Days Out With Kids: Fota Wildlife Park

You know those summer days where the fates all align and allow you to actually go and do something nice together as a family? We had one of those last Friday, so decided we would head to Fota Wildlife Park and make the most of the weather. At two, E is animal mad – he knows all the noises, he knows the names and was very excited about the concept of going to see all the animals. In particular, the cows. Ahem. Once we had him corrected to realise that it would be more lions and monkeys, rather than farm animals, we were set to go!

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Living Where I’m Living, a love letter to Cork City

I’ve been living in Cork for almost seven years. I moved down here in early September 2009, seventeen years old, terrified that I’d hate it, that I’d know nobody, that I’d miss my home too much. College was what drew me here, it becoming home is what has kept me. When Sadhbh from Where Wishes Come From started up a linky about loving the place you live, it inspired me to get writing!

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Lunch at Lishh – More Cork Ramblings

I love finding new places to try out for lunch in Cork City, especially places that are good value for money with varied menus to treat my tastebuds. Recently, a cafe I had tried once before in it’s old location in Turners Cross, Lishh, moved to the Dosco Business Park on the South Douglas Road, closer to my house, and I took it as a great excuse to try it out properly. Lishh is a mixture of a deli cafe, food seller and catering company – now located directly across from Cork Meat Company and The Good Fish Company, two excellent fresh food sellers – the perfect combination.

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Some Parenting Chatter : Coffee Mornings For Mums in Douglas Court Shopping Centre

Throughout my time writing this blog, I’ve tried to promote events which were on in Cork for parents (and parents to be), things that would make it easier for those of us with kids to get out of the house and meet other people who are in our shoes. I’ve written about Toddler and Parent Mornings in the Library, Cuidiu Coffee Mornings where sanity is regained over a cup of coffee, and random events in between. This time however, I’ve gotten a little bit more involved.

I was thrilled to be approached a little while ago by the organisers of this new Coffee Morning For Mums event, which is being held in a shopping centre not a million miles away from my regular stomping ground, Douglas Court Shopping Centre. From experience I know that being at home with baby/babies can be quite lonely and isolating, and it can be difficult to meet others who are in your shoes too – so when the idea of a coffee morning which will also have informative talks for Mums was mentioned, I thought it was a great idea.

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Craft-y Gift Ideas at the Glucksman Gallery

With Christmas close at hand (yes, I went there, Tesco has been blaring the music since midnight on October 31st), thoughts have started straying towards gift ideas and trying to find unique gifts that friends and family will love. I spotted the Glucksman Gallery in my alma mater UCC was holding a Craft & Design Fair last weekend and thought it would be a good idea to check it out, to see if I could spot some gift ideas from local craftsmen. I was not disappointed.

Crafty Gift Ideas from Craft & Design Fair, Glucksman UCC - Four Walls, Rainy Days

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Heading Into Nature: A Wander in BallyBrack Woods, Douglas

Wandering into Nature

Winter is definitely coming. The weather is finally starting to get cold, the evenings are getting darker and there are leaves all over the ground in gorgeous reddish/orange shades. Living in Cork, this also means getting into the mindset of dealing with even more rain, but for the moment, I am cherishing the days without, where it is cold and crisp, and I’m able to head out walking with my boy. We’ve recently moved further out of the city than I’ve ever lived before since my move down here in 2009, and so have started exploring a whole other area which I’d not really paid too much attention to before. Through a curious wander the other day, I discovered a trail that went through Ballybrack Woods, behind the playground, and resolved to go back as a three so we could enjoy a nice family wander into nature.  Read More

Coffee in Cork City: My Top 5 Coffee Spots

 

I’ve always been a big coffee person – for a lot of my college life, I was pretty sure that if I got a cut, I’d bleed pure caffeine. Becoming a parent has not helped with lessening my caffeine levels; in order to keep up with the toddler it is recommended to be running on fumes and coffee beans! Due to this necessity, I do spend quite a lot of time trying out different places to find “my” coffee place. Somewhere that can make the perfect cup to wake me up in the morning. It’s not just about the coffee though, the service can make a serious difference (much nicer to be perked up by a nice personality as well as the caffeine hit) so I’ve definitely got a few places earmarked as “favourites” in this little city that I now call home.

top 5 coffee spots in cork - four walls rainy days - ireland 2015

 

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Moving House: Not for the Faint Hearted

house moving-2

I’m sitting writing this in my new apartment, praying that my data package from my iPhone holds out (how much data could a blog post take up?) since we’ve been informed that our broadband provider won’t be sending someone around until at least next Monday. I’m surrounded by most of our belongings, some unpacked, some still in boxes – the remains in the other place which we still have the keys to until Thursday. The joys of moving house.

It’s been a long journey here, and the settling in period isn’t proving any less stressful. It’s like a pregnancy in a way, now we’re into the fourth trimester of the house move, we’ve the shiny new baby apartment, and we have to figure out the best way to do things from here. I’m about as good at house hunting stress as I am at pregnancy (i.e.: crap) so I am very, very glad it’s over and done with. I didn’t realise just how much of an issue our toddler, loud and lively as he is, would be with certain landlords. One even refused to outright say it, but did attempt (very blatantly) to talk me out of living in her house – and berated me for my lack of driving skill in the process. We didn’t get the house we intended to get, we are in apartment land again, but we’re now on the ground floor in a lovely professionally run place so I’m happy. Read More

A morning of Soft Play – Chuckies Play Centre, Cork

 

When you’re at home with a toddler, days can get pretty repetitive. Unless you set up different things to do during the week, it can feel like Groundhog Day. Every day involves chasing a football around the living room. My life soundtrack is currently the songs from Baby Genius. It’s worse when it rains – yes, I’ve still not learned to love the rain – because as I don’t drive, there is little to do in the city centre with a toddler and outside of that isn’t much of an option. There are only so many visits to the kiddie library we can do in one week, so I decided one morning that we’d change tack and head to Chuckies Play Zone, the closest soft play centre to us.

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