Monday, June 30, 2014


Red Bull Cliff Diving - Inis Mor



And He's 5 Months


Saturday, June 28, 2014

Strawberry Pickers

Strawberry pickers...don't worry, we're legal. 


Friday, June 27, 2014

A Ride Through The Park


Thursday, June 26, 2014

House Hunters International - Confusion In County Kildare

We know that a lot of people have had questions about our House Hunters International (HHI) experience so we figured we'd do our best to outline it all here.

How it all started:
Having watched HHI for years, we were excited to learn that we would be getting a week-long house hunting experience of our own before the big move. We joked about doing the show and curiously I looked online to see what the application process would be like. Surprisingly, all they wanted was a short email explaining our situation. So we sent them a quick email and forgot about it. Our house hunting trip came and went and we moved to Ireland never thinking twice about House Hunters. 

About a month after our move we got an email from one of the producers asking for an update on our situation and if we were still interested in doing the show. We came to find out that the majority of the episodes are actually filmed after the families move to their international destination. After a few more email exchanges, they had us fill out an application and send a few pictures of the house and our family. Soon after completing the application, we had a phone interview with the casting producer. Throughout the interview the producer kept trying to figure out what our "conflict" would be. They liked the fact that we would be having a baby in Ireland but were really interested in a few of the comments Ryan made about how he missed the seasons he experienced growing up in the Northwest and wanted a break from "hot and hotter" Arizona. After the interview, the casting producer had us film a quick audition tape and a house tour to use in his pitch to management. Soon after, we received word that they wanted to film our story and it all unfolded pretty quickly from there. 

A few short weeks later we traveled to Arizona for a day of filming and then back to Ireland for 3 days of filming. Once the filming was complete, we had a few more email exchanges with the producer and then received notice of the air date. They let us know that we would receive our copy of the show about 4 weeks after the air date which meant we would be watching the show live for the first time with everyone else.

Audition Tape

House Tour

The "real" story:
In our real house hunting trip to Ireland, we only had one day scheduled with our realtor to look for a home. Before even going to Ireland we had emailed her a list of all of our needs and also did a search of our own to find specific homes we wanted to see. On our first day of looking at homes we ended up looking at a total of 10 properties. While some of the homes had cool features (ie. a zip line in the backyard, a dining room with floor to ceiling windows on every side, a sun room, etc.), none of them completely matched all of our criteria. We stayed up late that night going back and forth between the homes thinking that we would have to choose from those options. After expressing our concerns to our realtor, she spent a day reaching out to some of her contacts and ended up finding 4 additional homes to show us on a different day. 

On that second day she hit our requests spot-on and we ended up loving all 4 of the properties. The first home she showed us that day was a 5,000 sf home situated on 15 acres. The 15 acre home had horse stables, cows and sheep on the property, and was completely maintenance free as the owner would take care of all of the yard work for us. The home had 8 bedrooms and never seemed to end. It was a nice house and was filled with old-school Irish furniture but had been sitting empty for about 5 years. The owner said he would have a deep clean done on the home before we moved in so we thought we had found our perfect Irish home. The realtor took us to two more homes that were both amazing and then took us to one more home that she just wanted us to see. The last home didn't look impressive on the outside and we didn't really even want to even go in,  but when we did, we were completely blown away. The house was all-white and had beautiful bi-fold doors opening up the kitchen to the patio. After seeing that last home we were thrown for a loop not expecting to have such a tough decision. Ultimately we had to choose between the "Irish dream" on the 15 acres, or the smaller, pristine American-style home. Although we so badly wanted to go for the big home, the smaller, newer home just felt right for our family. We knew that we would be celebrating the holidays in this home and made the decision to go for the home that seemed to be a better fit for our family of young kids.

Overall, we really did enjoy the experience of filming HHI. Everyone from the producers to the film crew were totally amazing to work with and were so great with our kids. Surprisingly, neither of us have ever had a desire to be on tv. But with the last year having been so crazy with our move to Ireland, having a baby in another country, and traveling the world with young kids, we decided that the show would be a great memento of our journey. There were definitely moments when watching the show where we were closing our eyes wishing they hadn't included certain lines/shots. However, we loved the way it ended, showing that this adventure is all about our family and getting to make those special memories together.


Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Crab Fishing in Carlingford



Sunday, June 22, 2014

Adventures in County Down

Tollymore Forest Park 

Murlough Beach

Ballynoe Stone Circle


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