Full Bodied

Sometimes I still pinch myself that I made it through motherhood with everyone pretty much unscathed. I have raised my own and other people’s children, being a mother and foster mother and at times, it was the hardest job EVER, but the most rewarding, so now, it’s ‘me’ time and I am loving it!

moi… authors own
et moi…. lolling around…living it up large!

Today I’m having a fat day, a lazy day

A day where I can loll around

In my dressing gown

I love having a fat day

It is full bodied, full of self- love and indulgence

It starts with a lay in bed, reading

Eating breakfast and not minding if the crumbs fall onto the sheets

After a while I nod off for another snooze

I awake again, put on my dressing gown and head downstairs

I have a cuppa and maybe a biscuit or two

And wrap my hands around the warmth of the cup and my dressing gown

Tightly around me

I read some more of my book, curled up on the sofa and put the fire on

Cosy in my living room, soaking up the fullness of just ‘being’…

Later I will turn on the TV and flick through the channels until something

Grabs my attention.  I may watch it for an hour or two or for the rest

Of the day until it is time, to go to bed again

In between, I will head into the kitchen and eat and nibble and pick at

Whatever I choose to eat, whatever, takes my fancy

And I won’t feel one bit guilty

Why?

I won’t feel guilty because I have spent my days, working, fetching and carrying

Raising children, keeping house, putting other people first, putting myself to the back of the queue

Except for the occasional treat.

Mums, all over the world are on the marathon of motherhood and it is exhausting, exhilarating, heartfelt and heart breaking.  We fight, we fix, we do.  We just do.  We get on with it and we get lost in it.  The girl you were, that carefree girl, before motherhood, she is gone.  She is hiding in the body of the mad woman working from morning ‘til night, full of sleep deprivation, spinning plates and trying to please EVERYONE and in the process there is no time or very very little time, for her to please herself.

So now, now that my nest is empty, 33 years later, of getting lost in motherhood, I can, without guilt or remorse, please myself and have a great big fat day to myself and enjoy it wrapped up in the warmth of my dressing gown, and in the knowledge, that the job I did of being mother, was a success.  My Children are a success, they are wonderful human beings getting on in the world on their own journeys, full of their own adventures, and I couldn’t be happier for them….. or me!

Jackdaw

Creatures of habit, the birds build in any chimney, nook an cranny and return year after year., until someone or something gets in their way, it creates a loss and a gain for all involved.

gathering…. authors own

Persistent in the building, the jackdaw

Searched and found

The twigs, the moss, the leaves and tuft

All settled on the ground

He swooped and gathered and up he flew

To place them in the pot

Chirping merrily and proudly

Preparing to weave his lot

His stash, lined bricks and mortar

A home to build his nest

Only to find he’d been locked out

When off he went to rest

The cowl they placed upon the pot

His access had been denied

Not merrily chirping any more

His dreams for ‘home’ had died

No more the morning singing

Inside the house could be heard

Now only a strange quietness

Oh how they’ll miss this intelligent bird

But off he flew, quite undeterred to build

Another nest

A home, a house a habitat

Of where his chicks can rest

authors own

Resilient is this little bird, he’ll seek and he will find

a tree, or steeple, a nook or cranny

he will not be confined

for he is ever working, with tenacity and grit

he will not be deterred, he will just get on with it

and so the chirping will stay with him as he sings

his sweet sweet tune

and where the chimney has been blocked

no twittering lifts the gloom……

Rain

When the downpour comes it may change how we feel….but it doesn’t have to be bad

Photo by Matheus Oliveira on Pexels.com

I don’t like the rain. It makes me feel cold and miserable. I don’t want to go out when it is raining. I hear it lashing off the windows and it makes me shiver and shudder at the thoughts of having to go out in it.

I have to go out. I need to go to work, or to the shops or to do some other errand. I grab my rain coat, pull my hood up over my head and run to the car, holding onto my hood and keeping my head in the downward position.

Quickly, I hop into the car and start the engine. The windows are all steamed up and I turn on the fan and the heater to demist them and warm up the car. Wipers come on, by themselves, smart car! As the rain gets heavier, the wipers get quicker and I wish,more and more that I was back home, in the house, in the warm, cuddled up on the sofa, with the fire on, listening to the rain instead of being out in it, or driving in it.

When I am in the rain, I try everything to keep it from hitting me. I have a rain coat. I have an umbrella. I wear a hat and sometimes gloves. I wear my boots to keep my legs dry and free from the rain touching them.

Sometimes, I get caught out in the rain and am not ready or prepared for it and then, it falls, on my head, my body, my legs, my face and then I remember…..

I remember when I was young, a child, and I loved the rain, especially if it was really really lashing down hard and pounding off the ground. That would mean my friends and I could stay in and play and dress up, pretend to be like ‘grownups’ wearing our mother’s clothes and shoes, clippedy clopping around on the lino floor, face full of make up and a couple of oranges shoved up our tops to give us our ‘bossom’. It was hilarious. There was lots of laughter.

I also remember the feeling of the rain on my face, because sometimes I would run out into it, arms outstretched, mouth open and I would let it soak me to the skin and drink it in until I was completely drenched. Then, after dancing in the rain, I would go back into the house, shimmy the wet clothes off my squeaky wet skin and step into a nice warm bath and soak in the luxury of the bubbles, feeling like the Queen of Sheeba.

It’s funny how the rain can make us feel.

It’s funny how we view the rain.

It’s funny that we forget how much fun we can have if we learn to dance in the rain…..

Signs

Sometimes we have just got to trust in the signs and take them for what they are…. believe in the magic……

So many signs in our daily lives, we can either ignore them , act on them or have faith in them….

It’s a matter of choice or a matter of chance….

Photo by David Atkins on Pexels.com

They say that the Robin, little red breasted bird is a symbol of good luck, happiness and rebirth. They also say it’s a sign that a loved one is near and so it can bring lots of comfort to those grieving.

The same can be said for feathers. They are a sign that the angels are near, looking out for you and that loved ones, who have passed over are near.

We get comfort from these sightings and read them how we will and they may instill a level of calm within us and though we will forever miss our loved ones, it brings pleasure to think about them being so close.

I know I feel comfort and calm seeing such things and I openly talk to my friend who passed, too young and too soon from this mortal life. I chat to her as if she is there.

Today is quite a significant day, being her 6 month anniversary. My husband and I went for a nice lovely stroll nearby where we live and walked down to the lake. Just before we got there a feather appeared, floating down from the sky and fell at my feet.

As soon as I saw it, I said to my husband,’here she is, letting me know she is here, coming on the walk with us’.

We used to have such a laugh. We had known each other since our school days and were a pair of gigglers.

As we continued on the walk we went right down to the edge of the lake and my husband decided to skim stones on it as it was so still and perfect for skimming stones. The ripple affect was just lovely.

ripple effect – authors own image
Calm still waters – Authors own image

As I was busy taking photos, and openly talking to my friend saying how beautiful it was here, down at the edge of the lake, I heard a yelp! I looked back and as if in slow motion I saw my poor husband slip on a rock and go down, into the water.

He was literally in the water for about 2 seconds, a quick dunk, as it were before getting himself out.

I just stood there in disbelief and as he quickly scrambled out of the water and walked towards me, and I knew that he was OK, I burst out laughing. It was actually hilarious. I laughed so much I almost wet myself, and as if by magic, the mood was a whole lot lighter.

My husband also laughed, pleased that no real damage was done, and as we walked (he squelshed) back towards home we both agreed that it was probably Jackie, giving him a little nudge in, as she would find it so funny and she knows how much I would laugh too.

I took it as a real sign that indeed, she was there, by my side letting me know that she was there and that she was OK.

Emerging from the lake….

Thank you my dear, for the sign, the company and the laugh…. He is truly fine…

Stairway to Heaven

When you fancy a piece of heaven, take my advice and go do the Cuilcagh Mountain walk, A.K.A the Stairway to heaven. It is spectacular….

Cuilcagh Mountain Boardwalk

It’s commonly referred to as the stairway to heaven and it is on the border of County Cavan and County Fermanagh. It is about an hours drive from where I live in South Leitrim, and the day we went, at the end of February was a day of four seasons… We had it all, sun, rain and snow.

We packed our back pack, had water, a snack and some waterproof trousers, ‘just in case’ it rained. As we left Mohill, the sun was shining, but alot can happen in an hour. Alot can happen in a few minutes!

After we parked the car at the entrance to the walk, we were greeted by a man collecting the parking fee either 5 pound sterling or 6 euro. The sun was shining and there were a good few cars in the car park. We had only been walking about 5 minutes when the heavens opened, so on went the waterproofs, to keep us dry.

It is quite a bit of a walk before you even get to the board walk, with lovely craggy trees and a number of sheep to keep you amused along the way. The scenery was great.

We passed a little river to the right and some frogs to the left. They were protecting and moving about their spawn.

The path was gravel and easy under foot, the incline was gradual. The space was open and dramatic and along the way, we would stop, so many times to take in the magesticness of it. Of course, it was great to catch our breath from walking, only for our breath to be taken away by the sheer beauty of the landscape rolling out before us and behind us. It really is quite awesome!

We met people as they were on their way back down, and all said the same thing ‘keep going, it is worth it’.

After about an hour of walking, I began to wonder if indeed, it was would be worth it or indeed, if we would be able to keep going.

We did keep going and over and over again, we would say WOW, look at that, pointing in each direction. No matter where you looked, it was stunning.

The board walk itself, when you finally get to it, is good and sturdy and as it rolls out in front of you, leading you the way to the actual stairs, it highlights all the beauty it is creeping through.

I am not going to lie, climbing up the actual stairs, to the top, was hard and we stopped many times to slow down the heart rate and just take in the sheer magnitude of it all.

As we were walking up the stairs we noticed the dark clouds coming, and as we got to the very top, in came the snow and hail and poured down on us like a welcomed shower as we were sweating from the steep incline. We both felt our hearts were going to burst!

It was spectacular from the top. The view needs to be seen with your own eyes to appreciate it, so my advice is go, go do the stairway to heaven, keep going, it will be worth it!

Memories, New and Old

a little stroll does the heart good in more ways than one….. making and remembering memories

Drumleague lock, Co Leitrim
Drumleague Lock, Co Leitrim

Today we decided to do the canal walk beginning in Drumshanbo at Acres Lake, walking down to Battlebridge Lock and back again to where we started.

I had walked a piece of this walk a few years ago whilst visiting Leitrim, but I remember it was raining that day.

Today, the weather was fine, dry and sunny and we met a few other people along the way, getting their steps in and enjoying the stroll.

It is a nice flat walk and not too taxing at all. Along the walk we pass through Drumleague Lock, and the sight of it brought me right back to October 1979, when I was still a girl, living in the UK.

I was on a barge trip with the school for our school tour over the course of a week, from Coventry Canal basin to Birmingham. I remember it being such great fun and my best friend, Jackie, and I had aches in our tummy from laughing. We would hop on and off of the barge at times, as it was moving and run to the Lock to open it.

One evening Jackie was washing her hair over the the side of the barge and I went to fetch clean hot water from the stove to rinse it. I also picked up another empty saucepan and unbeknown to I leaned over the side, filled it with icy cold canal water and proceeded to pour it over her head…….Well, the screams and effing and blinding were enough to wake the dead, as she ran holding her poor cold head running the length of the barge, while I was bend over double laughing and pleading with her that I was sorry and had some lovely warm fresh water to clean her hair with.

Of course she forgave me and we often used to laugh about it. Those were the days…..

Today was about making new memories with my hubby, but I love it when the ordinary things in everyday can transport us back to another time and we can relive that again and talk about it, and smile at the thoughts of it. It brings everything alive and gives a warm heartfelt feeling.

Continuing on from the lock, a bit further down the pathway was a lovely house nestled into the landscape making great use with their big windows out across the canal. To our surprise part of the walkway is also used by cars, not many, thankfully as it would be a very tight squeeze if there was two way traffic with either the car or the walkers ending up in the canal!

We came to the road at Battlebridge Lock and to the right of it was the river Shannon running fast under the bridge. Beside the bridge, a lovely quaint but welcoming pub, called Beirnes of Battlebridge sits to the right. We called in here and had a bowl of delicious homemade soup served with guinness bread and rested a little after the 8km walk, before heading back.

River Shannon to the right of the canal
Home made soup @ of Battlebridge

We finally made our way back around the loop and and now with the canal to the right of us the expanse of open fields to the left giving rise to a beautiful mountain straight ahead.

We talked and chatted and took a leisurely walk back to Acres Lake, where we started and were planning where we should go next on our discovery of this area.

The sounds of the birds singing on this journey was a joy to hear. We saw blackbirds, finches, a little wren and the beautiful Robin. The Robin always makes me smile and I am always pleased to see it, because it lets me know that my beautiful friend, Jackie, is there with me on the walk and on this journey of discovery.

the singing robin….

We saw lots of frogs spawn in the little pools branching off along the sides of the walkway, but alas, my hubby was disappointed to not see any other wildlife or frogs taking care of their spawn….. Perhaps they were hiding away from our chitter chatter.

All in all, I would recommend this walk to everyone, young and old. It is even great for cycling or for children if they have a scooter. It is a bit gravelly, a little muddy in places, but good under foot and nice and flat.

Acres lake

Women March

Remember the fight our ancestors fought for their rights, as women, for us so we could continue the good fight. To all the women today, be strong…

Photo by Efrem Efre on Pexels.com

Women March….

Lay down the night to rest

Upon the morning sun

Kiss thy wounded soldier

With sword and battle done

Run the river of trout up stream

And swim against the tide

Let mans endeavour for justice

Stand tall with sense of pride

Shed no more tears for hatred

Nor feel so ill disposed

The rising mist will lift to clear

A new landscape will be composed

And women march and battle on

Some broken on their knees

But still they fight like gentle giants

Their resolve won’t be appeased

They find, they fix, they nurture life

And pass it down the line

They sacrifice whatever it takes

They seek and they will find

And man may take our freedom

And even take our land

But what he fails to notice

Is what he doesn’t understand

That through the human spirit

The threads from another time

No matter what the terror

He can never take our minds.

And up we rise again and again

Our spirit never falters

It makes us strong, to carry on

Paused but never halted

The women through the ages

Have fought through hurt and pain

Now we rise and stand up

for the women of Ukraine

All women the world over

We have a special task

To raise our sons and daughters

To seek peace, and love that lasts

To banish control and hatred

Derived from power and greed

And so we continue to nurture

And plant that mighty seed….

Just stop….

How easy it is to bring the house down

Bystanders watching, the carnage, profound.

Shifting the blame and pointing the finger

Hide behind lies while the terror still lingers

People displaced, lives torn apart

Not knowing, just how, they can make a new start

Loved ones are missing, some trapped behind

Explosions, confusion, distorted war crimes

Children are dying and running for cover

Is this how humatity should treat one another?

I wish they’d just stop with this senseless regime

Stop with the bombs, the bullets, the screams…

Spiders

Hello God


I just want to say thank you for my family, my home, my best friend, who is soft and cuddly and comes everywhere with me, and for my pets
I am happy and lucky and blessed.
Thank you that my country doesn’t have bombs and rockets and guns and people running scared and afraid that they will be killed.
Im so afraid of spiders so I’m thankful i dont have to worry about bombs.
But God, can i ask you for something, could i ask that you make the fighters stop being so angry and greedy and frightening so the children don’t have to be scared and afraid and that they can just go home, with their family and maybe, just be afraid of spiders instead?
Thank you God….

http://war, http://fighting, http://spiders