Irish Mammies at Babytalk and Ballymaloe!

The Irish Mammies show is coming to babytalk festival! Babytalk is a new pregnancy and baby event with shopping, entertainment, readings, demos and talks. It’s taking place in O’Reilly Hall, UCD, Dublin on 22-23 February 2014 and the Irish Mammies show is part of the line up. Tickets start from €10 and on sale now or visit

Hallowed Out

This is the week of Halloween night. Traditionally it was a time when wraith-like creatures haunted the darkness, causing havoc in the world of the living. But it’s not all about teenagers drinking cans around burning pallets. It’s not just Arthur’s Day for tots. The history of Halloween in this country is almost as old

Happy Stance

I’m a great believer in serendipity, using it as a perfectly adequate substitution for hard work. The word means happy accident or fortunate mistake. It was apparently coined by the 18th century Horace Walpole after he heard of the Persian fairytale The Three Princes of Serendip. The princes had a happy knack of making discoveries

Rose To The Occasion

The Rose of Tralee: in the modern world of televisualising, it’s a rarity. There are not many programmes that an entire household will actually sit down and watch together, on a TV, live, interrupted only by trips to the kettle and a bit of snarky tweeting. As the fine sensible smart girls nudge, wink and

Post Haste

It’s the part of the internet that makes you a little sheepish. You’re filling out a form, typing in your name and address and then the website asks for your ZIP code. You almost blush on behalf of Ireland. It’s like being the customer in a queue whose situation is complicated and needs to speak

An Awful Larynx

It’s getting late in the bar in Alphabet City on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. The place is called the Dorian Gray. Apparently the owners are distantly related to Oscar Wilde. Either that or it’s because it hasn’t aged a bit over the years and the back room is in an awful state. I’m


“’Janet! Why shouldn’t we have a Secret Society, too?’  said Peter.” Peter and his sister Janet have the good fortune to find themselves in the middle of Enid Blyton’s first short story about The Secret Seven. They are virtually guaranteed many summers of adventures, following skulkers and solving mysteries before the cack-handed police arrive. And,

Voter Anxiety

I’m not proud to say this: I’m not a great voter. I mean, I do vote – it’s only good manners after everyone went to so much effort to print all the ballot papers and shake off the yoke of colonial oppression ‘an all.  It’s just that quite often I haven’t given it enough thought. 

Baths of the Day

Arthur’s Day: Traditionally a time for handwringing about where we are as a nation. Commentators will ask: What can we do to change our preoccupation with alcohol? That battle is long lost. Let’s just assume that we are a nation of borderline functioning alcoholics and shur-what-harm-is-an-oul-drink? Let’s also assume the government will always lack the

On The Up?

It happened again this week. When I heard the news, I felt like the female lead in a melodrama who doesn’t want her lover to continue talking because she knows the words are empty. ”No. Don’t speak. Don’t Speak. I’ve been hurt too many times. Don’t TORTURE me with hope!” After the bumping and grinding