Sunday, 17 July 2011

A Walk in the Park

Before moving to the country, from Dublin, we enjoyed living within a mile of the beach and a lovely public park. Both wonderful amenities for the local community, especially for the likes of us with kids (& a puppy at the time).
So when we moved we really missed being able to go for walks in the park, and the kids playing on their favourite fallen tree stump or in the playground.
But little by little we began to explore our new area. There is Dun Na Ri forest park not to far away from us in Kingscourt, open to the pubic all year round and it has a river running through it! Our boys favourite part of  the park.
They have already discovered its bridges/stepping stones and we think we have found all of its paths.
Pic taken early last year on one of our first visits
We love going to this park, and thought ourselves very lucky to have found one with more things to explore than in the Dublin park.
Then we found another Bailieborough.
This one doesn't have the river flowing through it, but it does have a lake instead!
The boys prefer the river to the lake to play around but our dog prefers the lake lol
Yesterday we took a trip to it while the rain stayed away, to get the boys/dog out for a good walk.
Rusty going for a swim!
The Bailie park does have one feature that the boys love.......their very own 'climbing frame' (who needs man-made monkey frames!)
So while they were climbing, (or attempting to climb) I explored a bit and found these gorgeous fruit!
Wild Raspberries
I couldnt believe it! I have never seen Raspberries in the wild before, and they tasted yummy too, myself and second son had a taste, first son not so brave.

And of course what kinda park would it be without the good auld Blackberry?? they are here in abundance (in flower).

I think we will be back when they ripen, as the only Blackberries around us are on the main road, with the traffic fumes on them!

We wandered on (after the boys had enough of climbing) and went on the hunt for Foxgloves, but we found a field of these purple flowers instead..
After much 'googling' I cannot find the name of this wildflower/weed, and its everywhere around here at the moment, in full bloom.

Our walk took an adventurous turn when the heavens opened and the huge drops of rain threatened to drown us if we didn't take shelter. And where better to shelter than in among the trees. Now Conifers are not the best for shelter but we managed to find a good auld Beech tree off the beaten track.
This was our 'view' for the 10 minutes it rained...

While we waited for the rain to ease off, I spotted some Foxglove in among the trees right behind us!

Think a visit to Dun Na Ri is next, wellies and rain jackets on! Dont ya just love our Irish summer?

And today, as a sounvenir of our walk, I have an infected bite the size of a 2 euro coin on my left elbow!! I hate those pesky mosquito bites, but could be worse, I've only one.

Tuesday, 12 July 2011

The Good, the Bad & the Ugly

I didnt know how to start my blog today, but maybe I will share things in the order of the title (courtesy of that old Western film with the easily recognisable title music).

The Good...
We bought 6 Raspberry plants a few months ago, but never got round to finding a suitable spot to plant them in (yet). The idea was to make a raised bed especially for them, with a windbreak around them for protection. But unfortunately they are not a priority so far. So I have them tucked in beside our resident Blackcurrant bushes, which are happily living, setting root, and bulging with fruit (havent picked them just yet).
We didnt give much hope for the Raspberries stuck in their 2 litre pots, until we spotted some fruit! have eaten a few ripes ones already and they're gorgeous!

And our first Tomatos have started to show as well!!!
I knew if I stopped worrying about them something good might happen!! yay!!

The Bad...
Over the past few days we have had a daily invasion of the neighbours goats. Not sure which ones but they have been doing consistant damage. We reckon its one of the younger kids because of the damage done.
After the first invasion I did a recheck of the wire fence on the offending ditch which they must have been crossing. I found where I thought they were getting in (jumping over our wire fence!) and blocked it back up. The following day they had come back in and this time breaking 2 young apple trees and one pear tree in half. I came very close to tears when I saw them!

Even our last surviving Sunflower got beheaded!

The Ugly
So in the meantime we have to use other pieces of timber to block up where we think they are getting in until we have our new fencing panels in place.............not the nicest view !!

Tuesday, 5 July 2011

oooh our Pepper plants are flowering!!

I was nervous planting out our Peppers a few weeks ago, having never grown them before. I put three in per grow bag, gave them a good watering and hope for the best.

Then the slugs attacked two, leaving nothing but the stem! And the rest seemed as if they werent growing there for a while.
I have begun to realise that the less attention one pays to things growing the better they take care of themselves!
The two plants that were slugs dinner have grown back fully and the rest have started sprouting wee flower buds...........the first two/three opened today!

And while I was in the mood for taking photos heres a pic of the gorgeous Gaillardia 'goblin', its first flower in bloom:

And equally gorgeous Echinacea purpurea:

Sunday, 3 July 2011

The builders have started!

When we sold our house in Dublin we never thought we would end up with a house that is as old as this one. We dont have an actual age, the nearest date we have is that it was built prior to 1965.
Well thats not too bad, except this house once had its toilet in a shed out the back! Now what age could it be? we have decided not to speculate.....

So after a few failed attempts at buying one of the popular 4 bed newly built mansions in Cavan/Monaghan we came across this wee house. The previous owners had already 'done it up' ie installation/new wiring and converted attic, but it needs a little more room.

So we bought it with the plans in mind to build on an extension out the back, to add a master bedroom with ensuite, plus extending our kitchen/living area, which includes adding south facing French doors.
Then we had to look for a builder.....and one that wasnt a cowboy or in debt up to their eyeballs!. We got a few quotes and got a builder lined up.
After waiting 3/4 months they arrived on Thursday & started work:

Shed gone and so is more of the lawn, to make way for more driveway and later on a patio...
Important meeting going on!
I cant wait until all this disturbance is over.