Well it looks like the trip to Ireland has been given the official thumbs up, of course that could be a thumbs up for Evan's first taste of Guinness cream. So much happened in such a short period of time its hard to relay it all in just a few words and photos - so bear with me as this may be a little longer than normal.

The flying portion of the trip was tough on everyone. Neither of the boys slept which led to increasingly crusty attitudes. It was with a fatigued sigh of relief when we got to my parents place just outside of Omagh, Co Tyrone. Here's a photo taken from halfway up their backyard, one of Evan's favourite pastimes was throwing sticks in the little creek.

Another of Evan's favourite pastimes was watching his grandad make a coal fire in the morning. The other part to this pastime was repeating "Grandad make fire" endlessly, no matter the time of day. In fact it was not unusual for Evan to place this statement into the middle of a sentence for no apparent reason other than perhaps he was quite pleased to know someone who could make fire.

Soon we had settled into a routine of sleeping, eating and strolling around Omagh and of course an occasional bumping into an occasional Guinness. Just as the routine came together it was time to head down to Dublin for Doreen's first marathon. Here's a shot of Doreen just about 30 seconds from the starting gun.

I will let Doreen talk about her marathon but suffice to say I'm really proud of her accomplishing such a tough personal goal. When only a week or two after a C-section she started talking about marathon trg I rolled my eyes. Seven months later, three half-marathons and a full marathon under her belt I am sure I can promote her back from her recent demotion to coffee agent in trg and back up to a well deserved coffee agent postion. Here's a shot of Doreen and Evan walking away from the finish line. You can't see Keegan, that's because he is far too young to walk, so he had to be happy with being strapped to my chest.

While Doreen was running I finally managed to track down a decent coffee by way of a double espresso and a cappuccino at Bewley's on Grafton St. They roast in-house and work off two La Marzocco's, and at a quick glance what looked to be Mazzer's in a really nice coffee bar layout. Costa coffee, O'Briens and various other attempts at a good coffee didn't even come close to the newish version of Bewley's cafe. While I stood under a shop awning with Keegan directly across from Bewley's I watched as Evan proceeded to jump up and down in every single puddle available - and there were a lot.

About an hour out of Dublin on the way back to Omagh we stopped in a pub for Doreen's victory pint. Here is a classic photo capturing post-marathon catlike reflexes all to save a two year old from the tragedy of spilled Guinness.

Just before we left Ireland, Evan got to celebrate his 2nd birthday with balloons, hats, banners, Bob the Builder tablecloth and lots of Marks & Spencers chocolate cake.

Keegan on the other hand got to celebrate Evan's b-day by selecting an alternate offering from the menu to include baby food, rice crackers and oh yeah, his b-day hat.

Well the time flew by and it was an early jump off to the Belfast airport only to realize we hadn't got a photo of the six of us together. So here is a photographer's dream perspective, mini-tripod on the floor of the departure hallway. Even as we were loading onto the airplane Evan was heard saying "Grandad make fire".