Spring Has Finally Arrived in Sligo + A Quick Our Crossings Life Update

Just a few weeks ago, we were living our best lives. Between visiting our favourite beaches and nearby woods, popping in to see our neighbours and letting kids play together, getting ready to celebrate Ericeiras much-awaited 4th Birthday and our 18th anniversary which falls on St. Patrick’s Day and planning our future travels, it was all perfect.

It was mid-March, one of the most adorable seasons of the year when daffodils start to appear in Irish gardens and when surrounding fields are bursting with friendliness and cuteness of young lambs. We were delighted to finally see that the days are gradually beginning to stretch and with more frequent appearances of the sun, we slowly started to wake up from winter hibernation feeling ready to tackle any life’s challenges.

Cut to today, when all the schools, restaurants and pubs are closed in Ireland due to coronavirus that moved quietly yet quickly from Wuhan China to Europe and now has been making headlines in Ireland, we are in a lockdown. Just like the rest of the world, we are learning to adapt to our new living conditions and trying to stay positive.

Snowdrops are my particular favourite to photograph as they grace us with their presence, and I am so glad I had a chance to capture them before isolation.

Cancelled travel plans and future blogging

As coronavirus lockdown loomed in Ireland and Scotland and we were urged by the government to stay at home and isolate ourselves,  our dream trip to the Isle of Skye, where large pinnacles of rock that stands high and can be seen for miles around, was simply out of the question.

Coming to terms with the fact that we need to cancel the trip we had been gleefully planning for the past six months wasn’t a painless process. Yet I wasn’t gonna let it ruin my day because the health of humanity was more important.

Despite the current situation, our love for travelling still remains. And despite the non-travel circumstances, we are happily digging deep into our photo archives, continuing to write about past trips and contemplating future ones.

Although I’m a loner at heart, adjusting to limited human interactions and confined spaces took a few tries to get it right. For now, our plan is to stay healthy, practice smart sanitation and see if we can help someone in need.

It’s the simple things in life!

Future travel plans

Despite these sudden turbulent times, nothing can stop us from dreaming,  staying connected and planning future trips. We have to keep calm and remind ourselves that the storm shall pass and that we are only taking time out to be with family.

Yes, it’s no secret that we love to travel. We thrive while going on adventures and exploring new countries, but if we have to stay in Ireland, then be it, because the drama and beauty of Ireland’s coastline are not to be underestimated.

Much like travelling to new countries, exploring Ireland’s national parks, surfing Wild Atlantic waves and visiting fishing villages provide a healthy dose of admiration, curiosity and family fun.

At some point, we came to fully appreciate the fact we have lived past 20  years in Ireland and at some point, we realised that we don’t have to travel far to find beautiful scenery or go for a rewarding hike.

Finding new projects while in isolation

Even if your travel and life plans are cancelled due to pandemic, remember it’s only temporary. Life, as we knew it a month ago, will return again and we will be allowed to kiss, travel and hug again.

While no one likes to be forced to live and think differently, you can use this time to your advantage and do the things you always wanted to do but never had the time.

Be creative and find new projects. Sort out and edit photos from your previous trips. Practice photography.  Try a new recipe. Listen to the podcast.

Slow down and read books. Read books inspired by the countries you wish to visit because one of the easiest ways to transport yourself to a new place when your travel plans are grounded is by reading.

Do puzzles and learn to live with less.  Spend less and find faith. Practice patience and make ordinary moments seem magical.

Spending hours in the campervan, that’s parked in a driveway,  and pretending we are somewhere in Scotland.

Looking after yourself and dealing with unexpected

Life is full of surprises and unexpected moments. Life is full of ups and downs.  There are twists and turns that bring surprises, happiness and even cause anxiety.  One of the best things we can do is to accept that unexpected things happen all the time.

Self-care is essential, especially while in isolation, and so is de-stressing.  While the media around the world is focusing on what’s going wrong, try to switch off the TV and concentrate on positives.  Don’t let the panic and fear get the hold of your heart.

Don’t treat every day as the same, but find something to celebrate and look forward to. It’s not only the Christmas, Easter and Birthdays that mark special occasions. Be mindful and give extra attention to the little things in life. Toast to the change of seasons, celebrate freshly cooked meal and homemade treats and be thankful for simple messages of love.

I can only hope, once the pandemic is over, that we will choose to frown less and celebrate more. That we will choose to love more and hate less. That we will choose to create more and destroy less.

Just another day in Sligo, Ireland.

…    …    …    …    …    …    …    …     …    …    …    …    …    …    …    …    …    …    …    …    …    …

Now, over to you!

How are you dealing with sudden life changes and living in isolation?

Share it in the comments below!

Posted by

Our Crossings follows the daily adventures of Latvian expats living in Sligo as they surf and explore the world

68 thoughts on “Spring Has Finally Arrived in Sligo + A Quick Our Crossings Life Update

    1. Thanks so much, Glenys. If you told me a year ago I’d be writing an article and coming up with ideas on how to stay positive during the pandemic, I’d probably laugh it off. But here we all are, practising social distancing and trying to avoid panic, avoidance and rash decision. That’s why staying positive and creative is so important. Thanks for stopping by. Love and hugs from Ireland. Aiva xxx

      Liked by 1 person

  1. We also have had to cancel a few travels, Luxembourg, Malta and Scotland to name a few. I suppose we are more delaying them than canceling them but alas, we do what we have to do and what is best for everyone! Jouse projects it is for now…stay safe and stay happy! I’m glad to hear that this time out hasn’t gotten you down to bad.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Just looking at the statistics and number of people who have died in Italy and Spain alone, sacrificing my holidays just to avoid the virus and to stay alive is such a small price to pay.

      Fear and depression can make us feel powerless. That’s why it’s important to focus on what we can control. Like what we eat, for example, or how we choose to spend our days, it all matters big time. Thanks for stopping by. I’, sorry you had to cancel your holidays, looks like a lot of people were planning on exploring Scotland this year. Stay safe. Aiva

      Liked by 1 person

  2. A lovely post, Aiva! Life isn’t all about travel is it, love it though we might? Hopefully we’ll all think carefully before we set out again. Meanwhile you have a gorgeous daughter, and a whole heap of lovely photos to look back on. Love that one of the sea and the rocks! 🙂 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi, Jo, how are you doing today?

      You are so right – travelling the world is an amazing experience, yet there’s so much more to life than that! I love travelling, but I don’t want it to be my only source of happiness.

      For now, we are trying to stay positive and cherish every single moment we get to spend together as a family. I limit how much time I spend watching the news, listening to the radio, and scrolling through social media. Instead, I invest in uplifting. I surround myself with positive media, people, activities, and thoughts. It makes such a big difference.

      Thanks for stopping by. Hugs and kisses from Sligo. Aiva xxx


      1. Thanks darlin! The sun is back so I’m good today. Yesterday was miserable, both the weather and because I should have been going back to the UK to see my son. We have a good group of friends who stay in touch and try to keep each other upbeat 🤣🤣


    1. I’m sorry to hear your trip to Portugal had to be cancelled. Staying positive and during our part, is all that matters right now. We have been asked to come together under extraordinary circumstances to do something out of the ordinary. Staying at home and participating in the specified safety measures with millions of other people from all around the world is all we can do to protect others and get back to business as usual. Thanks for stopping by and stay safe. Aiva


  3. Lovely photos! Sorry you had to cancel your trip, but I’d say you are lucky to live in such a beautiful country. This will make us all appreciate life a bit more when things get better.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much, Pam. Cancelling holidays and staying at home with my family isn’t really that much to ask to tackle the virus and to protect .our neighbours and those most vulnerable. We just have to keep moving forward, and together we’re going to all come out of this. I hope you and your family are doing well. Hugs and kisses from Ireland. Aiva xxx

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Beautifully written Aiva and very well said…great advise and beautiful pictures. Many many happy returns of the day for Ericeiras! Have a very happy fourth birthday! You are a very beautiful little girl! Yes, Aival, we all feel the same way…my street, less than a month ago, was filled with people in the terrace bars and I complained of the noise, now I really miss that noise, the noise of happy people…but it is all for the better good and it is fine with me. We are confined until the 26th of April and then the PM will decide…take good care, you are doing all the right things, we must all keep busy, keep positive, keep sane! 🙂 All the best to you Aiva, and your lovely family!
    Fins ara (until later in valenciano),

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much, Francisco. We spend hours decorating the house and getting ready for Ericeiras Birthday, but everyone cancelled, and we had to postpone the party. But it’s nothing compared to what other people had to invalidate – from weddings to honeymoons to new jobs and starting family. We can always celebrate some other time.

      When it comes to isolation and pandemic crisis – only those who have gone through hardships and have made it through by being patient and rational will understand the meaning of positivity. We cannot allow pandemic to bring us down. We as humans are made to be able to adapt to various conditions, circumstances and situations. And together we can do this. Yes, it could be weeks or even month, but it’s only temporarily, my friend.

      It’s finally springtime in Ireland. And although we are in isolation, I still can hear birds chirping outside, I can feel the warmth of the sun, and I have a family I can lean on when things get unbearable. Thanks so much for stopping by and stay safe my friend. Aiva xxx

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You are right 100%…our countries have gone through great hardships, including world wars in our own lands, so people have learned to be disciplined and to work together. Spaniards have shown great discipline during these days, maintaining social distancing and being ordered and as well polite and kind…and you know something “funny” is that before the pandemic we had early Spring, but since the 10th of March, when we were ordered indoors, the weather has changed to more wintery and the sun has barely showed its face and we’ve had many rainy days as well…it’s strange and at the same time it makes staying indoors a little less harder. I see only the pigeons and the doves flying around wondering where the people are and since all the bars are closed, they get no crumbles! 🙂

        Stay safe, enjoy your lovely family, that is a comfort, I really feel bad for many that I know that are older and they live alone and their whole life was to go to the bar and have breakfast for three hours and chat…

        Take good care, and it is always a pleasure reading your wonderful blog.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. What a lovely post, Aiva and many happy returns to Ericeiras on her third birthday. Next one should see us all out of this terrible period of sadness.

    Your pictures are lovely, as always, and it was especially nice for me to see the full blossom of the whin in your first one. How that brilliant yellow in the hedgerows in Ireland shines out in welcome.

    Take care, enjoy what comes, and look forward to your future travels.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much, Maris. I was delighted to see gorse in full bloom. Gorse is a very common shrub that is familiar to most people in Ireland. They line our country roads and is a joy to photograph.

      I hope you and your family are doing well during the coronavirus outbreak. The crisis will not remain forever, and the world will slowly return to how it was before. However, the real tragedy is if people returned to their old habits, without learning a lesson from this test so that they overcome possible future crises.

      Thanks for stopping by and stay safe, my friend. Aiva xxx


  6. Those who have traveled are lucky to have their memories, photos and video to fall back on. When I am on vacation, the inevitable question comes up, why are you taking a photo of that? Yet, when I get home and complete processing, editing and production, the photo I took makes sense. I am re-editing my 2017 European trip to France, England, Ireland, Nederlands and Iceland. It is a laborious process, but well worth it. Yesterday, I completed the Ireland section and found a photo I took as we drove through Sligo. We had no time to stop and now, thanks to that photo and your posts, I have something to look forward to. When this is over, we will be back to spend some time in your part of the world. It may not be easy, but life will return, just like the spring in your part of the world. I am beginning to think we will not have spring in my part of the world, but who knows. We just have to have hope and faith. Thanks for your heartfelt post Aiva. Allan

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi, Allan, how are you doing? .I’m glad to hear you are staying busy. Looking through the photos and re-editing them is one of the best ways to stay positive because the benefits of photographic time travel can be far more beneficial than we ever imagined.

      Yes, I agree with you, Allan. It may not be easy, but life eventually will return to normal. Being in isolation with the internet on hand makes things so much easier. Thanks to the advent of modern technology, it is easy to video call our loved ones, making us feel more connected. Despite the pandemic, there are still many reasons to stay positive – we are all coming together over this crisis, and we have more daylight, I was going to write – the winter has come to an end. Still, it’s not the case in Canada, so I avoided that sentence.

      If you ever happen to be travelling towards Sligo, please let us know. We would be delighted to meet you guys! Thanks for stopping by and have a lovely day. Aiva


  7. Some of my travel plans have been cancelled or postponed as well. It is disappointing, but being in lockdown is teaching me to appreciate all the small things in life. And to take each day at a time. I am finding more time to write about my past travels and go through (and attempt to organize) all of my pictures. Stay safe.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Being in confinement since early March with my husband and toddler in tow is quite wonderful, and I’m enjoying it very much. I am lucky enough to be where I need to be with the people I need to be with. We’re indoors, staying healthy, and doing our bit not to propagate the virus, and that’s the best we can do right now. Thanks for stopping by and stay safe. Greetings from Ireland. Aiva xxx

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I, too, was planning a trip to the Isle of Skye next month but that has been postponed until the pandemic clears. I’ve been organizing my old photos and finally getting to work on a scrapbook which should satisfy my travel dreaming for now!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m sorry to hear your trip to the Isle of Skye has been postponed. It’s such a fantastic place to explore and photograph and I couldn’t wait to visit with my family. To keep us busy and positive, we read our favourite travel books, learn to bake and appreciate little things in life. Thanks for stopping by and stay safe. Aiva

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Confined indoors and with spring in the air life doesn’t seem that bad after all. Lockdown is a chance to appreciate every little thing we take for granted when rushing around. All we can do is stick to the government’s advice, socialise online and exercise at home. Thanks for reading and stay safe. Aiva


  9. As you might have seen in my blog, I’m re-living previous travels by finally blogging about them: Alaska is nearly finished, the Southwest is still to come.
    Stay healthy,

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi, Pit! Re – living our previous travels by going through the photos and writing about experiences is one of the ways to stay sane during the lockdown. Can’t wait to read about your trip to Alaska as it’s one of the most amazing places on Earth. Thanks for stopping by and stay safe. Aiva


  10. What a beautiful post, Aiva. Thank you for your heart and humanity. I’ve been writing, gardening, walking, cooking, puzzling, reading and capturing photos of our the beauty of nature in my immediate Arizona neighborhood. Sending love and well wishes to you and your family!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi, Mark and thanks for stopping by. Creativity is the best way to stay sane, and so is cooking, capturing photos and gardening. I hope you and your family are doing well during the pandemic crisis. We are in this situation together, the world is still spinning, and this will eventually end. Have a good day and stay safe. Aiva


  11. Great post and yes, positive attitude is so important. I too, have had to postpone my trip to Ukraine (for the third time now!) Besides visiting relatives, I was planning to research my family history for an upcoming book. For now, I’m writing about my experiences living and working in Mexico. And reading other people’s travel stories!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m sorry to hear your trip to Ukraine was cancelled. Everyone I know had to deal with unexpected life changes, cancelled Birthdays, weddings and funerals including. One of the hardest things to do in a world where everything is immediate is to just let yourself experience all the different feelings that arise with living in isolation
      One of the things you and I can do ist to. Allow yourself to feel what you’re feeling without any agenda of speeding up the process. Whatever you are feeling is OK. Take some time to just sit with your emotion and experience it without moving to fix or change it.

      I hope you eventually make to Ukraine and best of luck with your book; it sounds amazing. Aiva xxx

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Those snowdrops look stunning! Nature is all around us, and it’s a shame that we have to be in lock-down when the weather is just starting to get warmer. I sadly had to cancel my trip to Nevada/Arizona for my birthday last month, and now my family’s plans to return to Europe has been put on an indefinite hiatus– if we’re really lucky, we could go in October (but more likely next year…). I was also temporarily laid-off from my job, so I have lots of time on my hands. Trying to write more, doing spring cleaning, and returning to my bookkeeping courses. Hopefully, this will all subside soon!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi, Rebecca, how are you doing? I’m sorry to hear about your Birthday trip. Hopefully, we can all celebrated what we missed during pandemic sometime later in the year. And, yes, I have to agree with you – it is a shame we have to be in lock-down. We waited seven long months for spring and sun to finally arrive in Ireland only to be stuck all of the time indoors. Best of luck with your bookkeeping courses. With over-enthusiastic toddler half attached to my hip, I can only take one day at the time without planning too much. Thanks for stopping by and have a good day. Aiva

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Don’t feel guilty for being mad, Maggie. I’m going through all sorts of emotions on a daily basis too. I can practise acceptance, try to get some perspective yet at the same time not knowing what’s gonna happen or when this will end, leaves me anxious, worried, and everything else in-between. Stay safe guys and thanks for stopping by. Lots of love and hugs from Ireland. Aiva

      Liked by 1 person

  13. We were planning to be where we are for 2 months, while we figured out the rest of the year’s travel and budget. We have no idea what is next, beyond possibly having to take a contract job for a bit to save up funds. We hope most of the shelter in place stuff is done by 4/30, so we can plan better.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. We have no idea what is next, too. The outbreak of coronavirus disease) may be stressful for lots of people. One of the best things we can do is to take breaks from watching, reading, or listening to news stories. Hearing about the pandemic repeatedly can be upsetting and not good for your mental health. Thanks for stopping by and stay safe. Lots of love from Ireland. Aiva

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi, Allison! Glad to hear from you! Yes, using the campervan for imaginary travel helps a lot with living in isolation. At least we can use the internet to check in with our loved ones, neighbours and friends. Sending you lots of virtual hugs. Aiva

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Hi Aiva. Your post has been heartwarming to read. It’s such a difficult time. Your munchkin looks adorable and must keep you on your toes. Take care and stay safe. Warm hugs from Seoul.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi, Cheryl, how are things with you guys in Seoul? Thanks so much, Ericeira sure keeps us on our toes, but it’s so much fun to be at home and finally spend time together. As from today, our lockdown has been extended for another three weeks. At least the weather is nice, and we can still go for a walk. Thanks for stopping by and Happy Easter. Aiva

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Beautiful post Aiva! I’m glad you are keeping safe in Sligo and enjoying the simple things in life. Seeing those lovely spring flowers sure brightens my mood. Your daughter is adorable and I love how you play pretend travel in your campervan.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much. We just have to find ways to keep going. It’s challenging to adjust to new was of life. Suddenly, we are forced to rethink what we value and urged to think about life after pandemic ends. Then again, we are all in the same boat, and as my family is healthy, there’s not much more I could ask for. Happy Easter to you and your family and stay safe. Lots of love and virtuals hugs from Ireland. Aiva

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, so much, but that capacity might fade away very soon. Our lockdown has been extended for a further three weeks, and I miss my family so much. Although, it was expected it doesn’t mean we don’t have a strong distaste towards the situation. What’s the first thing you’ll do once this is over? Have a good Easter weekend! Aiva

      Liked by 1 person

  16. Thanks for such a beautiful post. I love the pictures of the snowdrops. How have I not seen or heard of them before? Sorry about your trip being cancelled. When this is all said and done, I can’t wait to read that you did take the trip to Isle of Skye and see the beautiful pictures that will tell the story of your trip. Until then, stay safe.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. One of the first flowers to dare to show its head in January and February, are the beautiful Snowdrops. Once we see them, we know it’s not long until spring arrives. I hope all is well with you. Our lockdown has been extended for another three weeks, and we have to find more activities to keep us happy and content. Thanks for stopping by and have a lovely Easter weekend. Aiva


  17. So sad you had to cancel your trip to the isle of Skye but it will still be there when this is all over.

    Staying safe at home is all that matters for the timebeing. Hopefully we can all find little things to keep us occupied and content during this time 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I was despondent to cancel the trip to the Isle of Skye because ever since we’ve moved from Scotland to Dublin, which was 13 years ago, I mostly made countless solo trips to Edinburgh to see my friends. This was supposed to be our first trip back to Scotland as a family of three; I was planning for my friend’s kids to meet ours finally. I was eager to show our daughter that we don’t have to travel far to have a memorable trip.

      But as you say, Jason, the Isle of Skye, will still be there when this is all over. Which I hope is soon! Thanks for stopping by. I hope you had a lovely Easter weekend. Ours was very quiet with way too much chocolate. Aiva

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you very much. The yellow ones in the main photo are called gorse, and I love them! With their coconut smell and spiky stems, these pod-like flowers brighten up our days. Thanks for stopping by and have a good day. Aiva

      Liked by 1 person

  18. You and Ericeiras look beautiful in that photograph! The Isle of Skye will be sitting, waiting for you when the time is right. Very little changes in the Western Isles. When you go you should try to take a glass bottomed boat out to see the sea kelp forest. I had already started to think differently about travel before the pandemic and we may stay closer to home than we did in the past. It would take a lifetime to see every part of Texas…
    We visited a serpent sanctuary in Skye before we left Scotland in 2002. My mum had recently died and we fostered a young iguana in her memory (she loved iguanas). Well…that bloody lizard lived for about 18 years with our yearly financial support! The Serpentarium is closed but I will have to write a blog about our beloved iguana.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you very much, Kerry! As a travel-loving family, we are used to ups and downs that sometimes comes with planning and cancelling the trips. At least we didn’t have a big adventure or a honeymoon like other people. And at least we are where we are supposed to be- at home. Few of our family members are still sticking Panama without any possibility to go back home. When I hear or read crazy stories like that, I am a little bit ashamed of complaining about our situation.

      We were about to book the ferry from Belfast to Scotland when just a few days before that our campervan broke down. While we waited for a few faulty parts to be fixed, the Irish government started cancelling non-essential travel. At least we don’t have to go through the hassle of getting a refund; I’ve heard a couple of horror stories regarding that too. All in all, we are very fortunate with how things turned out to be.

      Glass bottomed boat trip sounds like a fun family adventure, I am going to look that one up, in case we get to go one day. I would love to hear the story about your mum and fostered iguana. I hope you gonna write it one day. Thanks for stopping by and have a lovely day. Lots of love from Sligo. Aiva

      Liked by 1 person

    1. What I’ve learned so far, living in lockdown, is that an effective route to happiness is not necessarily through experiences that comes with going on big trips, but rather the small, and often unexpected, pleasures in life. Joy is finally seeing first spring flowers, eating an unlimited amount of pancakes at breakfast, having blue and sunny skies for three days in a row and receiving virtual hugs from friends and family. Thanks for stopping by and have a lovely day. Aiva xxx


  19. You’re right. Now is a good time to try something new.I’ve started to watch the Outlander series on Netflix and have become inspired to visit Scotland and Ireland to get a medieval sense of castle life of that era.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. As we’ve all been stuck at home for quite some time now, I should start watching Outlander too. I’ve heard nothing but good reviews, and it would be amazing to see the beautiful Scottish landscape and its castles yet again. I hope you get to visit both counties one day, you’ll be in for a treat. Thanks for stopping by and have a good day. Aiva


  20. Yes, we too are trying to accept the new normal and do our best. Today, schools started again here in Melbourne. A lot of new procedures for the safety of everyone and with mixed emotions I dropped off my little girl at the school. As you said the only thing that I can wish for with all my heart is may this pandemic be over. And let us all live again freely.
    Thanks for the post. 😊 Take care!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.