Tiny Sparks of Joy

It’s Brexit day, so knowing that we live in a country that knows how to hold referendums and is pro-EU is how I’m choosing to look on the bright side.

Photo books, political leaflets, ‘cheque enclosed’ – the post box on the side of our house sparked a lot of joy this week.

Getting to the gym, doing a tough class, feeling great afterwards and planning to go as much as possible.

A daughter who is so sure of herself and knows exactly what she wants to wear, regardless of what anyone says.

Catching up with friends and work colleagues, something a more regular set of working hours allows me to do. I could get used to it, but I’m trying not to.

Tiny Sparks of Joy

A Good Weekend


I got to catch up with friends over the weekend, one of whom I hadn’t seen in a very long time. We met in Roberta’s, a new place for me in a part of town I haven’t been in for ages. I happened to pass the Project Arts Centre. It was amazing to think that just over a year ago the repeal mural was painted over. I still pinch myself a bit at the surrealness of it all. Roberta’s was lovely, good food and a great atmosphere. We weren’t rushed at all and had loads of time to catch up. I’ll definitely be back.

A Good Weekend

Tiny Sparks of Joy

img_20190307_153850A few weeks ago the radio I have had for ten years, through several house moves, finally met its end in the form of the tiled kitchen floor which sparks no joy whatsoever and which I cannot wait to see the back of in a few weeks. This replacement sparks a lot of joy. It’s not fancy and I chose it mainly because it had no bells and whistles and looked nice. The sound is lovely and it’s much easier to tune than the old one, which I thanked and sent off to be recycled.

img_20190330_144450This soap, which was a gift from a friend many months ago and which I finally got around to using this week. It’s a gorgeous scent and I love the thought that went into her buying me something like this.

img_20190320_151950This set of numbers marks progress for me. It’s probably not particularly notable for most gym goers but I’m finally learning to appreciate what my body can do.

img_20190329_181147I adore this picture, which was a surprise for me as I had no idea she was taking it. A reminder of the importance of others’ perspectives.

img_20190405_112742I first read this book when I was in primary school and for years I’ve been meaning to track down a copy. Thanks to my niche Facebook group for people who love reading childhood favourites no matter what age they are, this arrived and has been devoured.

Tiny Sparks of Joy

Tiny Sparks of Joy

img_20190319_121430-1This view. A place in Dublin I rarely walk around. I forgot how nice a riverside stroll can be.

The aforementioned stroll led to a long overdue lunch with friends and plans for more catchups.

Looking forward to another referendum. We do love a good referendum. Thanks, Irish Constitution.

Finally being in the headspace to be able to listen to analysis of the referendum on the eighth amendment. Still brings all the emotions to the surface. Still can’t quite believe its normal to see advertisements for abortion services at bus stops and in the local health clinic.

Feeling stronger after every gym session.

Tiny Sparks of Joy

Tiny Sparks of Joy

Discovering the Mueller She Wrote podcast and having an equally obsessed friend to pass the good news on to.

Throwing some money at something and it being worth every penny. At nine months pregnant I will pay for some of my problems to go away.

Small bursts of energy in between much longer periods of achy exhaustion.

Friends having good news after a very long time.

A mainly decluttered home which means order can be restored to the whole house in less than an hour after a busy Saturday.

Tiny Sparks of Joy

My Happiness Depends On Me

One of my very favourite singers is Dolly Parton and one of my very favourite songs of hers is Jolene and one of my very favourite performance of it was when she sang at Glastonbury in 2014. I watched her performance on BBC4, which broadcast the show live, and my husband, who had been a little ambivalent about her before then saw why I’ve been such a fan.

I think it’s one of the saddest songs ever written, and, in a twisted way, one of the most beautiful songs about love for a man I’ve ever heard. Dolly is begging Jolene not to take her man just because she can, and pleads with her that her happiness depends on Jolene’s decision.

I won’t go into the rights and wrongs of leaving one’s happiness in the hands of a decision another woman takes regarding your man, but suffice to say it’s probably not the healthiest message to send to anyone. My happiness depends on me, and whatever I decide to do.

Changing my mindset from expecting those around me to make me happy to realising my own actions and thoughts were what would make me happy – a feeling of being in control instead of hoping other people would deliver happiness to me – has brought me great peace of mind.

I often wonder about Jolene’s happiness. I hope she turned out ok in the end.

My Happiness Depends On Me

I Wish You a Hopeful Christmas

One of my very favourite Christmas songs is on rotation on Christmas FM every year. I adore the lyrics and music of Greg Lake’s I Believe in Father Christmas. It has become more like a poem to me, as it sums up a lot of how I feel about the festive season, in terms of my memories of it as a child, how I experience it now and how I think future years might pan out.

It has been hard to be hopeful this year, for many reasons. This Christmas, I’m hopeful that:

  • Modern medicine can deliver in myriad ways.
  • Mueller’s investigation continues apace.
  • Our plans for the short and medium term come to fruition.
  • I get to meet everyone I haven’t seen since last Christmas as friends come ‘home’ for the season.
  • Next year will show some changes in the political system, at home and abroad.
I Wish You a Hopeful Christmas

Tiny Sparks of (Christmas) Joy

A day of loveliness on Saturday, two great meals with family and friends and a lot of catching up and making new memories.

Making gingerbread and eating it while watching the Snowman.

A nap on Sunday. I needed it; I’ve been running on about six hours’ worth of sleep a night.

Having almost all of what’s not a lot of Christmas shopping done.

Planning our time for Christmas day. Spending time with our families no matter what happens is always the most important thing.

Tiny Sparks of (Christmas) Joy

Tiny Sparks of Joy

Pulling out the slow cooker for the first time in months, which meant coming home to dinner even though I was out all afternoon.

An unexpected extra 45 minutes before I had to leave the house today.

The red bricks on the front of our house in the September sunshine.

New to me Chalet School books arriving in the post.

Two gym sessions down this week, and another planned for Friday.

Catching up with two friends I don’t get to see half as much as I’d like.

Tiny Sparks of Joy