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Two-Mile-Borris Sensory Garden

Exquisite Sensory Garden at
Two-Mile-Borris, Thurles, Co. Tipp.

A well designed sensory garden epitomises the adage that “gardening adds years to your life and life to your years”. Two-Mile-Borris village, near Thurles, in County Tipperary, is home to an exquisite sensory garden that provides enormous benefits both to its visitors and to the local community.

What is a Sensory Garden?
A sensory garden is a garden that is designed to stimulate all five main senses (sight, sound, taste, touch and smell), and in doing so, has been shown to have many and diverse benefits for its visitors.

What are the benefits of a Sensory Garden?
Sensory gardens are associated with multiple benefits, including having a positive impact on our cognition, physical fitness, creativity, mental health and well-being.
In terms of cognition, building and caring for a sensory garden provides ample opportunities for young and old to acquire new knowledge and skills. Planting and playing in a sensory garden can also help to improve fine and gross motor skills.

When it comes to physical fitness, any gardener will tell you that gardens and exercise go hand in hand, whether you are digging, weeding or simply walking outdoors and enjoying the sunshine. A sensory garden, by virtue of its stimulating design, encourages movement, as visitors explore all that it has to offer by way of touch, taste, sight, sound and smell.

Sensory gardens and the role they can play in supporting mental health and well-being is widely recognised. Different sensory experiences can immediately lift our mood, helping us to feel calm or joy. The very act of sitting outdoors and taking in the sights and sounds that nature has to offer, can help alleviate our stress levels.

For children and adults with sensory processing needs and other special needs, sensory gardens are praised for their therapeutic benefits and the opportunities they provide for sensory stimulation, emotional regulation, language experiences and social skills development.

The Two-Mile-Borris sensory garden, in terms of creativity, is a place of magic and wonder for all visitors. The materials and plants have been purposely selected to stimulate our imaginations, in addition to our senses. Life size insects and fantastical structures provide wonderful opportunities for artistic expression and storytelling, both now and into the future.

Apart from the positive impact the Two-Mile-Borris sensory garden has had on the local villagers themselves; situated beside the local primary school it has now also become undeniably beneficial as an additional outdoor classroom. Indeed, under the supervision of Two-Mile-Borris Development Association, many of the wonderful sensory items within the garden have been either constructed or introduced into this area by the local school pupils themselves, thus making this area, “Their Special Place”.

Where can I learn more about Sensory Gardens?
There is no one design for a sensory garden, but all five senses must be represented and there are certain plants and materials that you will typically find in a sensory garden because of their stimulating nature.

To find out more about sensory gardens why not visit this wonderful imaginative garden in Two-Mile-Borris and explore its selection of plants and materials that aim to stimulate touch, taste, sight, sound and smell.
This garden, like all sensory gardens nationwide, has just three simple rules, (1) No dogs to avoid dog fouling; (2) No alcohol consumption; (3) No smoking.

Two-Mile-Borris Development Association are anxious to emphasise that their local village sensory garden was initially the brainchild of the late Ann Commins. Today it stands as a lasting memorial to her creativity, her total dedication and true community spirit.

Thanks to the work of Liz & Philip Quinn, (Stonemad Sculpture Workshops), Holycross, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.


A special thanks also to Development Association Chairperson Michelle Maher-King & Treasurer Maeve Russell, for their editorial assistance and continued promotion of this truly remarkable village asset.

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Five Great Easter Paper Craft Ideas for Kids

Any activities that can keep the kids occupied over the Easter holidays are always welcome.

Here are five great Easter craft ideas for kids that only need paper, colours, glue, a stapler and scissors.

Remember: Always supervise your child when using scissors and other art and craft materials.

Learn to Draw the Easter Bunny.

“Art for Kids Hub” is a fantastic YouTube channel that provides step-by-step instructions on how to draw incredible pictures.
It gives children a real confidence boost around their drawing and it’s no surprise that kids love it.
Hereunder, is a video on how to draw the Easter Bunny, but there are loads more Easter drawing projects from which to choose.

3D Easter Cards.

We are all doing our best to stay apart at the moment in the fight against COVID-19. More than ever, little tokens to show we are thinking of someone mean so much. Why not make and send a card to someone special this Easter? Click HERE and HERE to learn how to make some really easy 3D Easter cards.

Paper Handprint Bunnies.

This is such an easy paper craft idea and results in a very cute Easter bunny. It’s an ideal paper craft for very young children. View the YouTube link HERE.

Make an Easter Basket.

Easter baskets are a traditional staple of Easter time, used to collect eggs during an Easter egg hunt. Click HERE and HERE to learn how to make an Easter basket.

Paper Bunny Hand Puppets.

This is a really easy paper craft that kids will not only enjoy making, but they’ll also enjoy playing with. Click HERE to view a YouTube video on making quick and easy bunny hand puppets.

Do remember to shop local when you can.

For art and craft materials visit HERE to order online from Stakelum Office Supplies, located at Parnell St. and Rossa St. Thurles, Co. Tipperary. [Tel: (0504) 21888].

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Clocks Change This Weekend.

At 1.00 a.m. on Sunday (tomorrow) morning, 28th March 2021, clocks go forward one hour.

Put simply, we are all losing one hour’s sleep tonight, but the trade-off is worth it.

From tomorrow there will be “a great stretch in the evenings” signaling that summer isn’t too far away. We may not be able to travel far during lockdown, but at least we’ll have an extra hour or two in the evenings to get outdoors.

Road Safety Tips for Pedestrians from the Road Safety Authority, (RSA).

Getting outdoors is vital in maintaining everyone’s mental and physical health, but walkers, runners and joggers remember to always increase your visibility!

Throughout the day, and even on a bright evening, wear a high visability jacket, reflective armband or other reflective clothing to ensure you can be seen on roads.
It’s vital that drivers can see pedestrians from a distance.

In addition, remember to always find a safe place to cross roads, and where there is no footpath; walk, jog or run on the righthand side of the road, facing oncoming traffic and keeping as close to the side of the road as is possible.

Teaching children the Safe Cross Code (see video above) is very important also. For more pedestrian safety tips visit the Road Safety Authority’s website by clicking HERE.

Roll on those lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer!

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Recommended Reads For Children & Teenagers.

Top 5 Bookfinder Resources.

The award winning children’s author Emilie Buchwald is credited with the saying “Children are made readers on the laps of their parents”.

The gift of reading is one that every parent strives to bestow on their child, but finding good books for children and teenagers to read can sometimes be a challenge.

With the Easter Holidays on the horizon and many teenagers still engaged in remote schooling, here are five helpful resources to help parents find recommended reading for their children and teenagers.The gift of reading is one that every parent strives to bestow on their child, but finding good books for children and teenagers to read can sometimes be a challenge.

Lists of recommended reads categorised according to age group and compiled by Irish public librarians are available on the Libraries Ireland website (Click HERE).

BookTrust, the UK’s largest children’s reading charity, offer a fantastic bookfinder resource that enables parents to find their child’s next favourite read by searching according to age range and theme (Click HERE).

Reading Rockets, a superb website of researched based information on literacy learning, enables parents to search through a database of children’s books categorised according to age, genre and format (Click HERE).

World Book Day took place recently on March 3rd and WorldBookDay.com provide a parents’ bookfinder resource available to access HERE.

The New York Times Best Sellers Lists include the following children and young adult categories Children’s Middle Grade Hardcover (Click HERE), Children’s Picture Books (Click HERE), Children’s Series (Click HERE) and Young Adult Hardcover (Click HERE).

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5 DIY Gifts For Mother’s Day.

Where did the idea of Mother’s Day come from?

Mother’s Day is Sunday March 14th next, (forget it at your peril).

Here in Ireland and the UK, Mother’s Day always falls on the fourth Sunday of Lent, owing to its initial Christian origins. Mother’s Day, as we know it currently here in Ireland, certainly is now-a-days more commercial ; evolving as it once did from “Mothering Sunday”.

Centuries ago, people who worked away from home, often as domestic staff, would return home to their Mother Church, once a year, on Mothering Sunday. As well as visiting their Mother Church, people would visit their home and their mothers.

Over time, the practice of bringing a gift of flowers to one’s mother became tradition. Eventually, Mothering Sunday developed into Mother’s Day and quite rightly the celebration of Mothers as we know it today.

DIY Gifts for Mother’s Day.

Lockdown has placed limits on the gifts many of us typically purchase for Mother’s Day. With shops closed and movements restricted, many of us are turning to DIY gifts for Mother’s Day.
Hereunder are 5 DIY gift ideas to help acknowledge and celebrate our wonderful Mums, demonstrating our appreciation for everything they do for us.

(1) Create a Mother’s Day Chocolate Bar Poem.
This is a thrifty, but thoughtful, gift that costs no more than the price of a few chocolate bars. Follow this link HERE for examples and ideas for your own Chocolate Bar Poems.

(2) A Homemade Bouquet of Flowers.
Spring is here and with it has arrived some of our most cherished flowers. Of the many flower varieties on view in our gardens at present, the daffodil and tulip are great choices for a homemade bouquet or flower arrangement. Alternatively pick up some flowers in your local supermarket and combine them into a homemade arrangement.
Visit YouTube for lots of tips on homemade bouquets and flower arranging. Click HERE to find a video specifically dealing with the arranging of daffodils and tulips.

(3) Bake Something Sweet.
There’s nothing quite like home baking and many of us are baking more during lockdown. Why not treat Mum to a delicious cake, some cupcakes or some cookies for Mother’s Day? If you are looking for great baking recipes check out Cupcake Gemma on YouTube HERE.

(4) Cook Mum A Special Meal.
There’s nothing like getting served up a delicious meal. In many houses Mums do a lot of the cooking so why not give them a day off from cooking meals on Mother’s Day? You could treat your mum to breakfast in bed, a brunch or a delicious dinner. If you’re looking for recipe ideas, check the YouTube Channel of Wexford born Gemma Stafford. Now living in the USA, Gemma’s Cooking channel is one of the most successful on YouTube with 2.55 million subscribers. View HERE.

(5) A Homemade Mother’s Day Card.
Any mum will tell you that a Mother’s Day card with a heartfelt message is always treasured. Check out this great YouTube video with 24 ideas for incredible and easy to make Mother’s Day cards using everyday materials. Check this out by clicking HERE

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