Sunny postcards

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While booking tickets for this summer’s holidays in Poland and Hungary, I was thinking of all those barbecues, garden parties, joyful meetings with friends and family, splashes in my parents’ swimming pool and generally slow, lazy moments that were awaiting us. As it happens, most of those plans shattered  when just before we got there we learned that my mom was about to have a very serious surgery. We didn’t get to spend much time together and the time we had was often fearful and difficult but we still collected lots of happy memories. And I’m just happy that everything went well and we can make up for that time.

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We even managed to attend a weeding. It was wonderful; beautiful couple, magnificent palace, delicious food, funny moments. We’ll remember it for a long time.

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Hungary would be unbearable without air conditioning and ice-cream as the temperatures reached even 41°C. Luckily, we spent most days in water, only taking breaks to have langos or meet with some of our favorite people.

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Sweet time

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I proclaim birthday season officially open!

Last few weekends were rather intensive for us. I always await Saturdays with visions of sweet laziness in pjs till midday but usually we have to jump out of them much earlier to be on time for some party. I’m not complaining, we love to celebrate those special days of our friends and we usually have great time. Girls could go to parties five times a week if only they could, my little party animals. With very active and not as obedient two-year-old, however, they’re more work than pleasure to me at this time.

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Oh yes, our boy turned 2 two weeks ago. We had to postpone our celebration due to tummy bug but when we were finally  better, we had all our closest friends over and had a real blast. Misike didn’t understand what all the fuss was about but he sure loved all the attention ( and presents 😉 ).

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The best part for me was cakes. I made few birthday cakes and I had so much fun making them. Somebody asked me why I do it to myself. I am so busy being a mom of three and then I agree to make cakes that are hard work and time consuming. But the truth is that when you are a busy mom you need something creative, something yours. You need to do something, to make time to do something that calms you down, that makes you happy. Cakes are that to me so I son’t do it to myself, I do it for myself.

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December

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This year is ending really nicely for us. For the first time in years Misi had few days off for Christmas and is about to have few more for the New Year so we get to spend lots of time together as a family. For the first time in 8 years we will go to a New Years Eve party ( big thank you to my brother, Damian, who will mind our kids for us :-* ) and I’m beyond excited about that.

We also had wonderful Christmas. Preparations went smoothly and I could really enjoy every minute of Christmas celebrations. We listened to Christmas carols, played Christmas charades, exchanged gifts, Rosie lighted all the candles and Anabel read Gospel to us.

On the second day of Christmas girls and I watched “Ballerina” in the cinema. We all cried holding hands. I recommend it to all girls.

For the coming year I wish you all peace of hearts, slowing down and noticing all blessings and miracles in your lives, courage to dream big and boldness to follow your dreams. But most of all I wish you good, loving people around you .

Happy New 2017 Year!

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School ready

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School year has officially started and we have gained one more student in our household- Rosie has started Junior Infants. I was just as excited and emotional as her upon leaving her in her classroom. But she loved it and called it “a day of surprises”.

When we were still in Poland, Misi prepared girls room for a new school year. By replacing their beds with a bunk bed, we gained space for their new desk.

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For weekends we have encyclopedias and activity books. Don’t look at me like that ;-). I am not some over ambitious dragon mom who wants to make geniuses out of her kids by taking their free time and making them memorize encyclopedias and learn even on their days off. However, they are eager to learn and often ask if we can do some books so I keep them for those occasions.

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After our visit to Poland I also promised myself and girls that I will make time to teach them Polish. Books are my weakness and I decided I wouldn’t buy a new book for myself until I read all I have, so I bought lots for girls 😀 .

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And in my parents attic I found that book for first class that used to be mine. We will definitely go through it.

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I still  love the idea of lunch box notes. It’s a way to connect with your kids when their at school and to surprise them. I have a big collection of them on pinterest and I print some every month. And now, when Anabel is a fluent reader, every day I put a new joke into her lunch box to make her smile.

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You know how kids love to wake up first thing in the morning on summer days but as soon as school starts it is nearly impossible to get them out of bed on time? And then, when you manage to drag them out of bed, they take ages to eat breakfast, get their uniforms dirty while brushing teeth, can’t find their ties or shoes. Yes, school day mornings can be hard. That’s why it’s so important to be as organised as possible. I tend to plan girls lunches way ahead so they always get some sandwich, fruit, yogurt and snack. But recently I started to also plan their breakfasts. Girls really love american pancakes or waffles but what puts me of making them in the morning, is that you have to measure up and sieve dry ingredients. So even if I tell myself the evening before that I’ll make them for breakfast, we end up with toasts or cereal. And so I keep dry ingredients all measured up and ready for when I’m too lazy, which is nearly every morning ;-).

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Rosie’s graduation show

 

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In two days time Rosie will finish preschool. From September she will be in proper school, wearing uniform and doing homework. And as her preschool year is nearly finished, I feel she’s ready for “big” school. She learned so much. She knows lots of letters and numbers, can write her own name and even speak quite few words in Irish. All that education seems lost on her though, because she is clearly becoming a photo model, always ready to pose wherever there’s a sign of a camera 😀 .

Today we attended graduation show at her preschool and it was great. Such shows look very different here from what they are in Poland. Irish teachers don’t like to assign different roles to children. They put stress on a teamwork so all kids sing songs or declaim poems together.

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After the show we celebrated in a cafe and with giant bubbles in the garden. She got a little graduation present from us to show how proud we are of her.

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May bake off

Our May calendar is full of birthdays. Every weekend we celebrate with one of our friends. Girls are thrilled, they’re such party animals 🙂 . And naturally birthdays mean cakes. Every week of this month I had to bake a cake, sometimes even two, but I really really loved making each and every one of them. They were quite challenging but the bigger the challenge, the bigger satisfaction 😉 .

Ok, this one isn’t technically from May but since I’m showing off and I haven’t published it here yet, then why not. It was made for my friends little girl for her second birthday.

Nasz majowy kalendarz obfituje w urodziny. Co tydzien swietujemy z ktoryms z naszych przyjaciol. Dziewczynki sa w swoim zywiole, takie z nich imprezowiczki 🙂 . Naturalnie urodziny znaczy torty. W tym miesiacu co tydzien pieke torta a nawet dwa ale kazdy z nich przyniosl mi tyle radosci. Niektore byly wyzwaniem ale im wiekszy trud, tym wieksza satysfakcja 😉 . 

Ten tort nie jest technicznie rzecz biorac z maja ale skoro juz sie chwale 😀 .Byl zrobiony na drugie urodziny mojej przyjaciolki coreczki. 

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I have this friend, Agnieszka, who was one of the first people I met here, in Limerick. And then we both got married same October, we were pregnant with our first daughters and then with our sons at the same time. I treat her children like my niece and nephew and love those little sweeties to bits. So I was super happy to make a birthday cake for Amelka this year. She asked for fishes and she seemed pleased with the result.

Mam przyjaciolke, Agnieszke, ktora byla jedna z pierwszych osob poznanych tu, w Limerick. I obie pobralysmy sie w pazdzierniku tego samego roku, obie bylysmy w tym samym czasie w ciazy z pierwszymi coreczkami a potem synkami. Jej coreczke i synka traktuje jak siostrzencow i kocham nad zycie. Gdy wiec przyszlo mi zrobic tort z rybkami dla Amelki, bylam bardzo podekscytowana. 

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Colorful puppies saving people in danger? That show had to be a hit. We watch it every day and even Misike watches hypnotized. So when I got an order for this one, I couldn’t wait to get to work. But it turned out to be the most “painful” cake of the month and I’m not completely satisfied with results. I need much more practice with frozen buttercream transfers.

Kolorowe psiaki ratujace z opresji? Ta bajka musiala stac sie hitem. My ogladamy ja codziennie i nawet Misike patrzy zahipnotyzowany. Gdy wiec dostalam zamowienie na tort z psim patrolem, nie moglam sie doczekac by zabrac sie do roboty. Jednak ten tort okazal sie najbardziej “bolesnym” w tym miesiacu i nie jestem do konca zadowolona z rezultatu. Moje transfery z masy cukrowej wymagaja jeszcze wiele praktyki.

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My friend Ela, also celebrated this month and boy, did I straggle to find a perfect present for her. Apart from her children and helping people, that girl does not have other hobbies. She doesn’t drink alcohol or coffee, is not into make up and hardly ever wears jewelry. But she does love sweets. So I knew that if my present would not make her happy, a cake would. Well, I was right 😀 .

Rowniez moja przyjaciolka, Ela, swietowala w tym miesiacu i ludzie, jak ja sie nameczylam ze znalezieniem idealnego prezentu. Poza swoimi dziecmi i pomaganiem innym, ta dziewczyna nie ma innych zainteresowan. Nie pije alkoholu ani kawy, nie czyta, nie interesuje sie makijazem, i rzadko nosi bizuterie. Ale uwielbia slodycze. Wiedzialam wiec, ze jesli nie trafie z prezentem, ten tort uratuje sytuacje 😀 . 

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The last cake I made was for a 1 year old baby Olaf whose birthday we celebrated just yesterday. I can’t get over a fact what a good baby he is, just sitting and smiling most of the time. Happy birthday Olaf!

Ostatniego torta upieklam dla jednorocznego Olafa, ktorego urodziny swietowalismy zaledwie wczoraj. Nie moge sie nadziwic jakim dobrym szkrabem jest ten chlopczyk, tylko siedzi i sie usmiecha. Sto lat Olaf!

31st October

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Od tygodnia Irlandia celebruje Halloween. Sklepy przescigaja sie w wyprzedazach slodyczy, ulice i domy pelne dyni, duchow, zombie i przeroznych straszydel, kostiumy za pol ceny. Wszystkie szkoly organizuja imprezy halloweenowe dla dzieci tydzien wczesniej bo pociechy maja az tydzien wolnego z tej okazji. A okazja przeciez nie byle jaka, swietujemy przeciez smierc i zlo (to ironia oczywiscie). Przeraza mnie to, ze w Polsce coraz czesciej slyszy sie o celebracjach Halloweenowych. Jezeli nie ma u nas tak glupiej tradycji, to po co ja wprowadzac.

W Irlandii wyglada to inaczej. Irlandia jest ojczyzna Halloween, ktora Amerykanie chetnie przejeli i wypromowali. Mieszkajac tutaj z dziecmi w wieku szkolnym nie jestesmy w stanie tych celebracji calkiem uniknac. Obie dziewczynki po raz pierwszy poszly trick-or-treating i ekscytowaly sie tym od tygodnia. Anabel zainspirowana Once upon a time, ktory ogladamy z Misim namietnie, a ktory ona czasem podglada, postanowila przebrac sie za zla krolowa. Mialam wiele uciechy planujac jej kostium i makijaz. Rosie natomiast byla czarownica. Wybor kostiumu nie do konca po mojej mysli ale poczatkowo chciala byc zombie a potem wampirem, czarownica wiec wydala sie mniejszym zlem.

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Na imprezy halloweenowe do szkoly i przedszkola przygotowalam babeczki czarownice

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a na zamowienie przygotowalam torta straszna dynie.

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