Why is marriage alot like sourdough?

Why is marriage a lot like sourdough? Because it doesn’t always work. See, in making sourdough, you need time, warmth, labour, plus the basic ingredients – Isn’t that exactly what marriage needs too?


Certain family members are gluten intolerant, so we bake all our own bread. Thankfully our local whole food store – Hudson’s Wholefoods http://www.hudsonswholefoods.com/, who do great bulk deals – can supply me with 25 kilo bags of spelt and rye. We have been baking sourdough for over a month now.


Last week, I lost the magic. The loaves were dense, and just not rising enough. I was adding too much water or not having enough patience to wait. I still can’t get when to add the salt. The best way to eat the stuff was to toast it, which then created this thin bricklike slice on which to spread ones morning butter. Not very comforting for the soul.


I like my marriage when it’s like a good loaf of bread. I am happy to put the time and effort into it, but I sort of expect that there is going to be a relatively fluffy and nourishing but tasty bit of bread at the end. But on our fifteenth year together I am finally getting that marriage is a lot like sourdough. You can do everything according to the recipe, but it won’t necessarily turn out right. There is an art, a creative judgment call on tweaking that recipe totally dependent on the environment at that moment in time. Basically it isn’t always successful. But the microorganisms are still there in the starter. It is always alive and ready for another try (as long as you remember to feed it!).  These sleepless nights with darling daughter, and daytimes with cranky birth son No. 1 are driving Husband and I nuts. We are combating it with hugs, and kisses and trying to be really nice when we are not snarling, and somehow our marriage still alive. Each day brings a different kind of loaf; some days work out great, and some days are awful.


Just like us.Image

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Fermenting in the Spring Equinox

After a nice long hibernation from the world, blogging and life, I am renewed and determined to post more regularly. So…today I will be sharing my latest craze – home fermentation.

Along the sideboard in the kitchen are various pots bubbling away. One small ceramic pot covered with a green J-cloth and a jaunty silver ribbon is the sourdough starter. Another larger food grade plastic bucket topped with a muslin cloth houses the kombucha. There are others; red cabbage sauerkraut, a turnip based Kim chee, and ginger carrots.

My kids call the kombucha mushroom pee and my eldest birth son pretends that sourdough sponge is his barf. I let them play, because they eat and drink these products. Somehow their contorted faces as they yell ‘ ewwwwwwww gross’ are very happy, and are part of some far off remembered tribal dance that celebrates alive food. These foods are powerful. They smell. They ooze. They taste pungent and inescapable. My baby girls face as she sucked on a strand of purple cabbage transformed by lacto fermentation was a Shakespeare play or a Hindi drama. These foods are complex.

As I messily transferred the latest batch of caraway, carrot and cabbage, the deep violet juice overran the kilner jar. My fingertips and the table now share an indigo tint. From the waiting and stewing and fermenting a new jar of sour glory has been born.

I wish that we all burst forth on this spring transformed by the fermentation of winter. I am a happy witch.

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Budget 2012 Part One (event chart)


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The Grinding of the Teeth

I went to the dentist recently. A molar that turned into an emergency root canal right after baby no. 1, with the birth of baby no. 4,  broke in half. Four kids and only destroyed one tooth… The point being is that the dentist told me I grind my teeth.

How can I have existed for 36 years and not been aware that this is something I do? Husband insists that he has never heard me grinding away while I sleep, but then he snores way too loud and always sleeps heavier that I do. I never heard any parential annecdotes about this habit. Yet the dentist insists that my front right tooth has had 2mm shaved off of it. The upshot is that I get to sleep in a lovely plastic mouthguard that is going to set me back €150. Actually it is the romantic indications of looking like a rugby player at night that has me worried .

Seeing as Saturn is associated with the teeth I started to look at some astrological indicators for this behaviour.  I threw astrology saturn teeth grinding into Google just to see what would show up.  I found this


It is an account of a homeopathic proving test for a remedy made of the light of Saturn. ‘The remedy was made by exposing powdered milk sugar to a powerful telescope in Boston, Massachusetts while it was focused on the planet Saturn during April 2009.
The remedy was triturated to a 3C on July 25, 2009 by a group of 7 people in Buffalo, New York. ’ While the proving indicated that this remedy might be effective for accident related trauma, bone and nerve damage, and not for my grinding teeth, I went to sleep that night a happier woman. . Who knew people were collecting the distant light of celestial bodies, and creating homeopathic remedies?

It is a weird and wonderful world out there.

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Giving Thanks

Liz Green says about Capricorns ‘ But to most goats, life is a serious business, because it has to be mastered if you want to survive’ ( Astrology for Lovers). I do take life seriously, so seriously that I have struggled with depression since I was a child. So, one of the things that I have had to learn is how to trust. I could go into a long spiel about all the reasons why trust has be a difficult thing to master. But I hate that. I don’t like how people’s weakness or mistakes define them, like not knowing somehow means more than knowing. Everyone has to learn, we are not lesser for having to do so. And everyone’s life lesson plan is different. My spirit and I just were absent on all the days devoted to learning trust.

My reason for posting today is to give thanks.

I thank the universe for giving me countless reasons to trust in life being good over the last year. There are so very many things: My lovely baby daughter born on Darling Husband’s birthday, eleven days late but at home. My father slipping into a weird world of endless hotels and retreats in his Alzheimer’s mind, but maintaining a sense of himself throughout. The magnificent house we live in and get to take care of. The year of reconnecting with our beautiful lost eldest son/stepson after four years of no contact being returned at all. The joy of all our animals. Buddy the amazing escaping Lab. Flash the best fox watchdog ever. The geese, ducks, chickens, rabbits, fish, turtles and now Johnny the African land snail.

And most importantly you all my friends. All of you have encouraged, challenged, helped, loved, forgiven, fought with and befriended my family and I , this year.

I especially give thanks to the two lovely families that let me feed them Thanksgiving dinner tonight. (You know who you are!) They have given unstintingly to my family and children since we have first met them. I treasure the times we spend together, and feel so blessed that my children can know and play with their children. They are vibrant families, different but similar in their passion for their children’s wellbeing and their joy in life. To you, thank you!!!!!

Blessed Be.



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…..possible career?

I just finished a Haiku workshop in the Schull Library

Amongst the wonderful lively exchanges, a eight year old boy asked me; ” Is this your job? Do you travel all over the world and show kids how to do poetry?”

Regretfully I had to answer no.

Got me thinking WOW what a cool job that would be!

From the CCC website:

Schull Library,
Main Street,
Co. Cork.

Tel: (028) 28290

Email: schull.library@corkcoco.ie

Directons to the library: The library is situated at the upper end of the main street in Schull village. It stands on the corner of Upper Main Street and Colla Road and is directly opposite The Bunratty Inn.

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Summer of the Sheep

A lot has happened since my last entry on this blog. Being the Goat that I am, I nearly packed it all in blogwise. My initial thinking ran: ‘ you haven’t made a weekly entry, much less an entry per month this year, and therefore you don’t deserve a blog in which to showcase your thoughts.’ Thankfully the secondary thinking went along the lines of: ‘Bollocks to that – nobody reads it anyway, so no one is going to notice whether or not you have posted anything.’ And then finally I remembered those of you who have told me you read this, and those kind souls who have also told me that it made them laugh. Hence today’s entry, it might not make you laugh, but hopefully will at least make you smile.

Well we have a baby girl in our family now – a whopper at 10 lbs 3 oz born on my husbands birthday! She is now 9 weeks old and the most amazing baby ever! (I get to say that because I am her mom, plus my other sons and my stepson were all amazing babies too.) I get told that she looks like me to my horror. And then get told off for being concerned because apparently that is ok (i.e. my appearance isn’t hideous) but secretly I don’t believe a word of it. No one looks like her – she is simply divine! Ok she does have Libra rising, and Saturn conjunct Asc, so we would have a bit in common astrologically…

Don’t be concerned amusing anecdote on way….

The darling male Gemini in my life (hubbie) decided that he wanted to try his hand at sheep farming. He decided this about three weeks before Baby showed up, and mind you she was eleven days late. All was well – he got a pair of sheep. The first lot ran away/got found/got sick/ died. The second lot have spent their entire existence finding ways to run away. Thankfully none have gotten sick or died, but I am amazed at them. I have never met a more baffling animal – What on earth is the motivation of a sheep? They eat, sleep, drink and breed, but they also seem to spend an enormous amount of energy running though things, especially fences and attempting to eat deadly things. What possessed humanity to farm sheep? How on earth are they domesticated? Why do I have to ask so many questions about sheep?


Moral of the story is:

Don’t marry a Gemini if you are a Capricorn as they will do weird things like suddenly become a (small scale) sheep farmer, and sheep farming is most definitely a vocation like teaching or nursing – not for the faint of heart or the unfit or something to be taken up on the spur of the moment!

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