Growing Up In Love With Ireland
As a child I grew up listening to Irish folk music with my grand-dad. How many of you remember mixed tapes? Well, he had a suitcase of them. Looking back most of his cassette tapes had at least one song which boasted of the tales of Ireland. Sounds of fiddles, tin whistles, and bagpipes filled the air during car rides and summer days on the porch.
To fuel our fascination of the Celtic culture, each summer, we would go across the Mason-Dixon line to the annual Irish Festival in Pennsylvania. At the festival we would hang out with family and friends, listening to the traditional music, checking out the markets, and watching the river dancers. I specifically remember being mesmerized by the dancers because I used to imagine that I was one of them whenever I went to tap class.
My enchantment with the isle continued thanks to the poems and prose set along the misty cliff sides. The scenes that they painted in my mind of the thick rainy air and the towering castles made me want to want to travel so bad.
Growing up with these fancies running wild I fell in love with so many films and shows that were created in Ireland. In fact every time a scene from Game of Thrones comes on that was shot in Ireland I find myself scouring Pinterest for travel inspiration.
That Time I Started Planning A Wedding In Ireland
When I met my husband, Robert, we talked about all of the places that we dreamed of seeing. Ireland was on both of our lists.
As the topic of marriage came up I started to fantasize about a wedding on the isle. I spent months researching venues, photographers, and travel information. We talked about getting married at a Castle and then doing a day after session so that way we could have the epic bride and groom photos along the Cliffs of Moher.
After picking out a date in April picked out I was beginning to talk to a planner to finalize some details before we booked. We had nearly everything planned out. Then right before I made the leap and started booking…I changed my mind.
As badly as I wanted to go and have this adventure with Robert I really wanted my family to be there to help us celebrate our wedding day. I knew that I would be happier getting married in Pennsylvania, but part of me was still sad that we wouldn’t be going to Ireland. It just seemed like the dream of traveling to the country was slipping away from me because we didn’t know when we would get our next chance to go.
The Dream Returns
Two years passed with me thinking that going on an adventure to Ireland wasn’t going to happen. When Robert and I found out that we are expecting we decided that we didn’t want to use our child as our excuse for why we don’t travel.
We, instead, decided to start laying the tracks to be able to go on adventures as a family. I immediately started digging into information on traveling. I looked up everything from tips to traveling overseas when pregnant and on flying with an infant.
I was worried that I would be disappointed in my research, but it was quite the contrary. There is such an abundance of great resources out there and so many awesome entrepreneurs who prove that it can happen.
Everything that I read was jammed full of useful tips and information and it lit a fire in me to make it happen. Sitting in my house, listening to the wind howl all winter, had given me such cabin fever. Every hour that I spent reading and researching just made me antsier to find that next adventure.
The Opportunity Of A Lifetime
Just when I thought that I might go stir crazy I found a photography workshop in Ireland. After I found it I kept coming back to it. I saved it as a tab on my phone and I looked at it everyday.
One day the host photographer, Sadi of Whimsie Photographie, reached out to me. She already knew that I was highly interested in attending the workshop as a photographer. However, she was contacting me for a different reason.
Sadi wanted to see if Robert and I would also be interested in modeling for one of the styled shoots. Here is the best part…we would be modeling on the Cliffs of Moher. The same place that I had dreamed of having bride and groom pictures taken. I couldn’t believe it.
After getting off the phone with Sadi I was genuinely so happy and completely in shock. I couldn’t stop smiling and I was absolutely jittery with excitement when I told my husband. We both knew that this was an opportunity that we didn’t want to pass up.
Within minutes we were busy researching everything that we could think of. We even went to our local Barnes and Noble and looked at maps of Ireland and books of things to do and see.
Before we knew it we had already purchased our plane tickets and reserved our hotels. In the days following we expedited an order on passports and got all of the information that we needed from our OB. Even sitting here writing this post it seems so surreal that we are actually making it happen.
We are finally taking the trip that we always dreamed of and we are so excited for the roads that this may lead us to. Robert is already joking about how we will look back on this trip. He thinks it is so cool that we will get to show our little one that they were adventuring with us in Ireland before they were even born.
Watercolor map courtesy of: Art Print Zoe