Sunday, 3 February 2013

Our New Blog

Come and visit us at ...

Thimblebutton Tales!

You'll be very welcome!

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Saturday, 2 February 2013

We Are Moving!

We will be moving shortly to a new blog!  The details will be posted here, once the new blog is up and running.

After some thinking and talking, we've decided that we want to change direction a little.  We've really enjoyed a whole year of "A Tranquil Heart", but we feel we want to move towards a blog that has a cosier, more lighthearted feel.  I won't be posting quite so frequently, but there will be lots of recipes, crafts, photographs, book reviews and more, all with a simple, homespun theme.  It's a bit of a change of direction which we hope will reflect the lives we lead, and also what matters most to us - our family and home.  We've made this decision in the wake of a few "real life" changes - my health preventing me from being able to be quite as busy as I'd like just now, a birthday, and a return to the Church of our childhoods which has taken our faiths in a new but very familiar direction which we are all really enjoying.  It's all good - my aches and pains aside, though in a way, it's just my body telling me to slow down, which is no bad thing - but we felt we'd like to make a new start with the blog too, to mark the beginning of a new way of doing things at home.

We hope you'll want to visit us there, so we'll be posting the details of the new blog once it's ready for readers!

Back soon

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Friday, 25 January 2013

Happy Birthday!

File:Blue candles on birthday cake.jpg

Source for this image here.

Sala biano divus, amaro rikano chai!  Muro kuchi chavo, ami komes tu.  Deshtayenja kennaw - kai kel e chiro nash?  Tu kel sawmendi but buno.  Ach tevel, Tikino.

"Some hae meat and cannae eat
Some would eat that want it
But we hae meat and we can eat
Sae let the Lord be thankit"
Robert Burns

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Thursday, 24 January 2013


File:German Chocolate Cake.jpg

Source for this image here.

The next day or two I shall be busy - preparing for a special occasion!  Yes, it's Cubby Bear's birthday, and we will be celebrating it tomorrow with not one, but two special meals!  One of which will indeed be featuring a chocolate cake - though perhaps not quite as fancy looking as this one!

It will also be the first birthday of our blog soon as well!  To mark the occasion I'm going to be making a few tweaks to it, and hopefully making it a little more interesting and inspiring.  Originally we had themed posts for several days of the week, however I did begin to find that this was sometimes quite restrictive, and meant I had to tailor what I wanted to write about according to the constraints of the theme for the day.  As the blog has evolved over the year it's been running, I've found I prefer to have a freer hand in how I write my posts.  But now I'm starting to feel that I'd like to focus on some different themes again, without necessarily making this into a weekly event.   I'd also like to be able to put up my own photographs again.  When I started this blog, we had a different laptop - a wee "net book" which was easy to use and had a webcam that took reasonable pictures.  Our new laptop is much larger and heavier, and that means it's more difficult for me to use it to take pictures, unless I get some help holding and adjusting it while I'm pointing it at whatever I want to take a picture of.  I know that blogs are more interesting to read and look at if they have photographs, and while we're not at all bothered about how many people visit our blog, it does matter to us that those that do, have an enjoyable and hopefully enriching experience!

So for our blog's "first birthday" I'm going to make some small adjustments so that hopefully it will be more user-friendly, and enjoyable to read.

In the meantime, I'm off to make a cake!

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Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Blackbird's Song

File:Turdus merula1843.jpg

Source for this image here.

How lovely to hear the blackbirds again!  While the weather was so bad, there was barely any birdsong outside our home, despite all the trees that they must have had to shelter in.  Today, the air is warmer, everywhere the snow is melting, and the wee garden birds seem to know that spring is on its way.  I love to hear the blackbirds especially - to me, they remind me more than any bird of the early spring evenings, just as the days begin to get a little longer.
The blackbird's song it takes me far away
To northern Land and to a distant day
His kin birds sang all day until sundown
In leafy groves just out of Millstreet Town.

A blackbird piping on a blackwood tree
Awake the nostalgic memories in me
Again I walk the lush green fields in Spring
And hear the wild birds on the hedgerows sing.

Bluebells bloom by the hedge by the bohreen
And cock pheasant often heard though seldom seen
In the knee high rushes clap his wings and crow
By their calls and songs the birds you get to know.

The distance from the home fields may be long
But whenever the migrant hear the blackbird's song
He or she will see the lushness brought by rain
And walk through fields where wild flowers bloom again.

To it the blackbird's song has a nostalgic ring
It takes the migrant to a distant Spring
And though far distant the Homeland near 'twould seem
And the dipper's song is echoing in the stream.

I thought this thing nostalgia I'd outgrown
But the blackbird's song it carries me back home
And I walk the high fields where I walked before
Up to the hill through the wood at Claramore 

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Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Spring Cleaning!

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Source for this image here.

The snow has begun to melt a little today - and I'm not sorry!  Although it looked beautiful when it was freshly fallen, by now it has started to look very dingy and slushy and dirty - not pretty at all.  It's wet and cold and difficult to walk in, and we're all quite glad that it's finally begun to beat a retreat.  Papa Bear hopes to be back at work soon - which I'm not so happy about - but it will be nice to get back to our usual routines.

Monday, 21 January 2013

Spicy Red Lentil Soup

File:Dried red lentil.JPG

Source for this image here.

Another recipe!  This one is great for cold wintry days like the ones we are experiencing here just now.  There's no let-up in the snow and frost.  It snowed heavily again last night - covering up all the footprints that had been left in the snow that was already there.  All along the gutter that runs the whole length of our apartment block there are icicles - they look so beautiful, but lethal too!  We have to hurry in and out of our front door for fear of one of them falling on us!  Papa Bear is yet unable to work - which is so lovely, as it means I have him at home with me!  Thank the Lord it doesn't matter that he cannot work - that's one of the best things about being employed by your older brother in the family business!  We have been able to really relax and enjoy this unexpected wintery break.  The snow looks very pretty, but it is difficult to walk in and giving me a lot of extra pain with my arthritis.  Therefore I have been staying indoors whilse the others go out - and on Sunday I made this soup for our midday meal.