A Very Festive Tour of Belfast

A Very Festive Tour of Belfast

Belfast is a cracker city any time of year but it really comes alive during the Christmas season. The streets are aglow with decorations, the Christmas market cabins (and the people) are crammed side by side in the City Hall gardens and the pubs are full of festive-clad punters singing “Fairytale of New York” at the top of their lungs. It’s a magical city to stroll through because every inch of the city is sprinkled with Christmas cheer – even…

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What I’m Reading This Autumn

What I’m Reading This Autumn

There’s many things that I love about Autumn; the delicious crunch of orange leaves, crisp air on a bright morning and the cosiness of a forgotten favourite jumper, rediscovered after spending months at the back of the wardrobe. All these little joys make my Autumnal heart sing but what I treasure most of all about this time of year is the prospect of new books to bury my head in to while the days turn dark and cold. I try…

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How Do You Like Them Apples??

How Do You Like Them Apples??

Ah, Autumn. I feel you nipping at my heels, pushing me towards my winter boots and scarves and coats. I see you in the rust-edged leaves and bushes heavy with blackberries. I see you in the crisp new pages of a notebook, full of anticipation and hope. Being a September babe means I am always ready to embrace Autumn and probably explains my excitement at new stationery but my all-time favourite way to ring in the season is to get…

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Camping in Tollymore Forest

Camping in Tollymore Forest

Summer in Ireland… it’s a fleeting experience, isn’t it? The warm months whisper past us before we can even remember what was to feel the comforting heat of the sun and the gentle lap of waves at our bare feet. Though the season is brief, we Irish have know to appreciate every drop of sunshine while we can, revelling in the joy of back-to-back sunny days, outdoor picnics and endless adventures. There are so many wee pleasures to have during…

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A Treehouse in Donegal

A Treehouse in Donegal

“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived” – Henry David Thoreau, Walden Pond I was 21 years old when I read this line for the first time. It was in the summer of 2010 and I was in a campsite in Northwestern Madagascar,…

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My Favourite Airbnb Experiences

My Favourite Airbnb Experiences

Remember back in the day when you had to rely on a grainy brochure photo to book your accommodation? I’ve a few horror stories from across the years from a grotty apartment in Santa Ponsa (we were 17 so no surprise there) to a shower that comprised of a hose wrapped in electrical wires in Cuba (I’m lucky to be alive after that one). Now we’re in the digital age it’s almost impossible to book a bad place with Tripadvisor…

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The Podcasts I’m Recommending To My Mates

The Podcasts I’m Recommending To My Mates

Confession: I am not good in total silence. If ever a quiet moment falls during a shared car ride I find myself frantically brainstorming conversation topics in the hope to resurrect sound again. Even in yoga I cling to the sounds around me when we’re supposed to be training our minds to be clear – I would not do well on a silent retreat at all. Podcasts have been a huge saviour for me when I’m in need of something…

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Local Favourites: Crawfordsburn

Local Favourites: Crawfordsburn

It’s been a while since I put one of these wee guides together and I had forgotten how much fun it was to show off a place a few of you maybe haven’t explored yet. For such a small island it’s amazing how many hidden secrets there are that don’t require hours in the back of a car. All you need is a free afternoon and a thirst for a bit of adventure! This guide is dedicated to the village…

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Apple & Blackberry Muffins

Apple & Blackberry Muffins

September is my January. Maybe it’s that crispness that suddenly arrives out of nowhere (crisp air, crisp leaves, crispy-clean duvet sheets after a summer without one) or maybe it’s that back-to-school-ness I still feel aged 30. Whatever it is I feel ready to start all over. Fresh new notebooks are bought by the armful and immediately filled with lists and ideas that I was too busy to write down all summer. And this renewed sense of purpose doesn’t just stop…

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Seamus Heaney’s HomePlace

Seamus Heaney’s HomePlace

To write about Seamus Heaney feels somewhat of an empty feat, he of so many words and I of so few but sure, here I am trying. In our family Seamus is spoken of like another family remember, his quips and musings repeated at gatherings like a shared memory that we never tire of hearing. ‘Digging’ is a firm favourite of ours as it is amongst most families in Ireland who identify with the audible descriptions of our ancestors who…

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