Tuesday, August 31, 2010

On yer bike!

Cycling has to be one of my most enjoyable past times and, it seems, very trendy right now. I took it up again about 17 months ago having not cycled since I was a young teenager. I joined a local club too in order to meet a few more people and this way it is a social leisure cycle and I'm keeping fit without it feeling like a workout. I was in Berlin this summer and the amount of cyclists in that city was a real eye opener and I don't just mean during the day, there are as many cyclists biking their way through the city at 1am, 2am and so on!  How wonderful to apply that lifestyle here in Ireland or any other country for that matter. I continued to ponder on that thought and realised that we have a lot to do to catch up with certain European towns and cities. Kids love their shiny new bikes from Santa or for their birthdays and wouldn't it be great to be able to go cycling safely as a family rather than having to drive to the nearest park so kids can cycle (as a single cyclist) in safety?

The Right Bike

It's essential that you get the right bike so, you need to know whether you want to go mountain biking, just cycle to work or do leisure tours. Your cycling shop should measure you for your bike. If it's not your size then it is dangerous. If your salesman is happy to let you buy any old bike just because you like the look of it and isn't interested in or doesn't know how to measure you for a bike, Run a mile! YOU MUST HAVE:
  • The right bike for the right type of cycling
  • It must fit you correctly
Word of mouth is a great advertisement.

Never cycle without a helmet, it could save your life!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Where you do you start when you decide to go "Eco Friendly"?  Difficult I know. You can start to think that there is so much to be done that, little old (or young) you couldn't possibly change the world and therefore give up before you start. Well I started when I found a book written by Feilim Harty called "Get rid of your Bin" and I was so inspired that that is exactly what I did. I took a long hard look at recycling and gave myself 6 months to try to recycle most of my rubbish (this was also when the next "Bin man" bill was due) and went for it. (As it happened I lost my job at the same time the bin man bill was due so that helped with the decision! ) I'm delighted. Now I recycle approximately 85-90% of my rubbish by taking it to the recycling bank myself.  For €5 every 8-10 weeks I trek off to the recycling centre. Here is how to start:

Recycling Tips

Recycling should save you money as well as caring about the environment. You dont need to buy fancy recycling bins to separate your rubbish (unless you want to of course). You can use cardboard boxes stacked one on top of the other and labelled, like I do (sorry mum-she has great style and taste you know). If they fall apart after a bit then they can go into the compost. Hey presto!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Feed the Birds

Who are you looking at?

I absolutely love feeding the birds and do it every winter. Some people say you can feed them throughout the summer which will give them the extra energy to hunt for their young and others say they should fend for themselves. I don't know, but today I decided it was time to get out the peanuts and fat balls and remind them that there is always a place here for them to stuff their little feathery faces! My parents live in the country and while I was there today I put the food out and waited...

Friday, August 27, 2010

Keeping Buzy
I've spent a lot of time this summer trying to get my garden sorted. We live on a housing estate and haven't touched the garden since we moved in. I knew I wanted as many wild flowers as possible, something that will attract the insects, bees and butterflies that I would like. At a festival recently I was told that a certain type of honey bee are a dying breed, and so I thought I would try to help them along...I have a lovely pot of lavender outside my front door and they seem to love this. Whenever I go outside this summer there is a gentle buzzing and unlike wasps I am never wary of them as I know they just want to be left alone to get on with their work. I made friends with a lovely lady this year who is really green fingered and she has given me some lovely plants to help me on my way. I popped out today to take a look at how my garden is getting on and here are some photo's...

Another day at the office.
Too good to miss
I do believe that's another type of bee, all in a days work.