• Life Skills Unlocked

    Life Skills Unlocked: Solving the Riddle of the Strong Smell of Cat Pee

    My kitchen smells like cat pee. Considering I don’t own a cat (yet), this is not a sentence I expected to type. A kitchen can smell like many things – the toast we burned at the weekend, the flapjacks I made on Tuesday, the cacio e pepe spaghetti we ate last night – but I would have to say that cat pee is just not one of the typical kitchen aromas. My face crunched into an expression of distaste, I ventured in nose-first. I sniffed the fridge. Nothing. I opened the fridge and cautiously sniffed. I could smell spring onions and cheese. “As you were,” I whispered, and closed the…

  • panic,  personal,  Thoughts on...

    Thoughts On… Adulting Struggles

    It is unseasonably warm in Ireland at the moment. In a freak occurence, the sun is actually visible, the clouds are wispy and barely-there, and the temperature has crept up to Irish-sunburn levels (which isn’t very high, but it’s high enough for people to wander the streets in singlets, puffing and red-faced, panting about how it’s “FAR too hot!”). I am currently sitting at my table, with a cup of tea beside me to wash down my many supplements*, thinking of the many, many things on my To Do List. The thoughts of all these things that need to be done have come together to form a thick, grey, thundercloud…

  • Thoughts on...

    Thoughts On… The Ring Thing

    So it turns out that when you get engaged, you wear a ring. Who knew, right?* It’s a whole thing. There’s the proposal, and all the things that come with that (champagne… lots of champagne), and then there’s the ring. Usually a shiny ring. Usually a shiny ring with a sparkly rock perched on top so that you can blind your enemies with some carefully-angled light reflection. While I was aware of all of this in a vague, theoretical sense, I hadn’t really thought about it. Like… ever. Of course I’ve been around other engaged people, and I’m not completely socially inept, so I have taken part in the customary, “Congratulations! Oooh your…

  • getting-engaged-wise-men-say-only-fools-rush-in-love
    so that happened

    Wise Men Say…

    There is one teeny, tiny thing I neglected to mention in all of my rambling about Mexico. I got engaged. We got engaged! There was an engagement? Basically, what I’m saying is that there was a very happily accepted proposal, and I know that makes it sound a little like a business deal, but in actual fact it was both completely unexpected and eerily perfect, and not at all like a business deal. More like a movie. Or a telenovela. I don’t talk about Scrubs much here because Scrubs is quite a private person, but we have been together for… a while. A long while. About eight years now. That…

  • Life Skills Unlocked

    Life Skills Unlocked: Reading for Enjoyment

    When I was a child, I would read books to teleport out of my life. One moment I would be lying in bed staring at the white ceiling, anxiety clawing at my throat, and the next I would be visiting prickly Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle, or laughing at Dogmatix and his fondness for trees. My introduction to reading was a steady and consistent diet of Beatrix Potter, Goscinny and Uderzo, Hergé, Roald Dahl, Dr. Seuss and Enid Blyton. I read compulsively, almost obsessively. As soon as I was able to read by myself, it became a fixation; whether we were out for a walk or it was after dark, I would have a…

  • Uncategorized

    Motivation Hesitation

    I was at a party on Friday. I was at a party on Friday for fourteen hours. That’s a lot of hours to spend at a party. It affords you the time to talk to people, to get into conversations you might otherwise not have had. It’s more than enough time to get comfortable with the idea of introducing yourself to everybody there, because after three West Coast Coolers and every red and purple gummy frog from the jar I was hyped up on the kind of sugar high it takes days to come down from. I’m hardcore, I know. It was the best kind of party, bringing together a…

  • Thoughts on...

    Pedal to the Metal

    Have you ever been go-karting? Not kiddie go-karting. I mean proper go-karting with a real track, and fast karts, and onesies that smell like manliness and oil, and helmets that make your head loll they’re so heavy? I have. Yes, I’m a sometime speed demon, and in case you’re wondering, yes, I do rock the child-sized onesies. The combination of child-size onesie and adult helmet makes me look like a bobblehead of The Stig. It’s a good look. I’ve always had a great time on the track. I’m a rubbish driver – running alternately on equal parts of adrenaline and sheer terror – but I have so much fun! I put my…

  • Thoughts on...,  Uncategorized

    Tangled

    Before I get to today’s more light-hearted post, I would just like to say thank you to everyone who read and/or commented on my last post. I was worried about people’s reactions, but everyone was thoughtful and kind. I was really touched by how people took the time and read and comment, even if they didn’t entirely agree. I know it’s a tricky subject. So thanks. Thanks for being great people. Back to more frivolous, Fridayish thoughts… I am terrible at maths. TERRIBLE. Numbers make no sense to me. I have an extremely short memory when it comes to maths. If you teach me a formula I will learn it. If…

  • Uncategorized

    Learning As I Go

    Adulting is hard. When I was very small and found out that Santa was a huge secret, and that everyone around me was in on it, I accepted it with good grace. I thought, ‘That’s some good secret keeping! Good job, adults.‘ Then I watched my parents sort through taxes and insurance, bank accounts and mortgages and doctor visits, and I decided – I’m still not quite sure how – that this must be part of a different, separate adult conspiracy. ‘Clearly,‘ I thought, ‘this is We’ll-Tell-You-When-You’re-Older material.‘ Teachers never touched on this Very Important Serious Stuff between classes on soil erosion and the Irish civil war. Over time, I…

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    Clothe Me, Olga!

    Today, I have a date with destiny. Okay, that’s not strictly true. I just said that for dramatic effect. Today I have a date with a personal shopper, which is much more terrifying. I am not good with clothes. I’m actually terrible with clothes. I dress half my age because it’s easy to pull on a baggy jumper and jeans and be done with it. I don’t know how to wear skirts or scarves. Anything that requires actual thinking (“Where does this arm go? How does this belt close?”) doesn’t belong in my wardrobe. Neither does anything that requires ironing, anything that has to be dry cleaned, or anything with…