Wednesday, 29 June 2011

Ireland, Day 2

We woke up and went down for breakfast. It was yummy--eggs, sausages, fruit, cereal, croissants, and more.  After getting our fill, we checked out of the hotel and headed to Fota Wildlife Park.  It was fun, but mostly just a zoo. We thought it was going to be a little more than that, and I guess it was, but not much more. Some of the animals roam through the park, so that is what makes it a bit more interesting. We came really close to the ring-tailed lemurs and these little deer.  The monkeys/gibbons are always a favorite.  We ran out of steam early, though.  We decided rather than to take them somewhere else they wouldn't want to go, we took them to the movies.  On some degrees this was lame, to be in Ireland and go watch a movie, but we still had a late flight to get through and we were already tired. We all had some good laughs at Kung Fu Panda 2 anyway.  My favorite part was when Po asks, "Who am I?" Goofy, our Goofy, answered very loudly, "You're Kung Fu Panda!"  So after the movie, we just went to the airport to return the car, get to our gate, and we stopped and picked up a few more souvenirs at the shops there.  When we finally made it to our house, it was 2:15 AM.  Some seriously long days.  So when people ask us how our trip was I say, "Long, but short."  I guess I should say, "Exhausting to pack everything into two short days" instead.   But it was nice to finally get to Ireland. And it was a fun trip, even if we were crazy to try to have those super long days.  The kids did great though.  All the kids slept on the plane back to England, and Goofy stayed asleep pretty much the whole time through customs and parking, etc.  So of course he was up at 6 AM the next morning.  So much for catching up on sleep!

Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Ireland, Day 1

We woke up at 3 AM to get to the airport this morning.  We flew from London Stansted, so it was only an hour away.  We parked in long term parking, as that was the cheapest.  Security wasn't a problem, we just had to get our boarding passes stamped because we have non-EU passports.  Boo--but we made it through quickly and got to the gate right as they opened it. This is important when flying RyanAir because they don't assign seats. When we flew Easy Jet last year, it was a race to get seats. We had people pushing apart our family and running to the plane.  It was crazy. This time, we were in line early and the people were much more relaxed about it.  We just wanted to sit together and we did.  No problems.  It was a short flight to Cork. It's right on the edge of the island, so basically as soon as we saw land, it was time to land.  We rented a car from Hertz and were on our way.
First we headed to Blarney Castle. It was a beautiful place. We were quite tired though and a bit hungry as all we had eaten were PB&J's and granola bars.  But we went to the top and Bucko, Tink, PC, and DD all kissed the Blarney stone. So we should now be endowed with the gift of gab. You see, Cormac McCarthy was "asked" by Queen Elizabeth I to bequeath the castle to the throne, but he was always able to sidetrack them with banquets or whatnot. When Queen Elizabeth would receive reports back, she said it was all "blarney." 

After leaving the castle, we stopped for some sandwiches and headed to Garryvoe beach.  It was pretty. Goofy took a nice long nap, which was helpful.  It was fun to people watch and listen to them talk.  There were quite a few redheads around. PC commented on all the Adidas paraphernalia and other track suits.  Everyone in Europe wears them.  It is true. 
After the beach, we headed to our hotel for some relaxation. We stayed at the Radisson Blu Hotel and Spa. It was very nice.  The indoor pool was very nice.  The kids loved it and would have stayed there the whole time.  They had lots of different relaxation spots around the pool to sit with the bubbles or lay down. 
There was a Pizza Hut across the street, so we went there for dinner.  Then we sacked out and watched "Bolt" on the telly.

Thursday, 16 June 2011

Minnie Rides a Two-Wheeler

Minnie has been insisting that we remove her training wheels for a few months now. I kept telling her to wait until PC came home and he could help her.  Saturday after the race, she was insistent and I finally gave in. I was thinking she would try and get frustrated and then ask to put them back on.  I forgot how determined she is.  She did pretty well the first day and on Monday afternoon she was out trying by herself. She would get started by the sidewalk which helped her push off. She came running inside to tell me she could ride it. I couldn't believe it!! She did awesome!  Now she's a pro and I'm so proud of her.  I'm so grateful we've lived here where the kids are able to ride around in relative safety. 

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

Field Day

School is almost out. Their last day is Thursday.  Today we went and helped out with Field Day.  It was sunny and warm, which was gorgeous, but of course no one was used to all that sun and we were all tired by the end.  We helped out with soccer slalom.  Tink and Bucko said they had a good time.

Saturday, 11 June 2011

Tortoise and Hare 5-K

Today we did the Tortoise and Hare race.  We participated last year as well, but I was nursing an overworked knee, so Bucko and I walked it. We were the Tortoises.  This year we were all Hares.  PC ran with Goofy and Minnie in the double jogging stroller, and Tink rode her bike with them.  Bucko rode his bike and stayed with me.  PC and his group finished in 22 minutes and 30 seconds.  Very good! They placed 2nd in the family division.  Bucko and I finished around 30 minutes, which was fine by me.  It was fun. We had several friends who also were there and that made it all the more fun.  They had a raffle afterwards and we all ended up with t-shirts and the kids received dolls, balls, and noisemakers.  Afterwards we stopped at the pizza place for lunch. Yum. I'm really going to miss their yummy alfredo pizza.