Our story so far….June 2019…Hello!

Our story at the moment is that we moved from a terraced house in Derbyshire, England to a dormer style cottage in Southern Leitrim in the Republic of Ireland at the beginning of December 2018. The cottage is in a rural area and we have approximately 3 acres to play with as well as the cottage. We are in the process of doing the cottage up and although stressful at times, it is going well so far! You’ll have to read back over old posts for the details if you are interested. It’s changed a lot so far! It’s now dry for a start….

This is where we now live – a little bit different to a terraced house..

‘We’ consists of myself (Cathy), my husband Chris, and two of our children who are almost 2 and 4 (at the moment obviously). We have two other grown up children as well who are still in the UK.

We are Jesus followers who try to listen to Him and follow Him constantly. We feel that He did bring us here, but I get that a lot of people will think that’s not a real thing..(it is).

I do talk about God quite a bit and what we think He is doing in our lives and I will try and persuade you to seek Him for yourself and ask Him if He is there. The reason I do this is because as far as I’m concerned he is the cure for us all. He is who we all need and it would be very selfish of me to not to try and tell you about Him. Also, our lives are completely entwined with Him and it would be impossible to do a blog without talking about Him to be honest.

Jesus saved my life, He saved my husband’s life, He saved a lot of my friend’s lives and He can save your life…give Him a try.

I do also have a sense of humour and it is quite interesting stuff 😀

Mowing the runway.

Welcome, please read, enjoy, ask questions or whatever, I love doing this blog and I do try to be very honest and open. There were various aims of doing it, to give a realistic view of relocating to a different place/country, specifically a small holding, to tell people about Jesus, to give me an outlet (I love writing) and to keep friends and family updated. I’m hoping some people may also just find it plain old interesting!

Toodle pip…

Gone to the birds..

Hello one and all! Well, to jump straight in, we only have two ducks left, two females, all the rest have been eaten (we think) by the fox, it’s happened bit by bit over the last few months. So I’ve had a shuffle round today, A – because I didn’t want the last two to be eaten and B – because of the bird flu. So the quails have gone into the old chicken coop within the larger chicken shed, there’s now wire across the front of the chicken shed too, which will hopefully keep the chickens enclosed. I think I’ve said before, poultry is supposed to be under cover at the moment, and apparently bird flu is rife in Northern Ireland and we’re quite near there so I thought I’d better do something. It’s going to be harder work cleaning them out, but that’s preferable to having to slaughter them all and the ground needs a rest too, it’s a bog.

J’s been really helpful with it all this afternoon, helping me catch the ducks and carry the bath and feeder down, littlest gets fed up quickly and wants to go in, but he had to wait on this particular occasion.

I processed one more turkey yesterday and that’s in the fridge for a few days and then it will go into the freezer, we now have two turkeys left, we had three yesterday, but one got out and again, a fox got it, there’s feathers all over the field. It was J’s favourite (he wanted to keep it), so at least I didn’t have to actually kill it, but it was still unfortunate. So, two left. I think trying growing our own this year has been good and an experience, but I very much doubt I’m going to do it next year. I think we’ve got enough on with the other birds and everything else. Also, I like turkeys, they’re nice, friendly birds and slaughtering them is hard both because of that and because they’re huge! If I change my mind next year, you have permission to remind me of what I just said. I can just imagine Chris’s face if I decide to do them again though, haha. Maybe geese?? 😀

I haven’t had a phone for a week I think now, I bought one not long ago (a second hand one) and the screen stopped working, so I’ve sent it back and am waiting for another second hand one to come. It was strange last week without one, partly because we had storm Barra come to visit. The winds were really strong and I suddenly realised if anything happened I wouldn’t have any means of ringing anyone. We also had power cuts, so no wifi either. But all was well and we do have neighbours I could go to as well. I haven’t really missed it in a lot of ways, but the frustrating part is I can’t even check my bank balance without one because I tried to check it online and it wanted to send a security code to my phone to make sure it was me and ….I don’t have access…. my old phone is broken and won’t charge up. Modern life is so strange in some ways, my phone broke so I can’t access my bank account…ah well, hopefully the new (ish) one will be here soon.

As mentioned above, there was a couple of power cuts with the storm, but they didn’t last too long, hours rather than days. We’ve brought the gas hob and butane back into the house to use if we have any more. Everything else needs electricity to function. The hob and gas cylinder were here when we moved in and on our three year moving to Ireland anniversary they were back in. It’s very nice to have a cup of tea when you’re in darkness. It’s also good to have the fire!

Anyway, just an update and a big hello from us! Photographs will be back on when I have a phone.

love, Cathy.

3 Years!

As the title says, we’ve now been in Ireland for three years! Three whole years. Wow. If we stay two more years, we’ll have lived together in Ireland for half our marriage haha. That seems weird. I don’t know why, it just does. I suppose it’s because I still think of Derbyshire as home in many ways really. I wonder if that will change in the future? I guess we’ll find out! Our littlest is now older than our oldest was when we moved here, I guess he won’t even remember our old house or anything about Derbyshire really. Whereas J (the eldest of them) does, so he still misses it sometimes, he mainly misses family.

I’m not going to go on about what’s changed since we’ve got here, although the circumstances of our arrival do now seem bizarre! and very distant. Sleeping on air mattresses for a few months, waking up with damp skin and hair while the house dried out, not having a bath! Using a bucket in the kitchen and then later a big plastic plaster trough. I tell you what, I am so grateful for having a bath now, every time I get in I thank God for it :D. (and Chris who put it in.)

What I want to talk about briefly is dancing. I’ve started doing some exercise stuff recently on youTube and one of them is called grow with Jo and there’s a couple of exercise videos that use gospel/worship music and they’re brilliant! One of the songs is one called Shackles by Mary Mary. I hadn’t heard it in a long time but it’s one of those that I absolutely utterly love. It makes you just want to dance and praise God. So it’s been on a lot recently. Especially on our moving to Ireland anniversary day, I decided to dance.

This is because what the song says ‘take the shackles off my feet so I can dance..’ is my testimony about God really. That’s what He did.

As many know I used to be a drinker, I enjoyed it, I drank far too much and when I’d had a skinful I used to be up on that dance floor and quite embarrassing! I didn’t really dance much and definitely not publicly without booze.

When God saved me, I can remember one specific time when he broke this awkwardness. It was actually at a friend’s wedding, the evening bit, I just found myself up there on the dance floor, sober, and yes, probably looking stupid, but dancing and loving it, with no self consciousness, just enjoyment and such an awareness of Him and His love. It was awesome. I can remember dancing with a friend’s young daughter (she’s grown up now) and just messing about and twirling round. It made me smile then and the memory still does. God is awesome.

so this is my testimony –

Take the shackles off my feet so I can dance
I just wanna praise You
I just wanna praise You
You broke the chains now I can lift my hands
And I’m gonna praise You
I’m gonna praise You (Shackles (Praise you), by Mary, Mary).

In every part of life! Not just dancing.

Cathy.

Bit of an update.

Thought I’d say hello again as the last post was on thanksgiving a couple of weeks ago. We’ve been inside a lot as it’s been really rainy (it’s winter I guess!) and everywhere is mega soggy. We haven’t had snow though and it’s been fairly mild really for December I suppose. I just start feeling like staying in at this time of year and have to forcibly remove myself from the house in order to go anywhere. It’s quite funny though because once I’m out it’s like ‘wow, isn’t it lovely! lets go!’

I’ve mentioned before, Chris has been working six days a week for a while now, so he’s just off on Sundays and I have found that change difficult. We’ve had the car a bit more though, so that’s been good, although it is because Chris has put a motor on his push bike and has been going to work on that. He says he loves it (and yes it is totally legal in this country before anyone comments on it) and he wraps himself up in layers and a waterproof suit and rides off most mornings. It takes a bit of maintaining as he’s doing a fair few miles every day, but he seems to like that too and he’s good at it.

We’ve got four turkey’s left now, I need to process them very soon and get them in the freezer. There’s a bird flu warning out in Ireland and all poultry is supposed to be housed at the moment, I haven’t got anywhere inside to put them, so I’ll probably sort them this week. I’ll be glad when it’s done. There doesn’t seem to be many places in Ireland (not nearby anyway) that slaughter poultry, so it looks like it’ll be me doing it. I know there’s often strong feelings on this, but like I’ve said before, I think if you eat meat it is fairly healthy to know how it’s been brought up and kept. Also, to have an idea of what is involved.

We also have ten hens and one rooster in another pen (they do have a house) and nine young chickens in the polytunnel at the moment. The young ones are doing really well, they scared me the other week as I went in one morning and their crops (the place they store food) were absolutely massive, they looked like they were ready to burst! but it turned out they’d just gorged themselves and they are absolutely fine. They looked so odd, little chickens with massive bulges to one side of their necks. Because they’re light sussex/cream legbar crosses it’s interesting to see how their appearance changes every week because I’ve never seen these particular crosses before. They’re just getting little crests on the top of their heads at the moment. And unlike the purebred cream legbars (that are autosexing), I couldn’t tell which were male or female very easily, so I’m still waiting to be sure.

We’re still home educating, we enjoy it on the whole, it’s very nice to have the freedom to decide what to do with our time and brains! but like anything, there’s ups and downs. But to be honest I’m very glad we’ve had the continuity of just home schooling all the way through covid, it’s kept them without all the ups and downs of schools opening and shutting and you can attend this and see people and now you can’t and recently there’s a whole new debate on younger ones wearing masks etc. So I’m glad to be out of all that too. We aren’t homeschooling due to Covid, we decided to do it before it started, but I’m glad we made that decision.

I love Christmas, we’ve got a devotional book to do and we’re making some decorations and crafting and painting and all that a fair bit. We’ve got the tree up (I think it’s the earliest I’ve ever put it up) and we’re on countdown. I love talking about Jesus to J (he’s 6), it sort of clarifies things and makes you realise whether you can actually explain about it in a clear way or not, because a six year old is very forthright and honest and says if he doesn’t understand or gets a very clear look on his face if he’s bored or confused. And you also soon realise how much rambling you do rather than get to the point! (or how unclear you can be) haha.

Enjoy advent folks! If you don’t know Jesus, if you don’t know why he came, or what he has done, try having a read of one of the gospel accounts (Matthew, Mark, Luke or John). If you read one chapter of Luke a day in December, you get all the way through by Christmas Eve. Jesus is just the best present ever, He frees you, to be you. No one else and nothing else will ever do that. He is also real, not some mystical figure way back in history. Knowing him is a real and active thing, not just a distant figure in a book. And the only way we can meet God is through Jesus. As Jesus himself said ‘I am the way, the truth and the life, no one comes to the father except through me’ (John 14:6). Talk to Him, tell Him whatever you need to tell Him. Ask Him questions, seek Him and you will find Him (Matthew 7:7).

Good bye!

Cathy.

Thanksgiving.

…give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. (1 Thessalonians 5:18)

We’re doing thanksgiving this year. We aren’t American, we are English, living in Ireland, but we decided to do it. One of the reasons being we had a turkey! But to be honest we just loved the idea of it.

The whole thanksgiving thing set off a train of thoughts in me today. The turkey is currently in the oven and I’m making a butternut squash pie for pudding as well, the first thing was, that’s remarkable! I didn’t even think I could cook very well ten years ago. I couldn’t, compared to now. Well, I could cook, I just didn’t have much confidence. A friend encouraging me to cook for someone else encouraged a spark of self confidence and it grew from that time.

Then, I thought about what had happened over the past ten years and this is what I came up with. It’s actually really remarkable. Please be mindful that this is written from my perspective (Cathy’s), I can’t really tell Chris’s story. A lot is entwined but not all. His life changed beyond all recognition in a lot of ways too.

I was in terrible debt and that was dealt with just over 8 years ago, we went into marriage with no debt whatsoever. That was thanks to God and a group in the UK called Christians against poverty who helped me sort it out. Well, they did more than help, they were absolutely amazing.

I got married (I was a single parent for quite a long time before this), my eldest left home just before this, went to Uni and then stayed in the London area. Not long after getting married we had a miscarriage (which I found pretty devastating for quite a while) and then two sons, I left my job in nursing to be at home with them. We moved to Ireland just over three years ago, just under two years ago, Covid happened, which made things slightly awkward.

Chris left a job he loved but then got another one over here, doing something completely different but that he had the skills for. We left all our friends and family and church. Weirdly, due to Covid I’ve been able to continue in a way with that same church (for now). We’ve started homeschooling. We’ve been doing up a cottage and grounds. I can cook! We have chickens, ducks and turkeys (temporarily in the case of the turkeys) and grow our own veg etc to a degree. Chris has a motorbike (which he loves). In the last ten years I’ve lost my grandad, two uncles and my dad. I still love 90’s music and have it on at the moment while I’m typing this. Chris’s music tastes are even more dodgy. I’ve learnt to manage a home better (although always room for improvement haha) and a big thing I’ve learnt is that love should not be conditional. I’ve also learnt more and more to go to God with everything constantly and depend on him and I want this to continue. I’ve learnt much about how He is actually in charge no matter how much I’d like to be sometimes, haha.

The above is so simplistic, there’s so much more to tell as well, I can’t possibly tell it all. God is good and I am just so grateful to Him for his constant guidance, reassurance and love. Without His love, I would be completely lost. He has guided us, loved us, and worked in us. And I still feel like I’m only ankle deep with Him. There’s so much to look forward to. Life with you Lord is very exciting!

Thankyou for friends and family and hello if you’re reading this 🙂 We miss you. I’m cooking a turkey!!!!!! and it’s our own turkey! for the first time ever!

Love, Cathy.

Peace.

Chris said to me after the last post, ‘write one on peace’. I’ve been pondering this since, on and off.

The first thing I did was blitz memory verses I had on peace, the ones I came up with without going to the bible were:

He whose mind is set on me I keep in perfect peace. (Isaiah 26:3)

Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you. Not as the world gives, do I give to you. (John 14:27).

Jesus is my peace. (Ephesians 2:14)

And the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:7) – read the bit before this too.

I come not to bring peace but division. (ooh). (Luke 12:51).

When you’re happy and you know it clap your hands (got a bit distracted at this point). Still a good point though.

Do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink or what you will wear. (Matthew 6:25).

Do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow has worries enough for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble. (Matthew 6:34).

I will lie down and sleep in peace because you alone oh Lord make me dwell in safety. (Psalm 4:8).

The people who dwell in darkness have seen a great light. (Matthew 4:16).

What makes you fight and quarrel amongst yourself? Sin! Your own wants and needs. (James 4:1), I will put the correct version for this (from the NLT): What is causing the quarrels and fights among you? Don’t they come from the evil desires at war within you?

Trust in the Lord your God and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him Him and He will make straight your paths. (Proverbs 3:5-6)

In my father’s house there are many rooms…(John 14:2)

Alright, some of those aren’t directly saying peace in them, but believing/following them does give you peace. And they’re from memory so not entirely word for word. But I’ve chosen to leave them as they are with the references so you can look them up if you want to.

You know, sometimes, I think, how can I speak on peace? I don’t have peace. Then I think again, and the thing is, I do. Jesus is my peace whether I recognise this or not and I actually do have peace. This came to mind today as I lay in bed earlier. I actually don’t feel that well today, nothing serious, just feel a bit under the weather. I laid there this morning and suddenly realised how much God has changed me and my life. I had a direct flashback to lying in bed just before I came to know Jesus, when I’d just got back in from church in the very early days. In that case I was lost, I was curled up in a foetal position, I had very little hope in me, I was despairing, depressed, did not know what to do or where to go and then God guided me to himself through Jesus. The direct contrast between today and then was quite something. And don’t get me wrong, I don’t always feel peaceful, like I said, I was feeling under the weather today and missing England, but it was so entirely different to that afternoon over 13 years ago. The difference is God, coming to know Him and having Him dwelling inside me, knowing Him. Him loving me and guiding me no matter what, me wanting to be guided by Him and changed by Him and that’s it. It’s lovely. Sometimes I believe He gives us these memories so we remember what He has done.

Thankyou Jesus!

There’s also been other stuff this year, I’ve had a lot to process since we left England and there’s been some stuff that I needed to go over, to do with forgiveness etc. I found myself becoming quite bitter and angry at times (not so much now).

A while back, I was mowing and talking, not so much ‘with’ God, but ‘at’ him, mowing is brilliant, no one can hear you (or so I think) and you can get it all out. However, God very calmly and clearly told me that there’s no room for unforgiveness in a Christian’s life. And I realised I needed to deal with it and get on with things. And the thing is, you could say, you just ‘decided’ to do this, out of your own strength, and yes, there is an element of that, but the main element is actually a supernatural loving kindness of God where he just changed me. It changed very quickly from thinking of a certain person with bitterness and anger, to actually naturally thinking of the good stuff they’d done and are and actually liking them again. It’s quite something the love of God and what he does. I was reminded of this when I was listening to a preach a few weeks ago and the same phrase was used of ‘there’s no place for…’ and I remembered.

We need to look at Jesus and be changed, We need to have zero tolerance for bitterness and deal with ‘stuff’ quickly. Don’t let stuff fester, it isn’t good for you. And no, this isn’t some self help thing, this is real, this is God, this is just a small example of what he does. He is for us, not against us. He is a Holy God who wants a Holy people.

And one more thing, this peace I speak of is not some sort of mantra ‘I will have peace, I will have peace, I believe in God type thing. Caring about issues and speaking out when necessary is not in contradiction to this peace. It doesn’t mean we aren’t called to think and use our brains and care. I believe this sort of caring about major issues can drive us to God and prayer in amazing ways. It is about putting our trust in Him and doing life with Him and having faith in Him and resting in Him.

Amen!

Cathy.

PS. There are a lot more verses to do with peace. I just used the ones that came to mind. And yes, there’s a lot more that could be written but I’m going to leave it there, the kids need my attention too! 🙂 Bye!

Urgency.

It’s funny when you write anything that’s public, there’s such weird unseen and unsaid pressure on you. People from all types of backgrounds and beliefs reading it and actually judging what you write and possibly how you live. I find it can keep me from writing what I actually sometimes want to write, the questions arise in my mind ‘am I wrong?’, ‘have I put it right’, ‘am I doing it right’, ‘what if people hate it’, ‘do they hate me?’, ‘do they resent me?’, ‘do they pity me when I’m vulnerable?’ (I hate that thought, I think vulnerability can actually be a very good thing), ‘am I putting them off Jesus?’, ‘does talking about Jesus put people off my blog?’.’do the ‘experienced christians’ think I’m talking rubbish?’ ‘Do non believers think I’m nuts? And do you know the answer to all this? It doesn’t matter. I love people reading stuff I write and enjoying it but I also know that I have not been placed on this earth to make everything comfortable for them, no matter who they are. I know that it can be very good to make people (and myself) question things, sometimes even provoke responses and I believe God uses that quality in me for the good. I also know that He works in me and sometimes all I have to do is get it out, either in writing or in person and then it’s sorted. I believe it’s called external processing.

I love writing and I love writing this, but what I don’t love is the feelings it puts into me once I’ve written something, because quite often hardly anyone reads it and then I think, what’s the point? I know some love the smallholding stuff, the animals, the growing, the garden and the house progress and I think we’re all just that little bit inquisitive about other people’s lives, but I also know that I’m not just going to write about that stuff and that’s it, because Jesus in in me and with me and with us and delivered us from darkness into light. No matter what is happening at any point, he has still delivered us into his freedom and his light. As it says in the beginning of John, the darkness has not overcome it. (nor will it ever do, no matter what things in our lives or the world look like.).

So, what’s the point of this blog I’m now asking myself, I think it’s just to decide that I am going to carry on writing and I am going to include Jesus in it, because He is in every part of our lives, the Holy Spirit dwells in us and with us and we are His. And I do feel as well, an increasing feeling of urgency for people to know Him. So yeah, I’m going to be me, I’m going to write about practical everyday stuff and Jesus.

So now that’s sorted. It’s bank holiday weekend in Ireland this week, which is great, because it means Chris is off for two days this week, he’s mowing and strimming at the moment because there’s loads to do and he enjoys it. It was our 8th wedding anniversary recently, in some ways it feels as though it’s gone so fast and in some ways slowly. I feel like I’ve learnt so much since we’ve been married, I know people try to explain what it’s like before you get married, but you don’t really get it until you’ve done it and I am so thankful to God for his love and his guidance in relation to this particular relationship. I wasn’t very good at relationships before I knew Jesus and he has most definitely made me better and keeps prodding me and changing me and showing me how to just love. As the bible says

“And though a man might prevail against one who is alone, two will withstand him—a threefold cord is not quickly broken.” (Ecclesiastes 4:12) ESV version or:

“A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.” (New Living Translation version).

I love God, try him, you will not be disappointed, he loves like no-one else ever.

Thanks for reading!

Cathy.

What a difference a week makes….

Well, just over a week ago I was sat on a rock waxing lyrically about the ducks and all that. Since then, two have been killed, one last night, so this afternoon was all about moving them to the top of the field and trying to proof their run. It’s a little bit of a mystery how the duck was killed last night because it was dead in the run with some wounds, hadn’t been taken or eaten, and the others were ok. One of the drakes definitely got taken under the netting earlier in the week, there was nothing left but a few bloody feathers. I thought I’d sorted the problem by mowing it again and repositioning the electric netting, but obviously not.

But anyway, when I was trying to catch the remaining seven to take them up the field in the dog cage, one went missing, so we now only have six. Maybe it will turn up, but I’m doubtful somehow. Such is keeping ducks… It’s sad, but I’m really hoping that’s it now (and by some miracle the missing one turns up). It was hard work this afternoon, carting everything up the field including the ducks. That particular task involved lots of running and trips up the field one duck at a time, they are very skittish and don’t like being caught. They’re lovely animals. It’s a pity foxes and minks think so too.

It will get me fitter anyway, walking up the field every day with a wheelbarrow and water. (There was a hosepipe at the bottom of the field, that’s why they were there.) It’s also a lot drier at the top, I think I’m going to have to move the pen every week during the winter to try to keep the ground ok. It gets so wet and ducks just stick their beaks in there and make it into a swamp. So it’s a lot more work but necessary if I’m going to keep them.

Managed to get two in the cage, the others had to be taken up individually.

I enjoyed quite a bit of it, I quite like work like that, it’s challenging and I enjoy the challenge, but it did start to get to me towards the end. I have trouble with my feet, have done for quite a while now. The left one was pinned and plated quite a few years back now and the heel/ankle joint can be stiff and painful, but my right heel has been really painful for months and months now, it’s terrible in a morning and after today it is too. If anyone has any suggestions on what to do they would be gratefully accepted. I’m guessing I need to start stretching it out, I’ll look it up at some point. I keep thinking about a word I was once given saying ‘look after your feet’ and wondering how I was meant to have looked after them. At the time I just thought it was a metaphor for my spiritual life, but now I’m thinking it was a lot more practical than that! or maybe there’s a link, I don’t know. Anyway, any suggestions welcome.

For those who read my account about our youngest’s fall and his cut face. It looks like it’s healing fairly well, it’s still difficult to tell properly but he is well in general and it looks ok. Thanks so much to those who asked about him or said they would pray. And praise God for looking after him and us.

Like I’ve said in previous posts, we haven’t had the car much recently and don’t expect to have it much in the near future. Because of the weather, Chris is mainly using it for work. So if we want it we have to take him and then pick him up again. But on Friday it was good weather, so Chris went to work on his bike, and I decided to stop everything and take the boys to the beach. It was wonderful. They love it on there and there’s just so much freedom on a beach to run and play and just be themselves. They don’t seem to notice the cold much either, it wasn’t planned, I thought they’d keep their wellies on, but they took them off and were running and paddling in the sea and making channels and sandcastles and just loving it. That was a good afternoon. A much needed release for us all. I love the beach, I love listening to the sea and the birds and the smell of the seaweed and looking in rock pools and collecting shells. Just breathing it all in. All made by God and pointing to God. Things to enjoy.

Bye for now. Have a good week.

If you’ve got this far, thanks for reading too!

Cathy.

Well hello.

I maybe shouldn’t be writing this, I feel like utter rubbish today, so it may not be a good idea, but I guess we’ll see. I’ll try not to let it affect the writing adversely.

There’s a few reasons, most of which are personal, but also, littlest fell yesterday when we went out. We actually had the car for the first time in ages, so I took them out in the late afternoon, it was beautiful. Until he fell on a sort of boardwalk which has metal things hammered in to stop your feet slipping. He went face first and lacerated his forehead (small but punctured) and above his top lip, that one was a bit deeper than I’d like, it was gaping a bit, so I decided after agonising about it, to try A&E in case it needed something more than steristrips. I also rang the GP and the receptionist told me to take him to the hospital because of the head injury….

So, I picked him up, sat him down, applied pressure to the bleeding with my jacket, when it stopped we had to walk back to the car, that took about ten/fifteen minutes. The journey to Sligo hospital then took an hour. You have to pay for parking, I didn’t have any money, so thankyou God, a fella came along and gave me his ticket. I took them in (J was with me too). You have to go to a sort of portacabin to be initially assessed (and either give health insurance or medical card details or pay the fee). Then you go through to the actual waiting room. There’s barriers all over in the hospital because of COVID, it felt so weird. The waiting room was packed. It was obvious that ambulances were coming in quite regularly too and my heart sank. It had already been over an hour and a half since he’d cut his lip. So we waited and waited. It got to about half 7 ish and a member of staff came and asked people to reconsider why they were there and that was the prompt I needed as I had two uncomfortable kids in the middle of a crowded waiting room, in a hospital where it’s been known to have outbreaks of Covid. One of whom had been wailing not too long before. So we left. Then it was another hour to get home. So, all in all from him doing it to getting home it was probably about 4 to 5 ish hours. By that time, his lip had swelled, so stripping it wasn’t that effective really. I’m not an expert in facial stuff, but I’m really hoping it heals well and doesn’t get infected. Praying. It’s not too uncomfortable today, but it’s still oozing and the strips are only to give it a bit of covering really. His head seems ok. Thankfully no signs of problems there either.

I was only saying the other day, I needed to get a proper medical kit together. And by that I mean a proper one, not the terrible ones with useless things in that you get as a pack. I think this has confirmed it. At least I have some knowledge of what to do too. During lockdown I had to repair little one’s head twice, he fell on stones. They healed well. Just leaving it, providing it’s clean, seems to do it. (covered with the strips). But this time, the lip injury made me feel unsure. Thankfully, his teeth are ok too. Bless him. We’re an hour from the nearest hospital, so good to be prepared..

This is my opinion and my opinion only, but I think the health system in this country is dire. We were so spoilt in the UK, with minor injury units, fast tracking, proper assessments.. Children’s units…Yes, there are problems, but nothing like over here. I’m not even sure here what you have to do to get things like smear tests and all that. (I’ve just looked it up, you’re supposed to get them free from 25-60), don’t know whether you need to chase them…but for most things there’s a cost. Children don’t get free dental care either, or regular check ups, they get one in school I think and that’s it, as mine aren’t in school, they won’t. I think if you’re seriously ill in this country, you have a problem, because of the structure, not the staff.

God bless the NHs and God bless the Irish system, may it actually benefit the people and not harm them.

I know his injuries weren’t that serious, that’s not what I’m saying, there’s just no support for health here as far as I can see. It’s very much laissez faire..as far as I have experienced and see. I’m very grateful we have a medical card at the moment too.

Cathy.

And it’s Saturday..

Running out of title ideas haha. Anyway. I’ve just done the birds, it’s the afternoon time and I’ve come to sit down on a rock at what J calls his quarry, it’s at the side of the field. It’s beautiful at the moment, sunny, warm, the kids are playing up near the chickens, so I’ve got a moment.

These are my current views:

It’s nice isn’t it?

The ducks are just about living in a swamp now, I’ve just text Chris and said one day I’ll go in and never be seen again because I’ll have been enveloped by mud. They seem to like it though. And thankfully, they’ve started laying inside their house. They were just dropping eggs in the mud before. So I’m thankful both from a mud perspective and because crows and magpies have been nicking the eggs and they don’t seem to when they’re laid in the kennel.

That brown square is their pen. Edit: you can see my rock in this picture.

I’m thinking whilst I’m sat here, phone in hand, thinking what’s new! Not loads. Chris is working 6 days a week now, so I’m here with the kids most of those days. I’ve planted some perpetual spinach in the poly tunnel and we still have tomatoes that are still reddening. There’s peppers too, but no sign yet of them changing colour. I’m hoping they will but I can still use them if they’re green. There’s loads of sprouts and some beetroot that are almost up to size. I do love planting, it has to be said. The front garden is still flowering, the rudbeckia anyway, and a few others, needs tidying, but I don’t get much time for that at the mo. I’ve had to gain a new perspective on weeds this year and had to accept I can’t get rid of them all!

The turkeys are doing nicely, still have 6, they’re nice and healthy, and seem happy enough. I moved their electric fence yesterday to new grazing, so they had a bit of time out on the field. It was hilarious, the kids were out too and J helped me herd them back in. They’re quite easy to herd really.

That’s them before I moved them, I was actually looking at the wagtail at the time.

I’ve put a new little house in for the quail:

Continue reading And it’s Saturday..

Tolerance?

I always find it funny how God speaks the same thing through others when he’s also been speaking to you at the same time. This morning I listened to a preach where the speaker basically said that themselves on their own are not patient in the slightest and it really reminded me of a blog I was going to do earlier in the week. Well, I started it in my head and then never got round to doing it.

Basically I got told earlier in the week that I was ‘very tolerant’, I replied with ‘I am definitely not tolerant’ to which was replied ‘you are’, and I just said ‘well you’d better thank God for that’. Because the truth is, I’m not. Me, by myself, I really, really am not. I’ve lost count of the number of times I just want to verbally rip into someone or tell them not to be so stupid or just be very impatient and unkind. That’s where God comes in. He speaks to me and works in me and makes me learn to be quiet when I would really love not to be. He teaches me through mistakes I make too. He gave me a new heart. It’s hard judging what is right to say and what is not sometimes, but telling the truth in love as the bible says, definitely does not involve ripping someone a new one, so I’m learning and learning to love rather than take offence. I still do sometimes, but as I said, I am learning.

I also thought today of some of the stupid things I’ve done since knowing Jesus, there were immense amounts of stupidity before, but there’s been some pretty awesomely jaw dropping moments since then as well. It’s been thirteen years of knowing Jesus this year. So, if I have been insensitive towards you either in person or on t’internet or on here, I apologise. I was quite insensitive when lockdown first started and I couldn’t see why people were complaining, I am a bit of a this is what you’ve been given so get on with it type personality… I was also quite touchy when I first spoke about becoming catholic, I just love unity in the church and hate division and it comes out wrong sometimes. I also just love Jesus and think we spend far too much time talking in general and about issues that aren’t that relevant.

I also thought today of when I was a very new, enthusiastic christian and sent my daughter off with people she barely know to a youth christian camp. They were very nice people, but still…. I basically sent her because I listened to others too much rather than actually being sensitive and caring and actually listening to God and just loving her, so I apologise for that too! She didn’t really want to go and I shouldn’t have sent her. You can’t force faith.

I’ll leave you with that thought!

Humans haha, process is good…!

God bless you one and all.

Cathy.