Wednesday, 27 July 2011

Jigs 'n' Rigs

This Friday is a special day as Danny and I will be getting the ferry to the magical island of Rathlin off the North Antrim coast for the Jigs 'n' Rigs music festival. It'll be Dan's first experience of it and my third. I was so excited the morning of my first trip to Rathlin in '04 my mother had to send me out into the back garden to run off some energy the way she used to do when I was wee. Here are some photos from the other two trips.



If possible I'm even more excited this time around because it's three years since I've been to the festival. These photos aren't great as they're scanned from prints I took in '04 and then I stupidly deleted a whole memory card's worth from my time there in '07 and could only salvage a few.

I'm taking my camera this time so that I can capture the wonder of Jigs 'n' Rigs '11 and I'm hoping and praying that it doesn't befall any foolish mishaps.

The first time I went there were no facilities at all and going to the toilet meant a solitary ramble over the heather and washing meant finding a pool of water somewhere in the hills. There will definitely be no dirty burger vans or stands selling T-shirts. It's heaven.


p.s. if you happen to be the photographer of the fire spinner images let me know!

Thursday, 14 July 2011

Wedding number three.


Well sort of....
A handfasting can be a betrothal, or a wedding that lasts forever or it can last just one year and a day. I've gone for that last option as it allows me to drag out the celebrations each year!

So two years and two days since the photos in my last post Dan, his mother and I decided to explore a cave on the White Rocks beach in Portrush and to bind our hands again. It was very low key and improvised. And once again the sun blessed us with its presence.


No more photgraphs of me for a while now I promise.

Our handfasting

This weekend past was Danny and my 1st wedding anniversary and on Monday we also had our third wedding ceremony. Confused? Let me explain.

Two years ago we had a handfasting in Ards forest in Donegal, overseen by my good friend Tasha who turned priestess for the day. (click here to read more about handfastings)
The pre-Christian marriage tradition of the handfasting  lasted for one year and one day, ending on our 'real' wedding day last year. 

Here are some pictures of that first ceremony. It was in no way legally binding but none the less a marriage to a very special man.



We collected reeds and flowers that morning from near our house and I made this St.Brigid's cross and Dan and I made my flower head dress together.

The site was an ancient mound in the forest that had a huge altar-like stone in its centre that may well have acted as a mass rock during penal times. The mound has a ring of large stones around its rim and is surrounded on two sides by a tidal bay.


Priestess Natasha on the beach and an amazing holed stone in another part of the forest.
We put our still bound hands through the hole in the stone and Natasha untied the cords, completing the binding ceremony.


Photos by Maria O'Hara and Tomas Bamford.

Rivendell in Portstewart


I came across these magical sandcastles on the Strand Beach in Portstewart at the weekend and there was a gorgeous purple sky. If only we saw sunsets like that in Belfast every night.

Saturday, 2 July 2011

Cake stand making at the Crescent


I've spent the last two saturday mornings teaching classes at the Crescent Arts Centre in how to make cake stands by recycling vintage china.

We also did a bit of origami while waiting for the glue to dry. I loved it and am leading a class tomorrow morning in origami - wish me luck.

Here are some of the stands for cupcakes that people made.