Friday, 27 June 2014

Expat First Communion in Ireland

Children grow so fast, don't they? It feels like yesterday when we arrived in Ireland (thinking: oh, we'll be back in Spain in two or three years), and we've already celebrated our 7th anniversary in Dublin!

We've been ticking boxes here: first day of creche, the day they said their first word, the day they started walking, first day of big boys school.... and last May it was the day of Samuel's First Communion!

So here we were: so happy for him, for the important day he was going to live - our families are both Catholic- but not having a clue of how we were going to celebrate (how do Dubliners/Irish people celebrate First Communions???)

We had a chat at home: the most important part (the First Communion sacrament ceremony) was covered, and Samuel was getting ready for it. Re the festive part, well, let's celebrate the way we like, not thinking what Spaniards or Irish would do, just how we would like to enjoy such an important day.

October 2013: we prepare our guest list - 22 people including the four of us (17 coming from Spain!) All guests are close relatives (our siblings, close cousins and families)

January 2014: all guests have their plane tickets so it's time to close deal for accommodation. We end up choosing ARIEL HOUSE, by the Aviva Stadium and very close to Samuel's school (so guests could walk to church on the Communion day). Now, after our experience there, I would wholeheartedly recommend it if you're looking for a good traditional and affordable B&B with very good food and very nice staff.

We had to start looking for a place to have dinner on the day. This was complicated: we wanted something nice, with good local food, nice and relaxed. We were looking for a place outside Dublin, so our relatives could see something different than the city. One February morning, on a day trip to Glendalough we literally run into THE GRANGE KITCHEN: a lovely little restaurant, with fantastic views, right outside Roundwood - it was love at first sight! We talked to Anne, the owner of the place, agreed on a menu and left the place convinced that this was where we wanted to have dinner.

March 2014: we hire a mini bus (24 seat) to take us to Glendalough (first stop) and to the restaurant on the Big Day. We do not have to worry anymore about the transport...or about the toast during dinner, as we will not have to drive :-)

May 15th 2014: Our guests arrive - getting nervous...

May 17th 2014: Sunny and warm (yessss!)

Ceremony starts at 11:00h and goes beautifully well. The kids are so focused and everything is really well prepared. Really touching

Here he is, looking up at his cousins who were following everything from upstairs

After the ceremony, we had some time for a snack in the gardens (prepared by the school) and in the afternoon we left in the minibus to Glendalough. Great and relaxed time.

Also great and relaxed was the dinner at the restaurant and the drinks afterwards

We had a couple of little presents for our guests:

- The First Communion cap, so nobody would get lost in Glendalough and everybody would be protected from the Irish burning sun (and I promise it was burning!). Even ghrandpa and grannie wore it all afternoon

- The best fresh home made cookies ever, prepared by Anne from The Grange Kitchen. We gave one jar to every family who came and the cookies were almost gone before we got home in the evening (the ones who could survived were eaten in the next morning)

- The Cake! Completely prepared by Dad (ole!), who went to bed rather late the day before, to do such a nice cake (and it tasted so good...)

Everybody left the following day. It was an unforgettable weekend. I'm sure it wouldn't have been better in Spain, so thanks Ireland for the experience!


    Gracias cuños x compartir

  2. Fueron momentos gratísimos. Todo salió genial y creo que nos divertimos al máximo. ¿recordáis los cánticos en el autobús?
    Tía Alice