Happy New Year. And it sure is a happy one for us. Since we discovered these warm milk supplements we’ve been sleeping great in our house.

If you’ve missed out on my previous sleep related posts you may be interested in checking them out: https://yvonnemcevaddy.wordpress.com/2012/06/07/sleep-who-needs-it-anyway/, https://yvonnemcevaddy.wordpress.com/2013/02/08/sleep-glorious-sleep/,  https://yvonnemcevaddy.wordpress.com/2013/02/11/sleep-glorious-sleep-part-2/, https://yvonnemcevaddy.wordpress.com/2013/06/19/sleep-glorious-sleep-part-3/


To recap, we’d been having a rough time with our daughter’s sleep. We started keeping a food diary while giving her camomile tea, and the homeopathic remedy Chamomilla 3oc, and flower remedy Night Essence. Through a process of elimination we discovered that it is e-numbers that cause her nightmares and the artificial sweetener, aspartame, that causes her to wake up during the night and stay awake for 2 hours.

After changing her diet we took her off the Chamomilla tablets and Night Essence. However, it’s impossible to avoid e-numbers completely. Monday to Friday her diet is controlled, but on the weekends there are parties, and of course there is some eating out, and even through strict diligence the occasional e-number slips through.

We’ve discovered that the warm milk supplements combat the effects of the e-numbers, but not the aspartame, so we’ve been able to ease up on her diet a little. But we still eliminate e-numbers where possible.

We’ve just gone through a tough couple of weeks where she’s been on antibiotics and steroids. A lot of medicines contain aspartame and e-numbers, and since the milk tablets, as she calls them, don’t work for aspartame, we’ve had quite a number of wakeful nights, but soon she’ll be back to full sleeps again, and so will we.

As an added bonus, we’ve noticed that our daughter is growing more now that she’s sleeping properly.

Please share this post, as I want to help as many parents and children as possible to get the sleep they need and deserve.


Christmas is my favourite time of year. The cold, crisp weather, snuggling up in front of a fire, the Christmas preparations, festive cheer. I love it all. We’ve established a few Yuletide traditions in our family over the years, and it wouldn’t be Christmas without them.

Christmas songs go on in our house on the 1st of November. As soon as the Halloween decorations come down, Bing Crosby can be heard singing White Christmas. I know this goes against the grain, but I’m extremely Christmassy.

Christmas movies


We also start watching Christmas movies on the 1st of November. So far this year we’ve watched the 3 Tim Allen Santa Clause movies, the Dudley Moore Santa Claus movie and The Snowman. While the kids have been in bed the last month I’ve watched Sleepless in Seattle, While You Were Sleeping, An Affair to Remember, It’s a Wonderful Life, Four Christmases and Serendipity. I have yet to enjoy Love Actually, The Holiday, The Family Stone and White Christmas. As a family we have yet to watch Elf, Jack Frost, Fred Claus and both versions of Miracle on 34th Street. I know, you’re probably thinking, “Obsess much?” Right?

The Christmas tree and decorations come down from the attic on the 30th of November, the tree is erected and the lights go on. On the 1st of December the tree is decorated and decorations go up around the rest of the house.




On the first weekend in December we go ice-skating and wander around the Christmas markets, taking in the wonderful atmosphere, enjoying the food and drink on offer and making a few Christmassy purchases.

As soon as my Christmas shopping is done we watch the original Miracle on 34th Street while wrapping presents in front of the fire.

So, do you have any Christmas traditions? Please share; I love to hear what others love most about this time of year.


Classic Hits Party

Classic hits party

I had a fantastic time on Friday night at the Classic Hits 4fm Christmas Party in Munroe’s in Galway. I was there with my good friend Phillipa Maguire from The Java Writers group here in Galway. http://www.amazon.com/Infusions-Java-Writers/dp/1480239712

The music was great. We spent a good portion of the night dancing. I have to give a special mention here to Tom Heelan who had the important job of looking after jackets while his friend Monica Coughlan joined us on the dance floor.

throwing halos

The highlight of the night for me was getting to  meet Gareth O’ Callaghan and Jim McCabe. I didn’t however get a chance to talk to Robbie Fogarty, although he did tell me to pipe down when I got a bit over excited at the Battle of the Sexes. I do have a tendency to overdo the ‘Woo Hoo’s’ when I’m out. And that has nothing to do with alcohol – it’s just me. http://classichits.ie/

Although, I have to say, I did try a new cocktail on Friday night – Purple Rain – and it hit the spot nicely. It mixes my two favourite drinks, Peach Schnapps and White Rum with Grenadine and Blue Curacao. http://www.monroes.ie/live

I hope Classic Hits come back to Monroe’s next year for a Christmas Party. I urge you to text party with your name and location whenever you’re invited to do so – you won’t regret it.

To quote Throwing Halos, who played a great gig at the party, “Life’s too short.” It sure is too short not to try to cram as much fun into it as you possibly can.


Shannon & The Shortcuts - Jazzy Rock & Roll - Irish Musician, Meath, Ireland

Happy Halloween.

Here’s a little taste of Horror for those of you who would like a scare tonight.Sotd Opt 5(1)


Alice relaxed in front of a roaring fire and watched television before going to bed. She had got into her pajamas before Mark left for work and with her large warm dressing gown and fluffy slippers she curled up on the sofa, with Storm in her familiar position on her lap. She was feeling totally relaxed and able to ignore any of the sounds the house made. The creaking floorboards and howling wind no longer made her jumpy. Thinking about how jumpy she had been just one week ago made her laugh at herself. Storm, on the other hand, jumped up, growling with her hackles raised at the least little sound, needing to be soothed by Alice before she could relax again.
She let the fire go out before going out to the kitchen to make a mug of hot chocolate, Storm jumping around her feet. As she boiled the kettle and stirred some chocolate powder into the milk she found herself humming and realized that it was something she hadn’t done since that scare weeks ago. Ever since childhood she would always hum to herself while cooking, doing household chores or making a hot drink.
“The ghost stories were obviously having more of an effect on me than I realized,” she thought as she brought the hot chocolate up to bed with her.
It was her intention to get into bed and read as she drank her hot chocolate. It had been a while since she had done any reading in bed; the previous weeks had been so filled with terror that bed was where she had gone at the last minute, and then only to sleep.
Just as she was about to get under the covers her bedroom door opened and banged shut. Storm started growling, hackles raised. Alice jumped and let out a scream. Several other doors around the house opened and shut with loud bangs and Storm started barking furiously.

Love Letters

love letters

How times have changed! Recently when my husband was away on business we kept in touch via Google hangouts, phone calls, texts and email.  But when we weren’t long going out together, when I was away on my college work experience, I used to come home from work and run to the mailbox in anticipation of those words of love flowing from the page.

In five and a half months there weren’t many phone calls. It was back in the day when it would often take a full week for a letter to get from Paris to Ireland. So by the time he got my letter telling him to be by the pay phone down the road at a certain time on a certain day, that day might have passed. Usually if I posted a letter on a Monday he would have it on Friday, but sometimes it would be the following Monday before he got it.

So even though we were eight hours apart recently with him in San Francisco and  me in Ireland, it was much easier to keep in contact than back in 1994 when I was working in Disneyland, Paris and he was here in Ireland. The time zones only had us an hour apart, but because of snail mail we may as well have been living a week apart.

I think letters are a much more romantic way of keeping in touch, and it was wonderful at the time, the anticipation, the reading and rereading, the writing of the answering letter, followed by the week-long anticipation. But could I do it again? A week without any contact from him? I don’t think so.

What do you think? Love letters versus modern technology. Please leave your comments. I would love to know – should we fight for the lost art of letter writing?

more love letters



The temperatures in Galway were in the twenties on Friday as we entered the Big Top for the Imelda May gig. Things got off to a great start when Silhouette came on stage. The powerful voice of Shauna Tohill warmed the crowd up and got us all going with songs such as Can’t keep Up: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7ZeCwOcBH0k. You should check out the website: http://silhouetteofficial.com/


Mundy revved us all up with Galway Girl and July, very appropriate songs for a warm July evening in Galway. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i3V-oXwCWL4http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H8J9gftIVR8. More from Mundy can be found at: http://mundy.ie/


The atmosphere was electric by the time Imelda May took centre stage. She really rocked the Big Top with her hits Johnny Got a Boom Boom: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZucJAkzCNq8, and Mayhem: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jxj5wlXY9No, as well as wowing us with some new songs.  To find out more about Imelda May: http://imeldamay.co.uk/


Oh, the bliss. Temps hitting 30 degrees Celcius these days. This morning we dined Al  Fresco, filled the paddling pool and had some fun with water pistols. This afternoon, kids amused themselves indoors while I caught up on some writing with a delicious breeze coming in through the sun room doors. Looking forward to dining Al Fresco again this evening and some more paddling pool fun.