We are headed back to Ireland in April! Our plan has always been to stay long term, but little glitches here and there have kept us from realizing our dream. This time, however, I am hopeful that with a little extra paper work and several international phone calls we will be successful in our wild pursuit of Irish living.
We will be cruising, as always, but on a new line this time. This time, we will be taking a Princess cruise. As you may have read in my past posts, we absolutely LOVE Holland America Line, but they don’t get us close enough to the British Isles. We have taken Queen Mary in the past and experienced the worst cruising possible, as you may also have read. So although they are the most convenient to us, it’s not going to happen.
I am really excited to see what Princess cruising is like, but also apprehensive, as I like to know what to expect ahead of time. (Seriously, I Google Street Map my way through a new area before I go there, so I feel more familiar with it when I get there!) I think I’m just a little wary due to our problems with Queen Mary II.
We’ll be staying in Cork City, our favourite place in the world, and we’re already planning all the places we’ll be visiting as soon as we get there. The kids want to go to Fitzgerald Park and the city library, I can’t wait to go to the The Natural Foods Bakery (oh my gosh, their spelt hummous sandwiches!!) and Waterstones bookstore. And of course, we are desperate to see all of our friends again!
The previous two times we’ve been to Ireland, we’ve arrived in late summer/early autumn, and been back in the States by Christmas. This time we get to spend spring and summer there! I’m really looking forward to being there in different seasons, although the temperature in spring and summer is not much different than that of autumn!!
So we are planning and planning, I know it’s still 8 months away, but we have so much to do to get our house ready for rental season next summer. Because we just bought our house, there are a lot of things we have to do immediately, rather than as needed, like we would do if we were staying in our home long term. We’ve had to spend quite a bit at the garden center, so the yard will look nice come next spring. I also have to consider having irrigation put in. That’s not an expense I was anticipating. Right now, we are going through a heat wave and everything is so dry. Most of my neighbours have given up on watering their yards, which are now as brown and crunchy as overdone chocolate chip cookies. Because I’ve got new plantings, I have to water everyday, early in the morning and after the sun goes down. My sprinkler is on close to 8 hours a day. I don’t want to know what my water bill is going to look like.
We have the last of our furniture being delivered early next week and, hopefully, that will be the end of big purchases for a while. I’m hoping to spend most of September and October going through boxes in the basement, many of them have been packed up since before our Australia trip in 2012!
So that’s what’s happening in our lives right now, it’s all go as usual!
If any of you have taken a Princess cruise, I’d love to hear about it. Leave a comment, or a link to your blog post! In the meantime, enjoy some photos from the garden today!