Here's surprise number two... we are moving to Cork, Ireland.
Stan and I started our marriage living in Wymount BYU married housing. After our first year there we moved to a Condo by the train tracks. Then about a year later we moved to Orem and bought our first home. After three and a half years, we moved to Tooele and bought a second home and rented out the Orem one. I thought we would live in Tooele for a long time, but interestingly enough after almost a year we have rented it out as well and we are heading for a new adventure. I still cannot believe we are moving to IRELAND!
Stan's company was nice enough to send Stan and I over to Cork, Ireland in June to find a home, a school for Gregory, and investigate prices on internet, TV, phones, cars, taxes, etc We tried to think of everything and began to price it all out. I think now we have a good idea what to expect, at least a better one. We found a lovely school for Gregory. It will be absolutely perfect for him. We also found an adorable little townhouse which will be great.
We are going to live in Carrigaline which is about six miles outside Cork City Centre. Stan will be working very close to Carrigaline so that's good. Carrigaline is such a cute village, a perfect place to live and raise our soon-to-be three boys.
During our trip over to Cork we set up our bank accounts. I can now say that I have an "off-shore" bank account :) Here's a picture of one of the branches of the Bank of Ireland in Carrigaline.
This is such an adorable Irish Sweet Shop. It was full of yummy candies, chocolates, and homemade treats. I'm sure we will be spending some time in this shop in the future.
Now the next few photos are of the City Centre. It's a 10-15 minute drive from the village where we will be living. One night we went to a lovely restaurant where we found a natural spring that turned into a beautiful waterfall right in the center of Cork.
I love that in Cork it's really close to the Ocean. There are many rivers that run in from the ocean into the city. This is the River Lee, when the wind blows I sometimes could smell the sweet smells of the ocean.
This is a more modern part of the City Centre, there's a huge section of nice shops and department stores. I'm excited to go shopping there and updating my style to a more modern, European wardrobe. It's going to be a lot of fun.
Here's a view from up on the one side of Cork. The main portion of the city is down in a valley and there are hills that surround most of the City Centre. The landscape is green and beautiful. I will miss the mountains, but Ireland is quite beautiful, there is much that will fill the mountain void.
Castles are amazing in Europe. I've seen castles all over Europe, but never in Ireland. Here is Blarney Castle, which is a 15-20 minute drive outside the City Center in the opposite direction from where we will be living in Carrigaline.
The Blarney Castle was amazing, truly a beautiful place, especially hundreds of years ago when it was lived in. I cannot wait to bring Gregory and George back to this castle in a couple of months. They will love it!
So beautiful and green. There are rivers and lakes everywhere in Ireland.
Here is the entrance into the dungeons. The boys will especially love this place.
When we come back, I think we should be in sweats or in clothes we don't care much about, so we can crawl back in the dungeons and really get a feel for those that were forced to live there.
Can you imagine living there in that chateau, it's not a castle, but what a lovely place nestled in-between the trees and foliage.
I think because I was pregnant, it kind of made me sick to think about all the people who were kissing this stone, so I chose not to, but here is Stan kissing the Blarney Stone! Good for you Stan, I hope you get all the good luck, luxury, and wealth that was promised to you!
About a 30 minute drive past Carrigaline, you'll get to a beautiful little village next to the seaside. It was so lovely. I really wanted to find a home to live in out here, and we did find some very very lovely homes overlooking the sea. However, we knew we would pay a fortune in gas commuting. We experienced this living in Tooele. It's been so wonderful, but Stan drove 50 miles each way to get to Draper... and the gas did add up.
Look what I found by the seaside, a goat!
This beach looks fun! I'm told if we had traveled 30 minutes in the other direction, we would find sandy beaches. I think both will be fun to play in.
Cork, Ireland...we are excited to call you home. I cannot believe we are being given this amazing opportunity. It will be a grand adventure, and I'm planning on making it the best that we can. I will miss my family and good friends back in Utah, so we will have to make up for that by discovering and traveling around Europe. Ryan Air will be my best friend as we can get tickets to other European countries from 10-20 euros. It should be a great experience for our family. We will even have a baby there! Wish me good luck with that :)