Saturday, December 31, 2011

gosford forest park

Gosford Forest Park

So while I was in N.Ireland, I of course had to get a little photography session fitted in! Just a casual one of course! Lilah would hardly stand still for 2 seconds to pose, especially not in a park like this, too many interesting things to keep her on her toes! My Mum really appreciates photography too, she definitely has got to be the influence that got me started!

So we went to the local forest park, it's about 5 or 6 miles from where I grew up - Gosford Forest Park. My Mum, my Dad, Lilah and I went along, Colin was only too happy to give this one a miss! Heh!

This is the same little forest park that we had our engagement pictures taken in, all those years ago! It is used frequently by photographers - you'll understand why when you (hopefully) see some of the beauty captured through my pictures.

Also, the Gosford Castle, which is right in this park is currently under renovations. It's being renovated into apartments, so if you ever felt the desire to live in a castle, now you know where to go!

It was such a lovely day and my Dad treated us to lunch afterwards. I adore my parents!

Friday, December 30, 2011

the north coast - carrick-a-rede rope bridge

Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge, Antrim Coast

Another 'North Coast' entry! Again, I'm slotting this post into days where I have no posts!

We had just visited: White Rocks Beach, Dunluce Castle, Giant's Causeway and finally we arrived at Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge, just as the sun was setting and the bridge was closing up for the day! To be honest, we weren't too disappointed to be missing out on this crazy bridge - it's certainly not for the faint at heart! But we did take the (long) walk down to see it again and of course, take some pictures. As you can see, the bridge was closed for the evening.

And of course, some history...

Carrick-a-rede means 'rock in the road'. It is thought salmon fishermen have been erecting bridges to the island for over 350 years. It has taken many forms over the years. In the 1970s it featured only a single handrail and large gaps between the slats. A version of the bridge, tested up to ten tonnes, was built with the help of local climbers and abseilers in 2000. A subsequent design was engineered in 2004 and offers visitors and fishermen alike a much safer passage to the island. The current wire rope and Douglas fir bridge was made by Heyn Construction in Belfast and erected early in 2008 at a cost of over £16,000.[2] Although no one has fallen off the bridge, there have been many instances where visitors, unable to face the walk back across the bridge, have had to be taken off the island by boat

You can read more here.

The Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge, Antrim Coast The Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge, Antrim Coast The Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge, Antrim Coast Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge, Antrim Coast

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

an old irish blessing

some irish mist!

An Old Irish Blessing

May the road rise up to meet you.
May the wind always be at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
and rains fall soft upon your fields.
And until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of His hand.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

the north coast - giant's causeway

The Giant's Causeway, Antrim Coast

I'm skipping back and forth here, simply because Christmas 'happened' since our trip to the North Coast! And because of that, I just have to fill in the available days! So here goes my post for the Giant's Causeway!

When in Ireland, do as the Irish! The Giant's Causeway is a huge piece of Northern Irish history. Lilah loved this piece of history, well, maybe not the history, but she loved climbing over these rocks with the wind in her face! In fact, she told us later that it was her favourite part of the whole day! What fun to show her my own childhood memories!

Here's the history of the Giant's Causeway in a nutshell...

Some 50 to 60 million years ago,during the Paleogene period, Antrim was subject to intense volcanic activity, when highly fluid molten basalt intruded through chalk beds to form an extensive lava plateau. As the lava cooled rapidly, contraction occurred. Horizontal contraction fractured in a similar way to drying mud, with the cracks propagating down as the mass cooled, leaving pillarlike structures, which are also fractured horizontally into "biscuits".

There is also a legend that goes along with the Giant's Causeway - which as a child, I always thought fascinating!

Legend has it that Irish Warrior, Finn McCool, had spent many days and nights trying to create a bridge to Scotland because he was challenged by another giant. A fellow boatsman told him that the opponent was much larger than he. Finn told his wife and she came up with an ingenious plan to dress Fionn like a baby. They spent many nights creating a costume and bed. When the opponent came to Fionn's house; Fionn's wife told him that Fionn was out woodcutting and the opponent would have to wait for him to return. Then Fionn's wife showed him her baby and when the opponent saw him he was terrified at the thought of how huge Finn would be. He ran back to Scotland and threw random stones from the causeway into the waters below.

Read more about the history and legend(s) here.

Monday, December 26, 2011

a wee spot of farming

I really love this photo of Pa, Baba & Lilah. Three generations.

Colin loves to get a little bit of farming fitted in when he goes back home to his parents farm. He loves the outdoors and the animal marts and if it hadn't been for his heart condition, he may well have been a farmer, rather than an engineer.

I always said I would never marry a farmer, so it worked out well!

Lilah loves the outdoors, she might have a bit of farming in her blood too! She didn't want to take off this rain suit, (which looks very much like a pair of farmer's overalls) and she absolutely loved (helping Baba) drive the big tractor. Although, if the truth be told she was rather disgusted with the farm smells! And after the calf sucked her fingers, she looked at her slobbery fingers in disgust and had the need to run up to the house and get them washed immediately!


"Farming looks mighty easy when your plow is a pencil,
and you're a thousand miles from the corn field."

farming farming farming

[ the flickr set is here ]

Sunday, December 25, 2011

christmas day

Christmas Day, 2011

We had a wonderful Christmas, spent with our two families.

Lilah got her two requests, a watch and an electric toothbrush. She was so thrilled and proud of her two items! In fact, I bought her a few other items and when she pulled everything out of her stocking she just took the two item that she had requested and left everything else sitting on her bed. When I asked her about the other items, she said, "Well, I just asked for a toothbrush and a watch!" Heh! Our girl is so practical. It'll teach me a lesson for next year!

One of Lilah favourite parts of Christmas was definitely the crackers. She was simply dying to crack them open and looked adorable wearing her crown!

Then (after dinner) came out the busy bees game! Oh my, it was a hoot. After the kiddies had a turn, the adults decided they'd give it a go too. It certainly made for some good laughs!

Christmas Day, 2011 Christmas Day, 2011 Christmas Day, 2011 Christmas Day, 2011


Christmas Day, 2011 Christmas Day, 2011 Christmas Day, 2011 Christmas Day, 2011 Christmas Day, 2011 Christmas Day, 2011 Christmas Day, 2011 Christmas Day, 2011 Christmas Day, 2011


Christmas Day, 2011 Christmas Day, 2011 Christmas Day, 2011 Christmas Day, 2011 Christmas Day, 2011 Christmas Day, 2011

[ the flickr set is here ]