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Sometimes the sun does shine in Ireland. And sometimes it shines so bright that it even warms up enough to get out the water hose and go crazy. Despite waking up with a migraine-like headache and scratchy throat yesterday, I manager to recover by 3 and got a chance to enjoy the sun with the kids…

For the record, Reagan has grown 7 inches since we moved in March, 2011. I think Caitlin has grown 4 inches, 1 of them in the past two months. My two and four year old look like they are 3 and 6!

Sunshining again today, let’s see if it reaches 70 again…

~L

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Yesterday we braved scenic winding narrow roads to find our way to Blarney Castle. I am still wholly convinced the GPS was playing games with us as it brought us home completely different route, but that may be a tale for another day.

I really was not sure how the girls would perceive the castle: bored, too young, uninterested, etc. Little did I know that Caitlin would be over the moon and Reagan happy to follow along.

Anytime there is a map involved we are sure to win. The ‘Dora the Explorer’ instinct took over and Caitlin was off to find castle, fairies, flowers, and anything else you could imagine. Mostly castles and princesses, though.

The girls braved the stairs and up we went into the castle to see the various rooms and Blarney Stone. Jack kissed the stone, I did not. I blame the germs, not my fear of heights πŸ˜‰

After the trip up to the top we worked our way back down and to a cafe for a little ice cream and tea. We were to head to the manor house next, but the picture perfect day was quickly change as dark gray clouds rolled in and opened upon us. That said, Caitlin loved running with me from tree bank to tree bank for coverage. It was quite the game we were playing.

We’ll definitely go back again, so much more of the grounds to see. A few pictures here, so many more working their way onto Flickr.

It’s just hard to find time with two kids underfoot, a full-time job and hobbies I enjoy that don’t include updating blogs πŸ™‚ I know, silly me. I keep telling myself I will get better at keeping every one up to date.

We’ve been in Ireland almost 5 months now. Just 9 days shy of. Reagan has grown 3 inches, or is it more, and Caitlin has grown at least one. They’re bursting through their shoes and I recently spent way too many Euros on new trainers. If there is anything that is expensive here it is clothing of all varieties. That and eating out. There is not such thing as a family dinner out that is less than 45 Euros.

The girls started crèche (day care) 3 weeks ago. The first week was just 90 minutes each day as an adjustment period. Reagan seems to be settling in quickly. Caitlin would probably enjoy it more were she in the Montessori room, which she will be in September. As two of the neighbor boys are in that room I think it will feel more familiar. That and she is just too big for the room she is in. Alas, potty training must be done first.

With that, I’ve spent this bank holiday weekend doing a three-day potty training session with Caitlin. I was forwarded an e-book by a neighbor and we are seeing great success. And I didn’t just go for daytime training, we went for it and her throw out the pull-ups and pull on the big girl underwear. Yesterday was tough as we had a birthday party to attend and she couldn’t be bothered to tell me she needed to use the toilet, however today we’ve not had a single miss. I am so proud of my little Caitlin Bug. She has gone from ‘no way in hell will I sit on that potty, mommy’ to ‘Mommy! Potty now!’ Let the savings on diapers begin. We’re going to attempt to train Reagan in January or February. Granted our laundry bill may be going up a bit, but the savings on nappies should be phenomenal.

We’ve had several neighborhood BBQs and they have been great fun. Our neighbors are truly the best. While I’ve had work to somewhat help me adjust, our neighbors have been a saving grace for Jack and the kids. I think we when head home we’ll truly be sad and have made some lifelong friends.

BBQ with the neighbors

As for Ireland itself, we’ve not been out to see much yet. I had grand plans a few weeks ago, but then I was sick for a few days and Jack was sick for a few days and then we reached Friday of my week off and had done nothing. Sooooo, we went to Blackrock castle, sent a message into outer space, too a few pictures and that was it. Great reflection of Ireland thought… over cast and medieval looking πŸ™‚

Blackrock Castle

Grandma Pat will come visit in September and we’ll see some more then. Or at least they will. I’ll be busy working my little heart out. Speaking of work, definitely been a successful transition there as well and I am super proud of myself. I won’t bore anyone with details, but we finished our transition and successfully closed out our first quarter. I suspect the second will close out very well as well.

We head home in November from the 16th – 29th. We’re very excited to meet ‘cousin itt’ and hope he has made his appearance by the time we are home. All grandparents will also be in Ohio at the same time, so the kids should be spoiled, spoiled, spoiled πŸ™‚

And as I type Reagan is breaking into my office. Time to head off to play again. Will catch up again soon and hopefully more frequently. If you’re still reading, thank you πŸ™‚

Much love from the Emerald Isle!

~L