Tuesday, August 13, 2013


Gobizprint.com has launched the facility on its website for people to design their own artwork and have it submitted to a print work flow. In the coming months Gobizprint.com will roll out further upgrades and functionality for clients who avail of online design services.

Gobizprint.com now has detailed listings of its pricing and its product range.

Gobizprint.com are continuing to grow in the Irish printing market supplying both cold and heat set printing products.

Gobizprint.com have also added to their printing a full design service and a data driven direct mail/door to door distribution service.

For more information on gobizprint.com designs service, printing or direct mail contact us via email info@gobizprint.com

The Health Hut (thehealthhut.ie)

thehealthhut.ie is a new online store based in Dublin Ireland,  thehealthhut.ie supplies sports nutrition products and accessories into the Irish health and fitness market.

The thehealthhut.ie's nutritional products and accessories cover a range of health and fitness activities such as weight loss, weight lifting, athletics, general health and fitness, football, rugby, hot yoga e.t.c

The thehealthhut.ie is dedicated to aiding athletes/persons in all health and sporting activities to acquire the ultimate in nutrition for the highest levels of performance.

Sellers who sell direct to the public in business such as gyms or shops can contact the thehealthhut.ie for details of their retail pricing.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Those Three Little Words

Those three little words…
My eldest son is preparing for his leaving cert at the moment and I find myself uttering three little words in various configurations, but all meaning the same thing:  Have you studied?  Are you studying? Have you started? Have you finished? Are you ok? How’s the stress? How’s the studying? Is that it? Is there more? Will you study? Etc, etc etc.  I feel like a broken record.  I feel like I’m creating unnecessary stress for him, but at the same time I also feel as a parent it’s my job to make sure he is at least taking out the books and even ‘pretending’ to study.  Then I feel better!  But its not really anything to do with me, as I have told him repeatedly, I already did ‘my time’.  Looking at the amount of work my son has to do however does not feel familiar to me.  It’s over twenty years since I did any state exams and it appears a lot has changed in that time.  For anyone who has any sort of difficulty it must be an absolute nightmare to try and remember, recall and regurgitate the amount of information now expected.  My heart goes out to my son every time I see his stressed face and his sunken shoulders.  Like many of his classmates, the final push is now on to try and remember as much as possible before the end of May.  So revision is the word of the moment.  But if I was to ask him his word of the moment, it can be taken from the following list: stress, anxiety, pressure, tension, worry, burden, fear and apprehension.  As an adult its much easier to cope with all the above, but our young adults are expected to cope with the strains and stresses of growing up at the same time as sitting what for some of them is one of the most important exams of their life.  Considering competition is so tough nowadays for college places, it is no wonder that some of our kids are finding it really tough…  I’m finding it tough and I’m just a parent watching this.  But I will continue to ask:  have you studied, are you studying, are you finished, until the very last exam is over and he is actually finished…..  That’s my job!

From three little words to a cosy Threesome!
When my mother first told me that it was suggested on a website that teenagers should try a threesome to spice up their sex life, you could have knocked me over with a feather.  At first I thought she was having a laugh and my mother is a septuagenarian so it’s not the kind of joke she’d normally pull.  When I realized she was serious, the next thought that came to mind was whoever was responsible for posting that obviously has no teenagers…  But then I decided that the best thing to do was check out the content and context of the actual article for myself.  I found it on Spunout.ie, but instead of the slant I expected to find, I found instead a website offering advice and wisdom to teenagers that they might not get at home.  The way in which the articles are structured and written far from being an encouragement to teenagers offers in an intelligent and perceptive manner all kinds of advice for those teenagers who are already sexually active.  Not what I was expecting considering the uproar in the media!!  As a parent of three teenagers, it is very much to the forefront of my mind that the time will come and probably very soon when my own children will become sexually active.  The fact I got them this far in life without that happening I feel is an achievement (that is as far as I know of course).  The world my children occupy as teenagers is very different to the one where I grew up; I have spoken about that before.  Their ease with technology and their constant access to it probably has a lot to do with the prevalence of misinformation out there among teenagers.  So as a parent it is my job to correct that misinformation and also to try and temper their curiosity with some sort of moral fortitude.  Almost everything is discussed in our house, including sex.  I am always available to them to discuss any issues they may be having.  If they don’t open the dialogue, then I do.  I find however, I get a lot of information from their friends when they visit our house and that is why I have a very open door policy at my home.  But for some parents it’s not easy to discuss sex with their offspring.  It is something that you nearly have to force yourself to do; to get over any embarrassment you may have. When I was growing up sex was certainly not discussed in my house, it wasn’t the done thing.  So what would we rather therefore, for our teens to get their information from other teens or to have access to a site like spunout where the information is given is a safe and measured way?  It is beyond contestation that our teens are engaging in sexual activity of all kinds at an earlier and earlier age.  So do us adults bury our heads in the sand and refuse to acknowledge this fact, or do we cope with their world in a meaningful and determined manner. I would rather do the latter while at the same time trying to stall that initial foray into the adult world of sexual activity.  But for those who have already started, the site www.spunout.ie dispels the myths, spells out the dangers and above all urges caution to teens who access them for information.  Now, isn’t it better they get it from somewhere they and us adults can trust right?  I would also say this site is full of information on other topics too, dealing with exam stress, dealing with loss, dealing with depression; in all, its better to look before you judge and in this case, I think this particular article has been blown out of proportion; either that or those interpreting it still live in the dark ages.

Monday, March 25, 2013

You asked what Mr Varadkar

You asked What?

I read with interest in one of the weekend papers that Leo Varadkar was disgusted with Ryanairs Michael O’Leary (what’s new) rejecting his request for a one million €0 seat sale to be given away by Ryanair.  This just happens to be the amount of people they were hoping to confirm would come to Ireland for the various Gathering events organised throughout the country.  Now, call me foolish, but to ask any commercial organisation to offer up 1 million seats for free is just ludricious.  If Mr Varadkar is so desperate, why did he not ask Aer Lingus?  Why ask Ryanair?   The question I would like answered is ‘did Leo Varadkar ask Aer Lingus and what was their answer to the same request’?  I don’t understand any Minister asking a company that makes its revenue from selling a service to give that service to a substantial proportion of travellers for nothing!!!  Talk about not living in the real world! 


OH my pet hate……

I don’t hate driving.  It’s a necessary evil if you ask me.  But it’s becoming more difficult in this day and age to drive safely, not because my driving skills are called into question, but because there appears to be a huge amount of lunatics out there on the road.  I’ve talked about this before; the ones who think their indicator is a magic wand, instantly creating the right amount of space for them to move safely from one lane to the other, irrespective of the actual space available.  There also seems to be lane hoppers out there who have little or no regard for the motorists ahead or behind them.  And then there’s the cyclists; my real pet hate.  I am not against cycling on our roads per se, what I am against is the vast amount of cyclists out there who neither seem to understand the rules of the road nor follow them.  If I hit a cyclist, I am to blame irrespective of what they have done to cause the accident.  Some cyclists (I can’t say all here, although my experience certainly suggests MOST) don’t obey any rules other than what they want to observe.  ‘Some’ cyclists go through pedestrian lights, red lights, try to pass on the right or left even if my cars indicator shows that’s where I’m turning.  They try to squeeze past my car on the right or left against oncoming traffic and bang my car as if I am to blame because there’s not enough room for them to do this safely in my opinion.  These are on roads where no cycle path is evident, present or marked.  And don’t get me started on the cyclists who dress all in black with not a light or reflective item in sight.  If I drove my car and it was not fit for purpose, I wouldn’t pass the NCT.  Why is there no equivalent NCT for bikes?  Why is it not mandatory for cyclists to dress to be seen especially in these dark days and their bikes contain reflective lights at the front and back?  I understand that cyclists have a right to road space and I drive around them accordingly, they are much more vulnerable than I am, tucked up safely in my metal cage (car).  But I just wish cyclists would realise that they can be splattered in an instant and cycle accordingly, following rules that will keep them safe.    There is an unmistakable need for some sort of code of conduct for cyclists out there and if they don’t follow it, for some sort of punishment!  Either that, or get off the road……

Saturday, December 8, 2012

What Christmas Means to Me!

 I would like to take this opportunity before the big day to wish each and every one of you a happy Christmas season.  I know I am certainly looking forward to the time off and then hopefully a better year to come in 2013.  It is always with a bit of nostalgia I face into this time of year.  Like a lot of families around the country, half of my siblings have emigrated, so this time of year, I can be quite melancholy with plenty of reminiscing of times past being done.   Like most of you readers out there (over a certain age), we didn’t have an abundance of money when I was growing up but somehow my parents succeeded in making Christmas a wonderful time of year for us six children.  In a lot of ways we were shielded from the financial worries my parents may have had and we never felt like we were deprived in any way.  Mind you our wants and wish lists in those days were certainly less expensive to fulfil than those of children now-a-days.  When I talk to my parents about their Christmases as children, funnily, they tell similar stories; theirs however are ones of extreme poverty.  Both my parents grew up in the ‘40’s and remember quite clearly the effect the Second World War and its aftermath had on this country.    Again however, they never hankered after anything; their wants and needs were much simpler then and both their parents, my grandparents, made a huge effort at this time of year to have plenty of food on the table, coal for the fire and a gift for each of them and all their siblings under the Christmas tree.  Both my parents come from large families as I do myself and for both them and indeed me, Christmas was more about getting together and spending time with each other than what was under the tree on Christmas morning.  We have just had another savage budget and I am sure there are plenty of people out there who feel they have little to celebrate or look forward to in the coming year.   Money is scarce at the moment for many families, but it’s not the first time in this country’s history that money is scarce!  All I have to do to remember that is think back on the stories of my parents’ childhoods, or indeed my own.  Things changed and they can and will change again, we just have to hold on and get on with it as best we can.  The memories of my childhood Christmases are ones I will treasure forever, especially now that most of my siblings don’t make it home for Christmas.  So for me, memories of Christmases past when we were all together are most poignant. There are certain things that are quintessentially Christmas for me; I remember the roaring fire my father used to keep going all Christmas Eve night, so that when us kids all got up at 5am in the morning the house downstairs would be warm (no central heating in those days).  I remember the big turkey my mother used to cook and how every single morsel of meat would be picked off the bones so there would be enough to feed all eight of us. After that then I remember the wonderful Turkey soup my mother would make with the bones on Stephens’s day so she could take the day off from cooking.  She used to spend days beforehand precooking some of the vegetables because in those days the hobs and cookers seemed to be smaller!  She’d prepare what she could beforehand so that on Christmas morning she could have time to sit and watch all us kids play with our new toy, while accepting yet another ornament or candle sometimes bought from the ‘rag and bone’ man months before…..

I remember being dressed up in our Sunday best and going to Christmas morning mass in the local church and unless you were early it was most difficult to get a seat; the church would be packed to the rafters.  If you were really lucky, you’d get a seat beside the radiator so you could be a bit warm.  In those days the church always seemed to be ice cold.   And then it was home to eat the feast; or what we perceived to be a feast.  There would be turkey and ham and lots and lots of vegetables and for afters homemade trifle and pudding with custard, yum!  After dinner, we’d all pile into the sitting room and there always seemed to be bodies everywhere as girlfriends and boyfriends would arrive and we’d watch the Big Christmas Day movie all together.  It always seemed, in my memory anyway, to be the newest Superman or Indiana Jones movie or indeed the old favourite James Bond!  And then when we felt we couldn’t eat another bite, my mother would bring out the box of Seasons Greetings sweets and we’d munch on toffees for the afternoon!  Simple memories like this, is what Christmas means to me!  More than anything, Christmas for me was a time when we would just enjoy being all together and happy.  It was a time when my parents both got to take a well-earned break, my mother from cooking and cleaning and my father from work and we had him for days on end which for us was absolutely wonderful.  It’s the simple pleasures we need to remember, cherish and pass on to our children.  It shouldn’t be about the latest techno toy, and it’s up to us parents to pass on those memories to our children while making memories for them to cherish when they grow up.  So with that in mind, I wish you all a peaceful, happy Christmas surrounded by your nearest and dearest!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Not just a Cranky Old Man!

 When appearances can be deceiving!

When an old man died in the geriatric ward of a nursing home in an Australian country town, it was believed that he had nothing left of any value.  Later, when the nurses were going through his meagre possessions, they found this poem. Its quality and content so impressed the staff that copies were made and distributed to every nurse in the hospital. One nurse took her copy to Melbourne. The old man's sole bequest to posterity has since appeared in the Christmas editions of magazines around the country and is appearing in magazines for Mental Health. A slide presentation has also been made based on his simple, but eloquent, poem. And this old man, with nothing left to give to the world, is now the author of this 'anonymous' poem winging across the Internet.
this was posted to my facebook and really did touch my heart.  I decided to share it with you all in the hope that it gives us all a better understanding of what our community of elderly may feel as we watch them or treat them with unsympathetic eyes...

Cranky Old Man.....
What do you see nurses, what do you see?
What are you thinking, when you're looking at me?
A cranky old man, not very wise,
Uncertain of habit with faraway eyes?
Who dribbles his food and makes no reply,
when you say in a loud voice, 'I do wish you'd try!'
Who seems not to notice the things that you do.
And forever is losing a sock or shoe?
Who, resisting or not lets you do as you will,
With bathing and feeding the long day to fill?
Is that what you're thinking, is that what you see?
Then open your eyes, nurse; .You're not looking at me.
I'll tell you who I am, sa I sit here so still,
As I do at your bidding, as I eat at your will.
I'm a small child of Ten, with a father and mother,
Brothers and sisters  who love one another
A young boy of Sixteen with wings on his feet
Dreaming that soon now a lover he'll meet.
A groom soon at Twenty my heart gives a leap.
Remembering, the vows that I promised to keep.
At Twenty-Five, now I have young of my own.
Who need me to guide and a secure happy home.
A man of Thirty ; My young now grown fast,
Bound to each other with ties that should last.
At Forty, my young sons have grown and are gone,
But my woman is beside me to see I don't mourn.
At Fifty, once more, Babies play 'round my knee,
Again, we know children My loved one and me.
Dark days are upon me My wife is now dead.
I look at the future I shudder with dread.
For my young are all rearing young of their own.
And I think of the years And the love that I've known.
I'm now an old man and nature is cruel.
It's jest to make old age look like a fool.
The body, it crumbles, grace and vigour, depart.
There is now a stone where I once had a heart.
But inside this old carcass, a young man still dwells,
And now and again my battered heart swells
I remember the joys I remember the pain.
And I'm loving and living life over again.
I think of the years, all too few gone too fast.
And accept the stark fact that nothing can last.
So open your eyes, people open and see.
Not a cranky old man . Look closer  -  see ME!!


Not only did this poem touch my heart, but someone posted a reply by a nurse on the same site and I have to say that too evoked a very emotional response.  It is so apt, so touching and so endearing, that I felt it was necessary to put these two side by side.

A Nurses reply - - by Liz Hogben
What do we see, you ask, what do we see?  Yes, we are thinking when looking at thee.
We may seem to be hard when we hurry and fuss but there's many of you and too few of us.

We would like far more time to sit by you and talk to bath you and feed you and help you to walk.
To hear of your lives and the things you have done your childhood, your husband, your daughter, your son.

But time is against us, there's too much to do - Patients too many and nurses too few
We grieve when we see you so sad and alone with nobody near you, no friends of your own
We feel all your pain, and know of your fear that nobody cares now your end is so near.

But nurses are people with feelings as well and when we're together you'll often hear tell
Of the dearest old Gran in the very end bed and the lovely old Dad and the things that he said
We speak with compassion and love, and feel sad when we think of your lives and the joy that you've had.

When the time has arrived for you to depart you leave us behind with an ache in our heart
when you sleep the long sleep, no more worry or care there are other people, and we must be there.  So please understand if we hurry and fuss. There are many of you and too few of us!!

Friday, November 16, 2012

There's no more emotive an issue than abortion

There's no more emotive an issue than abortion!

In the past week, we have been privvy to 'some' information about the young Indian woman who lost her battle for life in a Galway hospital, when a miscarriage caused complications and resulted in her dying from Sepsis and E-Coli.  As has been stated on radio and in the papers numerous times, we (Joe and Joan Public) are not in possession of all the facts and therefore cannot really make an informed decision as to what did or didn' t happen.  Cold comfort that is not to her family and husband who now not only grieves the loss of his unborn child, but also of his wife...
If there is any lesson to be learned from this it is that we need clarity where medical abortions are concerned.
But its not only that!  As a woman and mother, I am absolutely torn between the choices facing some women out there.  As a woman I understand and support everyones right to choose.  As a mother, I understand what can result from a pregnancy carried to term.  The fact of the matter however is I CHOSE!  I chose what was right for me given the circumstances of my life.  While I might not agree with someone else's choice, am I right to deny them the right to choose what is right for them.  Simply put the answer is NO! 
Getting into an argument about what constitues life and when is a feotus actually a baby is an argument that is meant to cloud, confuse and evoke an emotional response.  It is commendable that those who stand up for rights have behind them the courage of their convictions, but unless a woman is free to make a choice that is right for her; her rights are being ignored and that in my opinion is not right.  We all live with the consequences of our actions; we should not be forced to live with those consequences when they don't reflect our own right to choose.