At the beginning of the summer I wrote about my maternity leave and how I had every intention of making the most of my time off since I am so lucky to get so much of it.
My mat leave is officially over, and I am now on un-paid leave for the next little while. I wish I could be taking the full 4 months I am allowed but it’s not in the cards and I’ll be heading back at the end of January.
Since things haven’t turned out how I expected/hoped during my time off I wanted to look back and think about the positives and the highlights of my time off so far because there have been many. And I hope that revisiting our bucket list might inspire me to make the most of what’s left. I know the holidays will be hard for me this year. But it’s still our first holiday season as a family of five. I figure we have a limited number of Christmases when the kids are really young and I just am not willing to let a single one slip past without joy.
So it’s time to remind myself what we wanted to do and to either continue with that plan or adjust.
Our Maternity Leave Bucket List
√ 1.Pick strawberries. While fresh strawberries are abundant in Ireland there are few places to pick your own, however I hear The Apple Farm in Tipp will have pick your own in a few weeks. Strawberry Picking for my birthday was an absolute highlight of the summer!
2. Manis or Pedis with the Princesses now that there are two men in the house it’s time us girls start sticking together. While we’ve done the at home kind I have been keeping this for the winter since it is not weather dependent.
3. Lunch at The Pink Elephant on a sunny day. With a nice beach walk and shell/rock hunt after. I had really hoped for this to be a summer day with a walk on the beach but we never did make it. We were however lucky enough and blessed with the sunshine to make it to the beach lots this summer.
√4. Paint Rocks We spent an entire summer painting and selling rocks when I was small. My dear Princess M loves painting rocks!
√5. Homemade popsicles/ice lolls
√6. Visit Dublin Zoo and FOTA Wildlife Park in Cork. Well FOTA at least anyway. But we did TWO zoos while we were home in NY over the summer so I think we are all had our fill of animals, I am sure we will make it to Dublin some day.
√7. Have a sleepover with Princess M on the futon in the play room.
√8. Splash in muddy puddles….this is Ireland after all
√9. Eat chocolate/vanilla twist soft serve ice-cream in NY. Twice…and also in Canada.
10. Swim in a lake in NY. we never did make it to the lake, we opted to take the kids up to Niagara Falls instead so the only swimming there was the hotel pool!
11. Have a fondue party. My sister and her family gave us a fondue set and we don’t use it enough.
12. Picnic in Fitzgerald Park, Cork. We love picnics and Fitzgerald’s Park in Cork is a special place. How did we miss this one? We picnicked A LOT this summer but it was mostly at the beach because the weather was THAT warm.
√13. Wash cars with Princess M.
14. Visit the M.O.S.T. in Syracuse.
√15. Visit a farm.
16. Spend the day in Cobh, Co Cork when a cruise liner comes in. The cruise season might be over but Cobh is pretty in the Christmas so maybe we will still get down there.
√17. Participate in World Social Media Day.
√18. Have an indoor picnic on a rainy day.
√19. Water gun fight.
20. Fly kites.
√21. Take family photos. We did this in NY and if you are in the Syracuse area there is no one as talented as Lisa Rossi Photography for maternity, new-born, and family shots. I swear.
22. Visit the Ewe Sculpture Garden
23. Afternoon tea with the princesses. This is one of my favorite treats that I do with my girlie friends and it will be a nice treat to introduce the girls to. I’m waiting for the Christmas decorations to go up around here because Princess M will love it. The King actually took Princess B for afternoon tea. He didn’t get it. She loved it.
√24. Library story time.
√25. Enroll Princess M in a class.
√24. Try a new park.
25. Go to the drive in
√26. Go to a concert with the King…like Bruce in July!!!!! If I actually had a real bucket list seeing Bruce live would be on it. We were so lucky that he came to Cork this summer and the King and I had a great date night!!!
√27. Plant flowers
√28. Take a road trip somewhere new.
√29. Make sundaes
√30. Have a make your own pizza party. Is it possible to do this TOO much? I like to think this is making pizza a ‘healthy dinner’ since we are making it at home….I’m not so sure our Make Your Own Nacho Parties are remotely healthy though.
So that’s where we’re at. All things considered I think we did a good few Irish and American things on our list. We’ve done so much more over the past few months and I am really looking forward to celebrating Thanksgiving and the month-long celebration that is Christmas over here! I love Christmas in Cork and I can’t wait to talk about it all through December! Our first Christmas party is actually the day after Thanksgiving. That whole weekend we are doing Christmasy things and I can’t wait!!!!!