Friday Finds

So many good things around the internet this week!  I should know – we have been deluged with rain since Wednesday, which has meant lots of time indoors. It’s raining again now, so while I hope for drier weather tomorrow, I’ll get right to the links for your weekend.


A humorous read: A Day At Home with A Newborn.

Our ‘Mommy’ Problem.  “Somehow, as we’ve learned to treat children as people with desires and rights of their own, we’ve stopped treating ourselves and one another as such.”  Does our culture demand that mothers be “all in all the time”?  How does this square up to the “lean in” pressures are well?  There are no right or wrong answers here, but I found this article encapsulated many of the frustrations that mothers face.

Finding your passion:

Great Forbes interview with Ina Garten of Barefoot Contessa.  From nuclear policy analyst to restaurant owner to cookbook author.  I wish I possessed her vision and ability to take that “big leap” from one career to the next.

I am curious if this planner would actually help me identify my passions in life. Also, why can’t I come up with a fascinating idea when I am stumped for “what’s next”?

Expat Life:

Cultural miscommunication, even when you share a common language.

I am a triangle. This blog post has made the rounds in the expat world, but it is still one of the best explanations of what happens when you move overseas and the reverse culture shock if/when you move back.

And my favourite/favorite video of the week: The New York Times 36 Hours in Dublin.  The video shares some of my most loved places in Dublin, from Fallon & Byrne and the Green Hen, to the National Museum.  The video conveys the earnest spirit that so many Irish possess, and makes me proud to live here.

 Have a great weekend!

x Rheagan

Friday Finds

What a week! I went to the Web Summit here in Dublin – the largest tech conference in Europe.  I saw tons of interesting ideas, startups, and speakers.  Now my head is full of information, and I’m trying to sort it all out.  (I wrote a brief post on Wednesday about my initial takeaways.)  While I ponder the future of tech (or other, less-challenging topics), a few links for your weekend:

On Not Owning a House.  As an expat in one of the most expensive property markets around, this post reminded me to be content with what we have, rather than letting the green-eyed monster take over.  Thanks Karen!

46 Things about Mr. Rogers.  Such a sweet list.  My kids now watch Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood, and it reminds me of the wonderful world of Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood that I watched as a child.

This conversation made me laugh. We’re not like this at all! (Thanks, Andrea!)

A few of these toys are making it onto our Christmas list.

The oldest known separate map of Ireland will go for auction at Christie’s next week.  At the time the map was drawn in 1468, Ireland was the westernmost point in the known world.  Fascinating to think about.

Finally, I heard the founder of, Hadi Partovi, speak at the Web Summit this week. I found his story, and his idea – expanding computer science education to all children – very compelling.  They are encouraging teachers, students, and parents to participate in the Hour of Code event  – a one-hour introduction into computer science.  Dec 8-14.  No experience or knowledge of code is necessary!  Have you ever participated?

(I’m actually not a huge fan of technology in the classroom for young children, but I am a fan of logic education and I totally agree with his premise that computer science education is really foundational for ALL careers, not just tech careers.  I’ll probably expand this into a longer post in the future.)

Have a great weekend all!

x Rheagan


Sunday Evening Reading

Hi All!

Did you have a wonderful Halloween?  Any trick-or-treaters show up at your doorstep?  Halloween was a cold and rainy one here, which takes a bit of fun out of trick-or-treating.  The next morning was bright and crisp.  We took a hop-on, hop-off tour of Dublin.  In the three years that we have lived here, we have never taken the tour.  It was fun to be a local tourist for the day.  While I prep for the week ahead, a few links for your enjoyment:

The cost of high-speed internet around the world.  Nice to see that Dublin wasn’t the most expensive, for a change!

We Need to Stop Saying “Babies Ruin Bodies”. I stumbled upon GOOD magazine when we were in the US this past summer. It is a great read.

I loved this interview of Debora Spar, President of Barnard College.

This pictorial of the Indo-European Linguistic Tree is beautiful and incredibly interesting.  For those that are curious, the Irish language is a part of “Gaelic” on this map.

Finally, food for thought: do unequal societies encourage “pushy parenting“?

Have a great weekend!

x Rheagan

Sunday Evening Reading – Bank Holiday edition

The time changed today for the EU, which means the sun will set at 5:00, and rise around 6:30am, for now.  Yesterday, we took advantage of the last late afternoon for awhile, and went for a walk at Phoenix Park.  The trees are changing, and piles of leaves were everywhere.  We have a three day weekend here, so while we enjoy a bit of downtime, here are some interesting links from around the web.

Why Are There Still So Few Women in Science? This article was written over a year ago, but for some reason, I just stumbled upon it this week.  It’s a long one, but well worth your time.  As someone with at least one foot in the STEM fields, the concerns raised about roadblocks to more women in science resonated with me.

Speaking of STEM, I am attending the Web Summit, Nov 4-6.  They just released their schedule of speakers. Are you going?  It’s my first tech conference, and I’m excited!

I love this site, Clementine Daily, for no reason in particular, and everything in general.

A bit of Halloween perspective from Dear Prudence.

And a twitter throwdown between Conan O’brien and Madeleine Albright. “Never get into a word war with a diplomat…”


Sunday Evening Reading

The costume creation was a success…until we arrived at the party in the middle of a rainstorm (ah Ireland).  The costumes held up in the rain, although I am going to fix a few things on Isaac’s costume before Round 2: School Halloween Day.  I have pictures of Liesl and Isaac. – basically running from car to car in “Trunk or Treat”.   All of the pictures of Patrick also have other kids in them, and I don’t want to post them online without permission from other parents.  We have two more Halloween events, so I’m sure I’ll get more pictures between now and then.

While I recover from my weekend of costume building and a Halloween candy-induced coma, some Sunday reading for you.


Oh, how I love McSweeney’s for a snarky dose of satire.

Lists like this one make the rounds every holiday season, but it is a great reminder that some of the best gifts aren’t toys.

Expat Life:

Nine Expats You’ll Meet Abroad.  I know several of these people, and a few more hit a little too close to home!

The Literary United States map.  I found this map fascinating!


We are making this tonight to go with our sliders, because Ireland has no shortage of potatoes…

I hope everyone had a great weekend!

x Rheagan

Friday Finds

I hope everyone has had a lovely week.  It was crazy busy around here, and my first attempt to post 3x in one week.  Hopefully I can keep it up.  The picture above is an old church turned into a Visitors Centre in the middle of Dublin. As the church-going population shrinks, the churches are being converted to other uses. Apparently this one was also slated to become a disco at some point in the past!

Here are a few links from around the internet this week:

I’m sure you have read about the comments Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft made about women asking for a raise. At a conference for women in technology!

Related, I found this article from Forbes about why women leave tech to be very interesting.  Perhaps Mr. Nadella should read it too.

My kids are experts at finding playgrounds while we’re traveling.  I’m just thankful that we haven’t found one of these!

I am NOT a crafty mom – at all, but living in Ireland forces us to find things to do inside when the weather is bad. We made this leaf craft this week while it poured outside.  It was low key, and required virtually no help from me!  Win Win!

Brad and I went on a date last Saturday night to a barbeque restaurant in town, Bison Bar.  Brad thinks Bison comes the closest to Texas barbeque, but I’m torn between it and Pitt Bros.  Either way – we’re always interested in trying out more barbeque joints!

I snapped this picture as we were waiting for our table.


#1day12pics joining @eqedad @@bisondublin for pre-dinner drinks. #datenight #almosthipster

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Friday Finds – Autumnal Equinox Edition

After a long and wonderful Indian summer, we have settled into fall here in Ireland.  The mornings are crisp, the temperatures cooler, and the nights are closing in fast.  The autumnal equinox was earlier this week, and we are losing over 4 minutes per day of daylight right now (30 minutes a week!)  We will continue to lose daylight until the winter solstice, but thankfully, the rate will slow down a bit.  While we savor what is left of of the fall weather, here are a few links for your weekend reading:


Jump into fall with this Butternut Squash dish.  We made it this week.  It’s perfect for cool days, but not too heavy.

We picked some more blackberries. (This is the last time…really…) We didn’t have any sugar, so I used this recipe to make a blackberry-pear crisp.

Expat Life:

I found a great expat blog, Taking Route, this week through a link from a friend of a friend. This post is particularly good.   Looking forward to seeing more from them!

How to Say Goodbye.  One of the things that most impresses me about my kids and this expat life, is how comfortable they are at saying goodbye.  Not that they don’t miss their friends and family in the US.  Not that they don’t get homesick.  They are just much better at living in the moment than adults are.

Other Randomness:

I don’t see much US television, but this video from John Oliver about the Miss America Pageant was hilarious.  Bonus!  He gives a plug for Society of Women Engineers, which could always use more scholarship donations.

At what point does “maintaining your brand” take over your life?  An honest look at blogging at the professional level from the New York Times.


Have a lovely weekend!  See you here on Monday!

x Rheagan

Friday Finds

Is it Friday already?  Where did the week go?  Our car is in the shop, so we’re sticking close to home this weekend, but that’s ok because there is plenty going on around here.  It is still blackberry season.  I think I might be addicted – I snapped this picture last weekend while picking blackberries near our house.


We are trying to eat more lentils, so we made these sloppy joes last week.  I was skeptical, but the recipe was great!

A piece on NPR about why the US refrigerates eggs, and the rest of the world does not.  Here in Ireland, eggs are sold on the shelf, usually near the bread or produce.  When we first moved here, I was CONVINCED we would all get salmonella.  I would buy eggs, and put them directly into the fridge.  However, our fridge is so small, I gave up storing the eggs there.  I just keep them on the counter, and we have never had salmonella. Really going native now!


Would you rather live in the city, the suburbs, or in a rural setting?  Design Mom explores this question, and the comments are fascinating.  I used to think I knew exactly where I wanted to live, but now I’m not so sure. I love the walkability of Europe, and convenient public transit options.  But when I’m in the US, I love the wide open roads, and all the conveniences of suburban life.  Parking! Target! Drive-through Starbucks!


Very tempted to use one of these items, just to see the reaction of other travelers.

Like this author, I try to dress nicely while traveling.  I feel better if I look better, and I find I receive better service as well.   If I can manage to do this on an international flight with three kids in tow, surely everyone else can at least get out of their pajamas!

Have a lovely weekend!

x Rheagan

Friday Finds

Jam Bars

My weekly post of interesting things from around the internet:


It is blackberry season here.  Wild blackberries grow everywhere – on the side of the road, at the local parks and playgrounds.  The plant is quite thorny, and will spread almost anywhere, but the wild blackberries at the end of the summer make amends for its flaws.  We have picked 10+ quarts in the past week.

To make use of all the blackberries, I made blackberry refrigerator jam.

And then I took some the jam and made these amazing jam bars. The bars did not last one evening at our house.

Family & Expat Life:

Whether you’re Catholic or not, this is hilarious. 5 Things You Should Have Done in Premarital Counseling.

As an expat, the transition back into your ‘adopted’ country is never easy.  This article gets that.

In & Around Dublin:

Have you heard of The Caterpillar?  It is a magazine of stories, art and poetry for kids.  I hope to buy one this weekend.

After Wednesday’s post, a friend (Thanks Caroline!) told me about the Dublin Coffee & Tea Festival next weekend. I am tempted!   Kingfisher Tea, owned by another friend of mine, will be at the festival.  If you want to win tickets to the festival, pop over to their Facebook page.


Have a lovely weekend everyone.  We have a family fun day with the local GAA club, college football watching (gotta give sports on both sides of the Atlantic their due), and I’m hoping to add a few more features to the blog.  See you on Monday.

x Rheagan



Friday Finds

It was a busy week here, with plenty of things going on. We had one day of beautiful weather and I snapped this pic of Clery’s department store on O’Connell Street in Dublin. It was a day where the weather made it feel like the world was full of possibility. Alas, we were back to lashing wind and rain today.

My weekly post of interesting things from around the internet:


Brad brought back a Williams-Sonoma catalog from NYC for me to drool over look at.  We made this recipe, Braised Chicken with Olives and Capers, featured in the catalog.  So good!

Have you ever made your own Italian sausage?  It’s hard to find here, but I use this recipe to make my own.

This review of The French Laundry made me laugh.  I think they channeled my 4-year old.



A lovely article from the New York Times about one of my favourite streets in Dublin, Drury Street.

What do you think of “Knee Defenders“?


Life in Ireland:

How to offend people at your new job?  Ask this woman.

A few more reasons to visit Ireland! Thanks Mico!


Have a lovely weekend everyone.  It’s Labor Day weekend in the US, but a regular 2-day weekend here. See you on Monday.

x Rheagan