Only a minibus will do to ferry the lucky 13 family around
THE Mahers are saving to purchase an extra large vehicle to transport their expanded family of 13.
Dad Paul, who works with the Dublin Airport police, anticipates their biggest expense will be a vehicle suitable for almost a dozen children.
"We're hoping to buy a minibus this year," said Paul. "We've got a people carrier and a saloon but it won't be enough with the car seat for baby Sadhbh. That's our main focus now."
When they're travelling from one place to the next, the Monaghan family divide the eldest and most responsible boys between the two vehicles.
The nine Maher brothers include Eoin (12), Cian (10), Darragh (8), Cathal (7), Conor (6), twins Odhran and Oisin (5), Fionn (4) and Cillian (1) along with sisters Aisling (3) and Sadhbh, who is just days old.
But going on holidays proves to be too difficult in terms of logistics and accommodation.
"We don't really go on holidays," Paul said. "The kids have all of their summer camps and everything.
"Even to book a house in Ireland is difficult. The classification of a family is two adults plus two children. So anything bigger than that is nearly impossible."
The last time the couple were away, apart from a short break alone a few months ago, was on their honeymoon, 11 years ago.
"It's not really worth it. We're calling to check in on them all the time," Edel said. "It's also not fair to ask someone to babysit -- it would have to be someone we knew."
However, the family regularly go to sporting occasions, including to see Monaghan in the Ulster football final and local team Carrickmacross Emmets and soccer team Carrickmacross Rovers.