Breaking The Silence

August 22, 2016

I’m just here to break the silence. We’re not quite back into the swing of our regular, non-traveling lives yet, so you’ll have to wait a little bit longer before I unleash the overshare of photos. In the mean time here’s a shot that would lead you to believe that somehow en route to Ireland, we took a wrong turn and found ourself lost on a Mediterranean island. But no, this is in fact Ireland. Co. Wicklow to be exact and this is the type of weather we were lucky to experience for most of the trip.

Next Stop, Ireland

August 8, 2016

This week The Husband leaves for Rio to do his thing for the 33 athletes he has competing at the Olympics. And while he’s in Rio, we (the boys and I) are headed to Ireland. Our final trip of the summer, may as well make it a good one. I’m so excited for cooler temperatures and lots of fun with family and friends. We’ll be gone for 2 weeks, so the blog will be resting up and enjoying a little break of its own during that time. But it would be wrong of me to leave without giving you a little something to stare at in our absence. So how about 4 handsome little cousins hanging out and having a blast last week during our trip to Massachusetts, before its onwards to the Irish cousins.

Paul and James have a backyard zip line.

Paul shows Keane how its done.

Looking a little nervous but big cousin is on hand for some moral support.

Away we go!

He did it! Once Keane got a taste for the zip line, there was no getting him off it.

James bringing some personality to the zip.

Cullen showed zero interest in zipping, there was too much digging to be done.

Rocks!

Whats this?

A baby snake.

The curiosity. Close, but not too close.

Some road works were happening near Paul and James house so we took a walk to get a closer look at all the diggers and dirt.

Cullen and his love for vehicles and dirt.

In this moment all his dream are coming true.

James and Cullen.

Hot, dirty and hungry, back for lunch.

Paul and James were running in their first track meet while we were there so we all went along to support and cheer. But where’s Cullen??

With everyone distracted he saw an opportunity to cone steal.

Paul in hurdle action.

Speed demon.

Low-5 from Keane for a job well done.

James up next and I just had to include this photo of his competition and his “unique” hurdling technique.

James technique is a little more efficient.

Cullen offering post race snacks, thats he’s already eaten

James in the 100m.

Post meet and The Husband gives out American Track League t-shirts to all the competitors.

We call this “free advertising”.

The boys get ready to have a race of their own, but Keane is carrying some extra weight on his back.

This weight is not easily removed.

And we’re off!

A Nod To Myself

August 6, 2016

Before I became a mother and my blog, Facebook and Instagram’s a platform for oversharing photos of my kids, I was an athlete. This weekend saw the opening ceremony of the Rio Olympic Games and I’m proud to say I am an Olympian. Yes, sometimes you forget you were anything else before kids. Once they arrive they are all consuming and their take over it broad, nay, entire. So in honor of myself, my life and my career pre-kids, this blog post is a nod to the fact that I was an athlete, a world class athlete, a national champion and record holder, a European medalist and yes, an Olympian.

You know it was a great Family Reunion weekend when it takes you almost every spare minute of your entire week to work through all the photos. Once you’ve done that, you’re then faced with the challenge of which ones to showcase on the blog. There are a lot of Doyles in this Doyle family and over the 2 days there was so much fun, so much activity, so much connecting, reconnecting and catching up that resulted in sooooo many photos being captured. Jack and Anne and everybody involved in organizing and co-ordinaitng this wonderful weekend, “Thank You”. It was great having so much of the family together. Catching up with familiar faces and getting the opportunity to finally put faces to names usually only seen on the Christmas Card list. Having all the youngest Doyles meet and play together for the first time in some cases was¬†wonderful to watch. All your efforts and all of the hospitality shown to us over the weekend was nothing short of amazing. We can hardly wait for the next one ;)

My sister-in-law Dinara and I shot our ass off over the the 2 days. Our cameras were literally strapped to us like a 5th limb. Capturing the enjoyment of the weekend and preserving memories that only become more precious with time was the goal. Today I’m sharing just a small sample of what was captured. If anybody doesn’t spot themselves in any of these photos, don’t panic, I repeat, DO NOT PANIC. There is a gallery that will be making its way via e-mail to everyone that will contain ALL of the images. Selfishly my blog will mostly feature photos of my kids.

There we are, arriving fashionably late to Day 1 of the reunion. The 2 grumpy faced children in tow might give you a clue as to why we were late. Oh and P.S. if I’m in the photos its all thanks to Dinara for ensuring my presence was visually documented.

Not long after our arrival and our frowns have turned upside down and we are ready to play.

Not sure all the activities are being carried out according to the rules, but as we all know, rules are meant to be broken.

Oh the dunk tank. Cullen takes control of the button pushing.

Keane dropped right in.

James for dunk.

Keane checks out some old family photos, not really sure what Cullen and I are up to, but he appears to be enjoying it.

Figuring out the game of spike ball.

The brother-in-law rocking his blue steel with his lovely wife, Dinara.

Trying to herd the youngest Doyles for a group photo.

It was all going so well until the youngest of the bunch, Cullen, staged an angry walk off.

Finally, nailed it! And theres Cullen happily evaluated at the back of the group. Who’s keeping him up there? Well that would be me.

The Middle Aged Doyles. The Husband is 2nd from far right, in the blue shirt.

Representing the Old Doyles.

The gathering of the James’s. Everyone in this photos is called James.

Day 2 of the reunion and the party is moved to the beach.

Cullen was feeling slightly intimidated by the waves, so big cousin Paul offers moral support.

Now its fun.

So hard to see me, my outfit practically blends into the surroundings.

The surf boards are out.

Turns out surfing is one of Cullen’s favorite activities.

A wave to the crowd.

Keane’s turn.

Dinara and the boys, project sand castle.

Some champion digging happening here.

Sand castle building is hard work, make no mistake.

Cullen on a snack break.

Refueled and ready to destroy the hard work of others.

I included this shot cos it shows me in my natural state of photographer with one hand, mother with the other.

So in this photo Cullen made it clear that he was ready for his nap.

No hope of getting Keane to nap, so to force him to rest, we buried him.

Making sure he’s packed in good and tight.

These guys on the hunt for crabs.

Paul and Keane wanted to surf again.

Some beach baseball.

Crab claws.

The Husband and little Paul take the kayak out. Their destination? Dublin, Ireland I believe.

Hooray! Cullen awake from his nap and ready to go.

A garden game of baseball with an oversized bat.

Rules of a toddler are very simple: I see something I want, I take it.

So the momma’s may have sucked down a hard lemonade or 3 before this game of random jumping started.

Contemplating a boat ride.

The end of the day and the boys were out of their swimmies and into their dry clothes. So what do they do? Head right back to the ocean of course.

These 2 little guys hunting for more baby crabs.

“Whats going on here lads?”

Back To Repack

August 2, 2016

We’re back from our Massachusetts adventure and headed into a bit of a whirlwind week as we unpack, plough through a busy work week, then repack in preparation for our trip to Ireland next week. Yes, we are following up one adventure with another. Our intention is to end the summer with a bang! So here we go. Thankfully my kids are well travelled and take all of this airport, airplane stuff in stride, for the most part. I’d be lying if I said there weren’t moments of pure stress, whinging, crying and fighting, but its nothing a YouTube video of someone opening kinder eggs won’t fix, for the 2 year old at least, the 4 year is not so easily distracted.

I’ll get to sharing some photos from our Doyle Family weekend in the next couple of days. For now enjoy this shot of some of the cousins about to take a dip in the ocean.