Sunday, December 1, 2019


We were talking about Advent in class during the week. The kids were all excited about opening their advent calendars and getting their chocolate treat each day.
Well I bet none of them is as excited as I am about the advent calendar!
I was lucky enough to get one of  Marks&Spencer's The Gift of Beauty boxes.

I bought it a few weeks ago but I managed to resist opening it. Today being the first of December it was time to surprise myself.

And first up...

Hair we go! I'll be fab-u-lous by Christmas Eve!

Monday, November 11, 2019

Putting my foot in it

There was a lovely older teacher that used to do substitute teaching in our school a few years ago. One day she came to school in two different shoes. Nothing ever phased her and she just passed it off by saying
"Girls, just you wait 'til you reach a certain stage of your life and your brain turns to mush  because of a hot flush, then you'll  think of me".

Years passed.
I thought of her again today when I arrived into school and Mr Potterton kindly drew my attention to my feet.

I'd like to say that it was because of the dark morning and I couldn't see properly. And in my defense they were both the same height so I had no reason to look down.
I tried to pass it off to my class as a fashion statement, but no luck!

Monday, November 4, 2019

Don't speak too soon.

It's always hard going back to school after a break - for teachers as well as for pupils.
I have been teaching for 35 years and I still can't sleep the night before school starts again.

Today, however was a particularly good "first day back to school" day. We got stuck into our work, while having a fair bit of fun. The highlight was when several groups of kids came up to me with pictures they had drawn with lovely little messages written on them for me.
So it was, that at home time when everyone was lined up at the end of my classroom ready to leave, that I was feeling particularly happy with myself and thinking
"You know, I think that after all this time, I have things under control"
It must have been the universe warning me not to get so sure of myself, because one little lad came up to me and said
"Miss, I don't feel very well".
And before I could do anything, the poor little mite proceeded to projectile vomit over the floor, himself and me!
I managed to send the rest off to the school gate before they too heaved in sympathy.
I got him sorted out, cleaned myself off, got him to the school gate and then back to clear up the trail.
Ah yes, I figure it was karma coming back to bite me in the a*** and to let me know that as a teacher you can never get too comfortable in your ability. There is always something unexpected just around the corner.
Bring on tomorrow!

Sunday, November 3, 2019

The Northern Star!

I am so happy to be taking part in Killucan-Raharney's fund raiser "A night at the Oscars". Last night was the night when we discovered what film we would be doing and who our fellow cast members would be.
I'm delighted to be part of....Derry Girls!
Still don't know what part I have...but I better start brushing up on my Norn Iron accent!
What about ye?

Saturday, August 3, 2019

A very special mam

Today is Mam's birthday. I went into the shop to get her a card. as usual!
I searched among the "Special Mam" cards to find a suitable one. I particularly liked the sentiment on this one.
....a blessed day,
because it is another one for us to share......

I have just had a message from my sister , who was visiting Mam this afternoon. It was a photo of my card and a question!

"Noeleen, should you have gone to SpecSavers?"
I guess I should have!!!

Friday, August 2, 2019

You're never fully dressed without a smile.

I was paying at the till in Marks and Spencer's.
"Here's a voucher for 20% off Men's".
"THERE'S 20% OFF MEN!" I exclaimed.
"Oh I wish!", she replied.
We were having the craic when the cashier beside us looked over, did a bit of a double take and asked
"Weren't you on Operation Transformation?"

I got a shock as it's been three years and I figure people have forgotten it by now.
"Well, yes", I replied.
"I thought so", she said. "I recognised your smile and your laugh!"

I got a touch of the fuzzy wuzzys! I mean, if that's what I'm remembered for, well...

Thursday, August 1, 2019

Fair exchange is no robbery

I was delighted to meet up with Lucy, my fellow Operation Transformation leader.

As proof as to how much the show changed us, I brought...
homemade Oaty Banana buns.

In return Lucy gave me home grown potatoes from her garden.

We couldn't have done that pre-OT!

Thursday, July 25, 2019

Add to cart

I went into Woodie's Home Store and More to get two door knobs for my bedroom door.I came out with....

  • a wipe clean table cloth
  • a rotary chopper for vegetables
  • an electric kettle *suddenly remembered that mine gave up the ghost this morning
  • four drinking glasses
  • two toilet seats *well, they were half price and I feel my old ones need replacing

  • a plunger

You may have noticed that the one thing that missing from that list is the door knobs. They didn't have the ones I wanted.
So now I'll have to risk going into another hardware shop and be confronted by all the things I didn't realise that I needed!

Sunday, June 23, 2019

Summer solstice- woah, we're half way there

Well, I'm certainly not surprised.
Stood on the scales this morning and I was 3 lbs up.
Actually I'm surprised it wasn't more!

I had a fabulous weekend in Killarney, eating and drinking my way through the AIMS weekend. But that wasn't what did the damage. If I had come home on Sunday evening and said
"Right, that's it. Weekend over, now lets get back on track".
I would have dropped those pounds like I did the previous week.
But no, it was like the dam burst. I ate anything that wasn't nailed down! I couldn't get motivated  at all.
Luckily it was the summer solstice.
What has that got to do with it? I hear you ask.

My friend Fiona was having a special yoga class out by the lake in Belvedere house on Saturday morning. In honour of the longest day of the year she was concentrating on our solar plexus (!) which I am reliably informed, is located behind our belly button and is the centre of our determination and confidence.
It is literally "the fire in our belly"

I was a bit worried that all those happy vibes wouldn't be able to penetrate the extra layer of  fat that had deposited itself in my belly since last week, but I decided to give it a go.
And guess what, it worked!
For me, the most powerful part was when we were doing "The Warrior". As we stood, tall and proud, pointing out over the lake, Fiona told us to look down our middle finger and concentrate on what we wanting in our future for the next six months.
To get back to my comfortable weight, get back to my comfortable weight, get back to my comfortable weight,  I chanted.
* Posed by a model...not me!!!

So now I'm very much fired up and ready to go. This week I intend to have more fire in  my belly than sugar!

This is still my favourite part of the class...time to relax!

Thursday, June 20, 2019

Well.that backfired

Not being organised this morning, I had to pop into a local shop to get my lunch for school. There was obviously a school tour happening as there was a queue of kids also buying their provisions for the day.
One little lad at the top of the line had over-stocked a little bit.
"You owe another 60c", informed the shop assistant.
His crest-fallen face meant he didn't have the money.
"I'll just ask me mam", he replied, and ran out.
I had reached the top of the queue and was getting my change, when he returned.
"Me mam says that she doesn't have the money with her and she'll pay you tomorrow."
The sun was shining, I was in a good mood, so I replied.
"Here, take the 60c out of my change."
His face lit up and he thanked me profusely.
I was feeling very Mother Theresalike as I left the shop, just behind him.
A woman came storming in.
"Who do you owe that 60c to?" she asked.
"It's okay, Mam, the lady paid for me".
"WHO?", she demanded.
"Her," he said, pointing to me.
I smiled and said
"It's okay. Pay it forward." and waited expectantly for her thanks!
"No, here you are", as she pushed it into my hand. "I'm not owing anyone money."
I was a bit taken aback at her aggression.
"And as for them in here. He's late for his school tour and they know that!" she shouted, glaring at the shop assistant.

My inner teacher wanted to scream back
"It's not their fault. How on earth are they supposed to know when the local school tour is leaving?  It's yours for not having his lunch ready or getting to the shop in plenty of time."
but I didn't! I wanted to survive the day.

I walked to my car, feeling deflated.
So much for my good deed of the day. I felt like a total bitch for trying to help.

Sunday, June 16, 2019

Arrested development

LMVG headed off to Killarney this weekend for AIMS - Irish Musical Societies Awards. On Friday night we had our annual pub crawl. As we had done The Full Monty as our musical , we went with the "police" theme.

Being the actress that I am (!) I got completely into character...okay, maybe I got a bit carried away.

But hey, the streets of Killarney are a safer place tonight because of me!!!

Thursday, June 13, 2019

It's a weighting game.

I've lost two pounds this week!
Wait....before you rush to congratulate me, might I just add that I've lost the two pounds that I put up over last weekend n Clare. So yes, I weigh exactly the same as I did last Friday.
So I can look at that two ways.
Firstly be annoyed that I haven't lost any weight this week.
Be a bit happy that I've lost that two pounds and am not two pounds heavier.
Yesterday I was talking to a friend on mine who said
"Do you know that you've motivated me?"
"Yes. I've been trying to lose weight with no success. I was just about to give up when I read your blog. The fact that you were so honest about putting back on weight but were determined to lose it again gave me the kick to keep going myself."
And do you know what? She motivated me right back!

i'd love to be able to say that I'll be totally focused this weekend....I won't! A gang of 1,000 of us musical heads are heading to Killarney for the AIMS weekend....kinda like the Tony Awards for Irish amateur musicals. It will not be a self-controlled type of weekend. Once again it's about damage limitation.
I do have my lunch ready for the train so I'm not dependent on the trolley food.However, after that, it's a mine field.
But I am not throwing in the towel. I'll be back next week, be it heavier or lighter.

Monday, June 10, 2019

Getting there by degrees.

Where does time go?

The photo on the left was taken at my graduation from Carysfort in 1985.
Look how young and innocent I was then!
The one on the right was taken at my graduation from Maynooth this year.
There have been many changes in those 34 years.Some for the better, some not so much.

The message behind those two photos is that it's never too late to learn, especially if its how to work a hair straightener!