Posts Tagged ‘Birr Castle’

That folks was the name (hashtag) that took over our lives when we had the bloggers here on a recent weekend trip.  I’d had a little bit of a rant about the organising of the trip, but ultimately I believe it went well.

This blog post is really going to be about ‘thank you’.  Thank you to all who were involved in one way or another.  It could not have happened without your support.

Thank you to Alfie who thought the idea of a bloggers’ tour was a good one, and who persisted with me in convincing Mid Ireland Tourism to go for it.  We love the area we live in, and want to help in any way we can to promote it and generate a better income for all others who live here.



Thank you to the bloggers who agreed to travel (at their own expense) and give of their time and expertise to promote the area.

Accommodation Providers:

I struggled a bit organising the accommodation but in the end “it all worked out on the night”.  Thank you to


Perhaps I should have tried to visit less places – there were times when we were a bit rushed – but I was so enthusiastic to show off as much as possible!  I just wanted to give everyone a taste of what is on offer – and, secretly, hoped it would tempt everyone to come back and visit again!

Goody Bags and Tastings:

I really did ‘step outside the box’ for this, and major thanks must go to all the local producers who I asked and who without fail came up trumps.

A special ‘thank you’ to Ron Wise who came to my rescue and made a delicious birthday cake for Regula who was celebrating her birthday that weekend.

And lastly, but definitely not least, mega thanks to Siobhan and David at Le Bouchon Restaurant in Portumna who stepped into the breech and produced the most delicious picnic lunch for us to take on the mini-cruise on Sunday.

That’s it folks…. I will, of course, be sharing blog posts as others write them…. for more detail on what we did and how the weekend went check out

Of course, if you are in the midlands, and on social media…. we’d love to see you using the #MagicalMidlands hashtag…. let’s keep the momentum going 🙂


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Autumn colour in Birr Castle

Autumn in Birr Castle

Autumn in Birr Castle

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I’ve been planning this post for months, and for some reason never got around to sharing it!

However, what better time to do so than during National Tree Week.

National Tree Week is when we in Ireland celebrate our trees, something we should probably have thought about doing a long time ago.  Only 11% of this island is planted with trees, compared to an average of 40% in the rest of Europe.

A mix of trees line our driveway

A mix of trees line our driveway

One of the things that sold this house to us in the first place was the trees.  We are so lucky to have such beautiful trees around the house.  The Grandad of the previous owners was very forward thinking for his day, and planted lots of trees.  We have no photographs of how the house looked, but have been told there was an arbour at the back of the house, and that there was lots of bamboo planted on the southern side to protect from the wind.

My favourite tree... a lovely cool place to have a swing in hot weather :)

My favourite tree… a lovely cool place to have a swing in hot weather 🙂

We have continued the tradition planting trees every year…. and boy were we glad that we have been doing so this winter, as so far we’ve lost 6 rowan trees, our last crab apple tree and a really old plum tree.  We weren’t the only ones that lost trees in the area… the wonderful poplar in the grounds of Birr Castle that had been nominated for European Tree of the Year succumbed to the weather too.


This Linden Tree we’ve had to have pollarded.  There is a huge split in the trunk, but hopefully if we can continue to have it pollarded regularly it will last for a good few years.  It is a beauty.

Last year we took part in the Plant a Million Trees in a Day initiative….and hope to do so again this year.

Back trees

The view from my kitchen sink 🙂

We all need to cherish our trees.  They are such an integral and critical part of the eco system, without trees we are nothing.  They are our lungs.

Do you have a favourite tree?



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