Seasons change and so do we!

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When we stand back to look at ourselves, our lives and the path we have carved it is quite easy to become complacent. Everyone is different, we all have special talents and different ways to look at things. Even the way we live, as similar human beings is completely different.

One big thing, I have learned and helps me to refocus and embrace change is that the seasons change and so do we! Our lives our outlook, the direction we take our lives is constantly evolving. Nothing stays the same. This for me is a great thing, and a wonderful way to take things in our stride and keep moving onwards and upwards.

There is always room for growth and change, just as it is in nature is truly a positive experience. All we have to do is look for the positive and get the help or assistance needed to make a change if it is needed. Growth is the best thing to come from change.

Bawk Bawk – CHICKENS!!

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I could not leave this monumental event in my life pass me by without a blog post. Proudly introducing Augusta, Demellza (I’m partial to Poledark), Molly and Polly. They are fabulous hybrids and settling in so well. Sending lots of thanks to the fab family who run FarmFowl in Wicklow, Ireland. We had a lovely experience buying the very lovely chicken coop and the hen’s from you all and your help was greatly appreciated.

For years and years I have been wishing and hoping for chickens, I grew up with hens and they evoke such lovely memories, and those delicious eggs! My husband needed a LOT of convincing, and he has come around at last. I appreciate that everyone in the household needs to be on the same page, as it is a team effort. The chickens are POL’s or point of lay. They will start to lay over the next week or so. Each chicken will lay one lovely egg per day and will continue to do so for up to 4 years! We are an egg loving family and it makes sense to have organic, free range eggs on demand.

My mini chicken farmer has taken to the job really well! It is so great to see a 5 year old full of self discipline and confidence that she can do the jobs needed to keep the chickens in tip top shape. I can’t wait to see the look on Eabha’s face when the eggs arrive!

So I am learning about chicken care and I love it. I have found some great tips and would welcome any advice from any other chicken keepers out there. Any questions please ask and I will gladly share anything I know!

Interesting fact: Did you know chickens are related to the T-Rex!! Read more here.

Loom Bands and the Environment :(

So I get that we all have to have fun. I get that kids and parents too like to have all the latest toys that are all the rage. But, what I don’t get is why nobody seems to care about the environmental impacts all these rubber bands are having and going to have on our planet. Shouldn’t we as parents be teaching a different message to our children?

Don’t get me wrong I am not blaming parents or not against having fun. I blame the people who come up with hair brained ideas that put more strain on the environment and use non renewable materials. I remember as a child using the leftovers of telephone wires to make friendship bracelets or wool, now we are leaning more and more towards rubber and plastics that do so much damage to the environment, animals and yes ourselves.

Take these points for example

  • Since the rise of the Loom Band this summer the demand has caused for new rubber plantations to be developed in East Asia. I think the people of East Asia and the world can do without more toxic rubber plantations. Causing loss of habitat for already endangered species, polluting rivers and water sources and creating more hazardous working conditions for people.
  • Children are waring loom bands too tight on limbs – needless to say what the problem is here!
  • Small pets and wild animals are ingesting the looms causing internal blockages etc etc.
  • The looms and all the itty bitty extras ARE NOT RECYCLABLE – in this era can’t we get manufactures to produce toys that are at least recyclable. So the 3million Looms sold worldwide will end up BEING INGESTED by our planet!!
  • What impact would ingesting these bands have on a child’s body? I guarantee babies and toddlers are eating these from floors all around the world.

I do love the excitement and enthusiasm these bands have created for an age group of children both male and female to the art of weaving. Weaving is essentially what it is. I could never see a 7/8year old boy starting to crochet a bracelet or even wear it. Wouldn’t it be amazing to teach children a craft form like knitting or crocheting using a renewable material, a skill for life?

I think we find ourselves in the crazy world of impressionism and consumerism. If we could only have a think about what we are being forced to buy, the impact it has on our planet and on our children. Some schools have banned them as poorer children feel totally alienated and vulnerable. I do have a loom band and ironically it is green, as green is my favourite colour. The irony lies in the fact that the loom band is so far removed from being eco friendly and all the things associated with being green!!

Becoming Minimalist.

A few months ago, I came across a website called Becoming Minimalist and I just had to share it with you all. I instantly fell in love and started practicing – slowly I might add. Possession are funny things they have a great hold over our lives in ways we could never realise – until you try to part with them! I am clearing out my clothes, shoes, toiletries and all the stuff that gets put into boxes to never see the light of day again. I have a plan on doing a car boot sale to flog the lot and not only have a great fun day out, but raise a little donation for one of my favourite charity organisations.

Not only does minimalism promote positivity, increased finances, good health and all other great things. It also hits all the boxes for being more eco/green conscious – you simply consume less stuff!!

So do yourself a big favour and sit back and read why clearing your clutter and owning less stuff can do wonders for your life. I already am finding simply by letting go you create so many more opportunities for yourself and your family.

Family Holiday’s – are they commercially too pressurized?

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I often wonder, how much under the commercial pressure pot are we all? Do we all know that purchasing stuff is the back bone to the economy? That manufacturing this stuff causes massive environmental destruction, and more money is spent to boost marketing and package this stuff than is to manufacture it. This is to get us all to feel the need to buy this stuff. OMG what a horrendous cycle!

The reason I am taking about this is I recently went on a family holiday to Spain during the Easter break and I found myself drawn to purchasing new clothing and things before the holiday and during the holiday. Funny I should want to purchase new things when I don’t need anything and the stress getting organised before a vacation is horrendous – well in my opinion it is! A vacation is all about relaxing in the sun or just relaxing, wearing less clothing than ever before, catching up on a good book, and eating the local food. I brought a capsule wardrobe that fitted into a 10 kg suitcase and wore 60% of the items. Predominantly I wore swim ware, shorts, T’s and flip flips and at night it was so easy to get ready with such an uncluttered array of clothing options in my wardrobe. There is something to be said for a capsule wardrobe and living a clutter free life – did you ever hear of my Less Is More Challenge it really gets you thinking of little ways to life a greener less pressurized life – check it out!

When you have children the need to purchase items becomes increasingly pressurized – and companies know this and guess what, they play on this weak point to their advantage. My daughter Eabha (above) is 4, she loves girly things and Disney! We all know when looking back on a childhood it is the time spent not the things played with that sticks out in your mind. Now, I know every now and again there are items that we have fond memories of, but the throw away plastic society we are now bringing our children up in is dangerous and will have disastrous results.

Also one other observation is the amount of waste at the security check points. Plastic bottles and all of the other items not meeting the 50 ml restriction, I need to investigate and ensure that all of this waste is recycled as in some airports it looked a little uncertain as to the final destination of the products!?

All in all, I have learned to relax leading UP TO the holiday, DURING the holiday and stay away from airport extortion, buy your books and food items before you leave. Choose holiday clothing wisely – always remember comfort is key for holidays you want to relax, not deal with blisters and uncomfortable clothing!

Live Below the Line 2014 – Day 1

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So day 1 Friday March 28th, is done and even though I had to go on a road trip from Wicklow to Cork it was actually OK – nobody was injured or eaten!

Unfortunately my Internet connection is down so I can’t do a proper post until tomorrow morning, but I can let you all know that one tea bag does indeed service 3 cups of tea!!

Food wise I ate porridge and soup but I will say I ate over budget at dinner time – I had a family engagement and to save myself the embarrassment of losing the plot due to lack of food, I did have a very small piece of chicken with my plain rice! But in all honesty it was a piece of chicken thigh which when I do the math probably was OK. What I am going to do just to make myself feel better is add an extra day onto my 5 day Live Below The Line 2014.

There is a link to my Concern page herehere
Where all funds will be greatly appreciated as I am taking charge of all cash raised and buying animals for some needy families. Thank you to those who donated so far – you know who you are and I am very grateful to you…!

A Less Is More Christmas.

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Last year I set up The Less Is More Challenge to celebrate Earth Day. The challenge contained 10 simple suggestions to help people realise that really really simple changes to make all the difference to the Earth on which we live. It was a great success and will be even better and bigger for 2014. I have a dedicated blog to The Less Is More Challenge and would love you to take a look and even follow. Recently, I wrote a piece called A Less Is More Christmas –  a view of Christmas in two ways, both through my eyes. A polished marketed Christmas Vs my Less Is More Christmas. It is funny when you sit back and read. And I can guarantee that you will appreciate both of my views!!

You can read it here.

I wish you all a very Merry Christmas xx

The beautiful Winter Woodland scene is painted by Jessica Jenney