  • I had thought all my hormonal issues were easing up the last few months but no it hit with force again this month.
  • I learned that the only way I can have a productive week is to use my planning by three.
  • I also learned that even when I have it all planned and have the best intentions there are times when I just won’t get it all done.
  • That we need to just stop and make the most of time when we are off from work, myself and Sid decided on Wednesday to just head to the beach and we had a great time.
  • That I would read a lot of books if I didn’t have to work.

What did you learn this week?