Wes Fam Visit – Part 1

John and I are on the aircoach headed for the airport to meet Wes and Cari so we can ride the aircoach back to the house with them. They are here visiting for two weeks. Michelle spent and I, well mostly Michelle spent the last few days reorganizing the upstairs to give Wes and Cari our room. We move the girls bunk beds into the guest room, moved the guest room sofa bed into their old room and moved Michele’s office out of our room into the girls old room.

We have a guest room that’s ok for some guests. But when we have a couple come to stay we normally give them our room because it has the bathroom attached to it. Sharing a bathroom with four kids is not the most pleasant vacation experience. And we try to provide the best accommodations to the guests of the millfam lodge.

John and I did not have to wait more than 30 minutes to meet Wes and Cari at the airport arrival gate then we walked across the street to wait for the bus. It was about 20 minutes late and we were the last 4 to board as the bus was full. Around Stillorgan village, we encountered traffic adding about 20+ minutes to our drive home. By the time we made it home they were running on empty and John and I were ready for a break.

Finally made it near the house at the Gallops

We hung out around the kitchen catching up and ordered roymaos for dinner. Our biggest order yet. Wes and Cari and the kids were all in bed before 8; Yeah jet lag. Before flying to Dublin Wes was home in Seattle for 2 nights recovering from a month in China. He’s getting some serious miles this month, and I have no clue how he is awake or what time his body must think it is right now.

City center for a movie

Friday, after dropping the kids at school we took Wes and Cari into city center for a quick tour. On the LUAS run to city center we stopped off at Mima for a coffee and because we had to stop there because of Cari’s name and stuff. Once in City center, John took them to the car park roof at Stephens green shopping center for the view. We’d never been there or knew it was a thing. We’ll go next time I guess. This time Michelle and I were finding each other after splitting up to take Roxi to the toilet and me realizing Michelle’s Phone was not working due to billing issues.


From Stephens Green we walked Grafton then turned right and walked into St Annes Church on Dawson street.  While touring the church trying to be quite one of the priests told us a bit about the church. One of the facts he shared is that Bram Stoker was married in the church. They have a bust of his head next to some info about him. Across the street from the church, we stopped into a massive bookstore, Hodges and Figgis. The bookstore and Church, two more places we’d never visited before.

Bram’s head

We left the Mills and John in city center around noon because we had to head home to retrieve the kids from school. John left them at Dundrum a few hours later for a meeting at work. Wes and Cari explored the shops then took in a just-released Johnny English movie before coming back to us at the house and passing out shortly thereafter.


We started the day thinking we’d go out to DunLaoghaire to walk the pier and the 40 footer. But looking at weather being on the coast tomorrow and inland today sounds like the smarter choice. Wanting to be smart we elected to visit Powerscourt instead. We’ve never been and hear it’s pretty. Powerscourt is a 22-minute ride on the number 44 bus followed by a 35-minute walk all up hill; In the wind. Halfway into the walk we entered the property and were walking in an amazing like park setting with sugar-loaf mountain on one side and a golf course on the other side on a road lined with massive trees.


Before the park, we explored a church and cemetery next to the road while waiting for everyone else to catch up hiking up the hill. Along the road in the park to the house the kids jumped on every stump we crossed by and asked for a picture. Eventually, we made it to the house where we used the toilets. While we were using the toilets Wes snuck into and bought everyone tickets to tour the garden; Thanks Wes! We started the tour with a 9-minute video covering the history of the house and garden going back many many generations.

Following the movie, we toured the grounds. At the start, we split up because we go at kid speed and Wes and Cari go at actual tourist speeds where they have time to look and take things in. The grounds are amazing. Small lake, fountains, Japanese gardens, a stone lookout tower you can climb, pet cemetery, walled garden, the works. Plus an extensive statue collection. The movie said one of the original owners of the house died on European tour purchasing more statues. His son dedicated most of his life to creating much of the gardens in his father’s honour. The subsequent generations have dedicated their lives and resources to maintain all of it.

Looking from the House over the grounds
Looking from the grounds up toward the house

After PowersCourt we rode the bus home and relaxed the rest of the day.

Some more pictures – we like pictures

We asked for Cheez-its
And we received Cheez-its
Michelle trying on a hat
Waiting for the 44 bus to near PowersCourt
First Stop Spar for snacks. Girls asked for a picture in front of the Ice Cream
Church on the way to the PowersCourt
Main gate to the estate and golf course
Khaleesi and Roxi on a stump next to the main gate
Sugarloaf mountain in the background


Leaving the educational movie in the main house, cool looking hallway
Toilet Direction
No ramps because or ADA in the 16th century? Nope
Grotto at the head of the lake
Dead end in the Japanese garden
Rough stacked stone arch in the Japenese Garden
Looking up at the tower
Mills Fam in front of the house
Maddex asks ” why is the water coming out of their mouths” – I said it has to come out somewhere
According to the movie it took 12 years to move all of the soil for the main garden area


View from the top of the tower
Another from the top of the tower
Top of the tower no my face
Headed down the tower, Maddex ran, of course
See, an action shot of him running
Most of the family in a tree
A bit more of the family in front of the house
Checking out the pet cemetery
Walking back towards the house on the way out




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