Category: Parenting

Treasuring Advent’s simple pleasures

My late father never got into too much of a fuss about Christmas. While the rest of us were dashing around like headless chickens, he always seemed to be his usual serene self. Whether his Christmas presents cost the earth or the offering was just a humble pair of socks or a scarf, his reaction…

Dad’s Diary

“Tell me a story about when you were a boy.” That’s the unchanging instruction I have received from my eight-year-old boy at bedtime for weeks now. At first, I thought this was brought on by my father’s colourful stories of his childhood in Ballyvaughan, where fact and fiction intermingle fantastically. One recent story was about…

Family News and Events

Sugar club screens Disney classics Running up to Christmas, the Sugar Club on Dublin’s Leeson Street is showing a series of Disney films, including such Pixar classics as The Lion King, which shows this weekend. The ‘Disney Xmas Classics’ series runs at 3pm every Saturday, and is a must for Disney lovers of all ages.…

Faith in the Family

I can feel the Christmas crazy beginning to descend. I have had great plans about being organised. I actually bought a couple of presents about six weeks ago – but then it all went pear-shaped again and I find myself with a list of things to do and a shorter Advent to do them in. Advent…

Making perfect jumpers for your Christmas tree

Children’s Corner   Advent begins this weekend and it’s officially time to embrace the Christmas spirit, starting by donning your Christmas jumper. Each year, Christmas jumpers get wackier and more distinctive. Yet sometimes it’s still hard to find the perfect jumper of your dreams. It’s very easy to upcycle an old plain jumper and decorate…

Dad’s Diary

I believe that viruses are the most powerful non-human creatures on the planet. I’ve never had to take a day off work in order to recover from an attack by a bear, shark, lion or wolf. Only viruses have the power to so casually disrupt our lives. Any large, fang-toothed creature you might think of has…

Pressures to be the perfect mother

Science of life   Motherhood should be a very special time filled with joy and love but many new mothers can labour under such a burden of expectations and pressure to perform to certain standards that they end up feeling bad about perceived underperformance or failure. This phenomenon is very marked in America and is…

Faith in the family

November is not my favourite month. I don’t mind the darker evenings so much but the prospect of walking the dog on cold, dark mornings does little to cheer me. The new year will be well on its way before I find myself walking in the light again. That is not a great prospect but…

Dad’s Diary

One eccentric feature of parenthood is that your holiday dates are chosen for you by the Department of Education. Left to their own devices, few parents would spontaneously elect upon the dreary weeks of late October as the ideal season for a family holiday. Yet we must make the most of what we are given,…