Fiona Ness: 'Dear cleaner, it's not me, it's you...'
Dear cleaner, it's not me, it's you...
Dear cleaner, it's not me, it's you...
We've been a long time in the planning stages but isn't it starting to look like the epoch of woman has finally arrived?
His head swings high, his ears cock, his body poised and taut. When Joey stamps the ground, he stamps the world down. We might feel...
Long, long ago, in a time before food trends, I was in a vegan restaurant in Biarritz eating chocolate cake.
There's inglorious pleasure to be had in witnessing the shine being knocked off Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. When the six-foot-two, eyes of blue, baby-balancing PM came to power in...
I never thought I'd say this but thank you, Taoiseach Leo. Back in November when the good doctor cancelled Christmas for his hospital colleagues I had thought, poor show. Having worked every holiday and Friday night for the guts of 10 years as a newspaper sub-editor, I knew what it was like to toil while the world partied and eventually, a person could come to feel quite put upon. Even if it was your duty, it was nice if someone whose heart wasn't two sizes too small asked you nicely if you wouldn't mind turning up to the front line. Again. While they were at home talking turkey.
"Oh hello, old lady!" The five-year-old waves cheerily as I arrive downstairs, primped and painted for my one and only Christmas night out. In that moment I know not so much that less is more, but that for 40 and beyond, less is most definitely required.
Someone pass me the baby wipes. Perhaps it’s because it has been 10 years since I’ve had a full night’s sleep, but I am fighting the urge to wipe the beatific, new parent glow from the faces of Vogue Williams and Spencer Matthews.
If, for you, 2018 will be remembered as the year of living cautiously, then you obviously haven’t been to the Panto.
Baby Jesus wept! It's Christmas, the season of His birth, and there He is, away in a manger, no crib for a bed, and no one is paying Him a blind bit of attention. He only went and got himself born so He could save the whole of mankind from exactly the sort of excess Christmas has come to represent, and who's the man of the moment? Not the Son of God, but a cheap little elf.
Children can be so cruel. "Why do we have to be the future, when all you've left us with is a dying planet?" the nine-year-old asks me with an accusatory tone.
How's this for a scare at Halloween? Pumpkins are turning into an environmental hazard because millions of us are buying them, just to throw...
This year's Leaving Cert results might have presented an all-male line-up of eight H1 achievers, but the fact still remains: girls generally do better than boys at school. What isn't so clear is why?
Emoluments and perquisites: the sweeteners that can entice talented people to take up a job offer, or remain in a job they might otherwise have left.
Why did rich Vikings build their houses at the top of the hill? So they could roll down to the bottom, of course.
There's nothing like a moral panic to green-light the willing suspension of our critical thinking. Take Momo, the image of the bird-woman linked to reports of children being encouraged online to harm themselves or others.
So many kitchen gadgets take up lots of space on the worktop yet are only used occasionally. And if you put them away in a cupboard, then it's a case of out of sight, out of mind - it's just such a faff to drag them out only to have to clean them and put them away afterwards. One that's worth making room for is a multi-tasking personal blender for making smoothies, soups, sauces and dressings. Go for one of the 'bullet' style versions that's compact enough to fit in the smallest of kitchens. There are cheaper versions available, but they will not be as powerful, and you may...
Candy floss machines, harpists, flower arranging lessons, there was ne'er a twin breast pump in sight when Meghan Markle's new besties met to throw the duchess's baby shower this week.
Call me an old romantic but I am rejoicing that Valentine's Day is over. Each year I approach the day with cold dread. Is that normal?
To be fair, the person who left the newspaper clipping on my desk thought they were helping. 'It's a scandal that working mothers are 40pc more stressed than other people', the headline ran.
As we career downhill on a gluttonous romp toward Christmas (gorging along the way on a Black Friday where we spend as much as possible, buying as much as possible, for the cheapest price possible), I am caught up in altogether more pressing matters: considering what books Santa will bring to the girls of the house this year.
You can learn a lot about life from the top of Carrauntoohil. Or at least I did, 17 years go, when I brought a scout patrol to the top.
All parents know that moment: The tension is high; the opposition is closing in.
The infertility crisis is one thing, but what about the granny crisis? Because, mark my words, it's coming too. As the national trend for having children later in life continues, at 42 I'm already worried that I'm never going to make it to grannyhood - or if I do, that I'll be too old to be of any use to my over-worked, over-stressed offspring in helping them care for their families. And where will we all be then?
Mothers of Ireland, ask yourself this: how relaxing would a weekend break with three small children need to be before you totally forgot about your 'me time', preciously prearranged with the hotel spa?
How will you explain the abortion referendum to your children? The short answer is, I’d hoped not to. As with the other big ticket news items, I had expected the savage servility of the world to slide on by. Naivety, it seems, is not the sole preserve of the young.
The Tony and Olivier award-winning adaptation of the Roald Dahl classic by Dennis Kelly and Tim Minchin comes to the Bord Gais Energy Theatre in Dublin
Live like a lord and lady on Dublin's doorstep, says Fiona Ness.
Do you know how to confront a gaggle of angry French geese?
What do you wish for when you wish for a child? You wish for them to be happy and healthy - perhaps wealthy - and that you yourself will be wise enough to help them navigate the choppy waters as they grow.
A standing ovation on an opening night can’t be wrong - especially one that goes on so long that Nanny Ninny Noonah (Joe Conlan) has to intervene and tell you all to give it a rest. There’d be time for more clapping in a bit, anyway.
'If you give a pig a party, she's going to ask for some balloons…" so the popular children's book goes.
The first thing you notice about Linda's home is the dog. After a brief moment of ecstasy over the unexpected arrival of visitors, he scuttles back to his basket by the window and looks dolefully out to sea. Rows of misshapen pottery crafted by little hands are stacked over the TV and a clutter of family pictures butt up against colourful pots of homemade slime. A "posh coffee" machine whirs in the background. It's 10.30am on a school-day and there's not a breakfast dish in sight.
Should you body-shame a three-year-old? That practice whereby we judge a person by criticising their personal appearance? With Ireland in the grip of an obesity crisis where one-in-four children is overweight or obese, we’re undoubtedly about to find out.
It goes something like this: One moment you are laughing hysterically at your two-year-old's antics in front of the TV, and the next you are weeping into each other's arms that you'll never again experience the cuteness of a toddler in the house because said toddler is your second child and - as we all know - two children is enough.
Five hundred GAA coaches can't be wrong. "Amazing," an Ogra coach commented recently, as he watched our girls sprint up and down the pitch, "to see a kid that can actually run".
So it begins. Unable to make sense of the brutal killing of Limerick man Jason Corbett, the dissection of the woman co-convicted of his murder, his wife Molly Martens-Corbett, follows.
They say it takes a village to raise a child. To abort one could soon be no one else's business but your own.
In truth, it was never about the socks. When Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau lovebombed his way into Ireland on Monday, the question on everyone’s lips was “will a trade deal between Europe and Canada damage Irish agriculture, the backbone of our economy?”. Nah, I’m only messing, it was “what did you think of Leo’s socks?”
Summer camps seem like a great idea. Here's why.
Claire Byrne is no stranger to the art of improvisation. Her television and radio shows place her front and centre in curating the national conversation on the hoof; putting it up to politicians and navigating debates on emotive subjects, live on air. But last Monday, as viewers settled down to watch the last Claire Byrne Live show of the season on RTÉ One, they could have had no idea of the masterful improv going on right under their noses.
Before I'd even finished reading yesterday's newspaper headline, the flashbacks had begun.
'Which would you rather be if you had the choice: divinely beautiful or dazzlingly clever or angelically good?"
I began to harbour suspicions about the 'naughty step' as a method of disciplining children when my three-year-old used it as a launching pad for punching through our glass front door.
Husband and wife, Fachtna Kelly and Fiona Ness, share their story of miscarriage and how time works on the feelings of pain and loss
From bikes to hikes and historical adventures, the Scottish Highlands make for a stunning family holiday.
Healthy eating duo Stephen and David Flynn have sold more than 100,000 copies of their bestselling cookbook, 'The Happy Pear', generating turnover of around €2m through the bookshop tills.
Twenty-one years ago my cousin owned a flat in the shadow of Murrayfield from where, of Saturday afternoon, I'd hear the roar go up. It sounded like a foreign language. My cousin was Edinburgh but I was Glasgow, where rugby was for toffs who liked their violence on the pitch. What's more, they were the people who changed our national anthem into 'Oh Flower of Scotland' because the real one was too hard to sing at the match.
Underprivileged - that's what we'd call Sonny Knolls nowadays. But in 1980s Dublin, he is a boy much like any other. A boy with a beautiful face who works in the butcher shop after school, smokes in the field with Sharon and watches his mother crumbling at the kitchen sink; waiting interminably for the light to break. In writer Karl Geary's Dublin, there's no Jimmy Rabbitte yakking in the bath. This writer has previous. The youngest of eight, he left a desolate Dublin in the 1980s for New York, aged 16. Here he went on to typify the emigrant dream, co-running the legendary music bar Sin-...
Television presenter Claire Byrne has announced that she is pregnant with her third child.
Television presenter Claire Byrne has announced she is pregnant with her third child - although she is happy to keep the baby's gender a surprise.
'What's the point of having Christmas without the baby Jesus?"
Poor old everyone's ultimate fantasy female, Barbie. What has traditionally been her most popular time of year has turned into just the worst time of the year (a cold coming she had of it, a poet might say) as this December she is again the focal point for all society's ills.
If it’s men in tights you’re looking for, then Dublin’s Gaiety Theatre is the spot this Christmas, with its sparkling panto production of Robin Hood and his Merry Men.
As students of the law 20 years ago, our class once whiled away an entire afternoon debating the terminology around "battered women". Or should it be "spousal abuse"? Or "domestic violence"? Or, or, or. If you label me, you negate me… it was all incredibly important stuff.
Is it just me, or has everyone else had enough of mums? Not their mum (although that happens) but every mum: the whole goddamn modern cult of motherhood. The one that says you're not a good mum unless you're making some sort of splash about it. The one where every mum who thinks they are the only person to have ever given birth to a child, also thinks they should spawn an entire industry off the back of it.
Ping! Ping! Ping! Whatsapp is working overtime. The phone might be on the desk beside me but Whatsapp is sitting like a demon on my shoulder, each ping an insouciant splash of vinegar into a wound of guilt. What guilt? The type of unassuaged guilt that was hammered home by this newspaper earlier this week, when it proclaimed: 'Working parents are damaging child health due...
Claire Byrne is having a Cinderella moment. Summoned to the recent RTÉ autumn schedule launch in Dublin, she has skilfully MCd the event, joined a huddle of blondes for the photoshoot, and then skedaddled, leaving behind only a room full of praise and a smudge of shocking pink lippy on her water glass.
Broadcaster Claire Byrne has said she would have asked Sonia O'Sullivan about the Rio ticketing scandal when she appeared as a pundit on RTÉ's Olympics coverage.
Please, don't call the guards, but Je m'accuse. I am guilty of a heinous act. What crime? The one where I give my kids treats. I give them in full knowledge that poor food choices lead to a life of obesity and ill health. A life of cancer risks, heart disease and diabetes and even infertility.
This week, as the five million people living in UK who can claim Irish ancestry form a queue for an Irish passport on the back of Brexit, I will head quietly in the opposite direction, applying for British passports for my children.
No one, least of all pregnant women, enjoys being reminded of their weight. In fact, just try bringing it up, then sit back and watch as they rage into their Häagen-Dazs. But with yesterday's report that rising numbers of overweight pregnant women are risking their own health and serious complications in the birth of their child, we have at least made a start. Pregnancy, it seems, is...