Sunday, March 20, 2011


How great is it to have all your family (except for one son-in-law) together for your eldest's 40th Birthday! There were some serious travel challenges with a 10-month-old and a 22-month-old but parents and children survived and returned home tired and jet lagged but none the worse for wear.

We  celebrated Maggie's big 4-0 with a birthday dinner in a family friendly restaurant near Maggie's place in Donnybrook then went to the Hurt's for cake.

Leo, Katie, Maggie, Lyla

Jennifer and Charlie just a few hours after the flight from Chicago.

Four decades of flames!

We had a week filled with being together and seeing all the Dublin sights. The cousins got to know each other and it was such fun to see them all playing together.

Charlie, Leo, Lyla, Kat

Jennifer and Charlie at the children's park in St. Stephen's Green.

Leo just wanted to walk!

It was a beautiful early spring day at St.Stephen's Green

Robin had a gig in Temple Bar so we took the whole family to hear him play. There was lots of dancing and good times. Here's Lyla and Leo enjoying the show.

We took a quick trip up to Howth. It's a picturesque fishing village north of Dublin. The sun was shining but it was windy and very cold!

Here we are fighting the brisk Irish wind.

After Katie and Leo left we took Lyla and Charlie to the Dublin Zoo.

Charlie and Aaron

Maggie, Lyla and Charlie looking for the wild beasts!

The rhino's proved to be everyone's favorite - the baby especially!

Lyla was a great caretaker for Charlie.

The Smith's at the zoo.

Charlie and Lyla at the window in the lounge on top of the Guiness Brewery.

They were very busy, exciting, and happy days together. We have lots of happy memories and are all looking forward to being together again soon!

Everyone had left by March 12 but I stayed on and got to see the St.  Patrick's Day Parade in Dublin.  The Parade was based on a short story, "Brilliant", by Roddy Doyle, a famous Irish writer, so the floats were all characters from the story. I thought everyone did a great job and we all really enjoyed the Parade.

Of course the Parade began with an Irish bagpipe and drum corps.

Here are some of the floats based on the story's characters.

I think the people in the crowd are just as entertaining as the Parade. Check out the mohawk on this spectator.

 And these ladies were definitely dressed for the occasion.

I caught this little boy checking out the fun from his window.

One special little Irish girl enjoyed herself thoroughly!

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