Thursday, February 27, 2014


Another wonderful day - bright blustery showery - full of energy!

As the days lengthen and the months of the coming year begin to fill with exciting prospects, a great step was taken today.

We began to re-slate the roof of the main house. After complete renovation of the roof structure, including up to the minute, state of the art steel beams (!) After over 30 years of decay, the roof begins to take on its stone mantle.

A small beginning, but getting the set-out right is all, now we will be flying!

in glorious synchronicity, the garden bursts with new growth

evening sunshine - February light

wonderfully green

our diminutive cherry tree another winter almost over, prepares for spring


a new plot of daffodils ready their charms

our poor greenhouse, on the brink, but plans are in place for rescue!

pussy willow; Slievenaboley

new beginnings! Slievenaboley behind

beautiful stones

we are inordinately excited by this small change!

14 X 24's - high class slates

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Gorse Blooms at the Bloody Bridge

I was working in 'The Kingdom of Mourne' today - my birthplace, the hinterland of the town of Kilkeel, rejoicing on the gently south sloping skirts of the Eastern Mournes.

A cracking day, so regretting the chance for an 'outside day' at home, I took Charlie along with me, as an excuse to get my first outing of the year on the Mourne Coastal path next the Bloody Bridge.

Mourne Heritage have recently carried out some very pleasing sympathetic 'landscape improvements' to the area, which enhances the spot.

I was not disappointed, the sky was blue, the sun shining and the heady almond scent of the gorse blossom was so evocative. It really was a portent of spring. Wonderful! 

steely seas one way ....

.... positively Mediterranean the other ....

.... but only to look at!

450 million year old seabed, bent and fused by the intrusion of the Mourne Granite 50 million years ago

the gorse is in bloom

looking towards Slieve Donard

you can just see the back castles of Slieve Binnian

Mourne Coastal path

the almond smell from the gorse blossom was wonderful

spectacular seas ....

.... and skies

Friday, February 14, 2014

Valentine Memories

tonight, we are celebrating Valentine's day together in traditional fashion with flowers, bubbly and a nice meal.

our mobile home - all the comfort you need!


Makes me think of another such evening, the last in our beautiful Trassey home, in 2010

the table and the vase are the same
Little did we know the drama, and the wonderful adventures that lay before us! 

leaving day - a bit of a surprise!

Check out the blog post from February 2010 here

Sunday, February 09, 2014

February at Last!

January can be a difficult month.

  • winter festivities are over
  • the new year has begun
  • great plans and resolutions are made, yet,
  • events seem to scheme against achievement
  • bad weather
  • short days
  • low energy
  • little seems to get done

At last, thanks to our great team of friends, we get stuck in clearing outside the gallery, in preparation for Easter and the good times ahead.

beautiful signs of the New Year - snowdrops; flowering here since the times of our predecessors,
so well over 50 years 

the task ahead: all removed from the house during renovation.
No skips, no landfill, just repurposing.
This will be the new terrace

Help arrives

a glorious morning, one of the precious few this year

our very own mountain - at least 10 tons of it!

the team - ready to go!

buried treasure - found in the heap - a perfectly preserved handkerchief; souvenir of Scotland

getting stuck in

Charlie, helping out in his own inimitable style!

meanwhile: exquisite hazel flowers. There may be nuts!

Our poor greenhouse, much damaged by the storms, now roped down for protection

not much glass intact

buried treasure: a 1920 old penny
sorted and cleared - fantastic

a very well deserved cup of tea - thanks Caroline, Georgie and Paul,
we couldn't have done it without you!!

Pride of Place - our new photo montage, thanks to Caroline

it actually looks like we're making a difference

when this is finished, it will give us a terrace with spectacular views
Sunset - a warm glow all round

the Moon portends a chilly night -
definitely one to be chilling beside the stove!