Renewal

35

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Every now and then I feel the need to recharge my batteries.

This is one of those times.

IMG_8690I have, once again, over-stretched myself across social media platforms, as well as working every day in the gardens and continuing to refresh and update the interior of Bealtaine Cottage…and all my own work, unaided.

IMG_8696My main work should be focused on writing, as this is my income, but, more often than not, I allow my energies to flow in too many directions.

IMG_8698So, for the next month, I am away from social media, concentrating my efforts on this website and YouTube channel instead.

IMG_8694All the little finishing tasks that are outstanding in the cottage will, hopefully, get finished!

IMG_8681I managed to finally hand-sew the curtain for underneath the worktop in the kitchen and hang it.

IMG_8702This week has been spent working in the Lughnasadh Garden and tidying up around the upper woodland.

IMG_8700I even managed a trip into town and to the market…not often enough I think, for I do need to get out more as I am becoming too much of a recluse!

IMG_8707Of course it is hard to leave  Bealtaine Cottage at present as the colours of Autumn are simply divine!

IMG_8711Often times I feel there is a constant pull from FaceBook and Twitter, but then this is the clever way both are set up…to keep drawing one back!

IMG_8708This website is my first love and will remain so, above all other aspects of the internet, for it is where so many discovered Bealtaine Cottage and fell in love with this land as I have done.

IMG_8712It is where I found community and support. It is also a safe place to post all my photographic work, on this website which hosts thousands of images of Bealtaine Cottage and Woodland Sanctuary.

IMG_8714It is a labour of love and devotion to Mother Earth, for sometimes I am at the computer for over an hour just uploading the images to the website…I don’t have internet, just a hotspot on my phone!

IMG_8715Much of social media is so fast-flowing that images get drowned in the tide of ‘stuff!’

IMG_8716All of the images I capture on camera add up to a tiny fraction of what I want to photograph.

IMG_8727These are then sifted down to what I upload onto this website.

IMG_8732I am on a daily quest to present the beauty of Mother Earth here at Bealtaine Cottage to the world.

IMG_8717IMG_8719IMG_8720IMG_8731So, for the next twenty eight days or so, a lunar month, I shall be posting here on my website and YouTube.

Touching base can be such a relief!

Spiritual Living

8

Missy Cat is not very well. As we wait for tests to come back from the Vet, and hoping against hope that all will be well, the reality is quite different.
For the time, thoughts of loss are pushed to one side as we embrace the joy of a much loved Missy Cat…

It’s at times like these that thoughts of a very spiritual kind take hold. Loss and the fear of loss can do that. Isn’t it amazing how love can get right into the recesses of one’s very soul?

“What greater gift than the love of a cat.”
― Charles Dickens

“I love cats because I enjoy my home; and little by little, they become its visible soul.”
― Jean Cocteau

Gardening, planting, chopping wood and all those everyday little chores helps to take one’s mind away from sad thoughts!

“Holding this soft, small living creature in my lap this way, though, and seeing how it slept with complete trust in me, I felt a warm rush in my chest. I put my hand on the cat’s chest and felt his heart beating. The pulse was faint and fast, but his heart, like mine, was ticking off the time allotted to his small body with all the restless earnestness of my own.” 
― Haruki Murakami

Abandoned Cottages in the West of Ireland

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Wild Orchids are just some of the Wild Flowers at Bealtaine Smallholding today.

Walking the land it is amazing to see so many and such variety of Nature’s Bounty.

The leaves of an old Fern are just starting to unfurl.

Some of these Ferns growing along the bank at the back of the cottage are huge, denoting their age…10years and more!

The ruins of an old, old cottage on the hill behind this smallholding.

There are a few of these ancient remnants of a once much larger community of souls scattered on the hill of Ballyfermoyle.

Many of the lives born in these small cottages grew up and left Ireland.

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Many emigrated to countries like Australia and the U.S.A.

The remnants of their lives are often dug up here at Bealtaine and sites all over the west of Ireland.

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It might be that someone reading this blog is a descendant of a Ballyfermoyle emigrant.

There is a sadness around these ruins and many like them scattered the length and breadth of this land…encapsulated in the small clumps of daffodils which re-appear each Spring, reminiscent of the loving hands that planted them deep in the soil around their modest home.

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These little flowers would have been the nearest the dweller would have got to gardening…their lives taken up with the burden of work to eke out a modest living.

Ash trees and Ivy grow up the inside of the gable wall of an old, stone cottage.

Large families of up to twenty children lived in tiny two bedroom cottages.

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A woman I once interviewed had a family of fifteen children, born over the course of sixteen consecutive years…that is almost one child every year!

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It is most likely, if your name is of Irish origin, that a home like the one above would have housed your ancestors…they would have, at least, looked out upon the great natural beauty that would have surrounded them and mourned this loss in their adopted country…