Popular TV chef Donal Skehan has admitted that his “heart strings start going” every time he comes home to Ireland.
The 32-year-old Dubliner moved to Los Angeles with his Swedish wife Sofie in 2016, and the couple welcomed their first baby Noah last year.
All seems to be going perfectly in the life of the former boyband star, but during a recent trip home he caught up with Today FM’s Ian Dempsey and admitted there is always something special about being back in Ireland. He also spoke about the difficulties he and his wife had in bringing their beloved dog Max to LA.
Skehan said: “We’re loving it out there. I mean, the sunshine’s not bad, it’s nothing to be complaining about.
“But I tell you what, the minute you arrive home on an Aer Lingus flight, the heart strings start going.
“My wife doesn’t particularly love the heat so she particularly likes being back home and enjoying the climate here.
“Our little dog came over very much at the start. That was the most traumatic thing – probably more traumatic than having a baby,” Donal said.
“It was [hard to do] in the sense that there was a lot of organisation, but he had a pet passport.
“You hear horror stories about people transporting pets and he’s been such a big part of our lives. I’m sure there are people rolling their eyes, but we’re dog people.”
After becoming a dad for the first time last year, Donal has created his latest cookbook ‘Meals in Minutes’ which is now on sale.
He said: “As much as this is my job, I still stand at the kitchen presses going ‘What’s for dinner tonight?’ And my wife is going ‘Why do you not know what to cook tonight?’
“I’m always faced with that and I always think that parts of our lives are in the cookbooks. This one in particular, having a nine month old and having moved house – you need to make something quick.”
As an immigrant living in America for the past two years, Donal has been well aware of the political shifts in the country during his stay.
He told the Irish Mirror: “The biggest change for us is when you used to see a big picture of Barack Obama when you come through immigration at the airport – now there’s a big picture of Donald Trump.
“Apart from that and the constant onslaught in the news, you can live a very Trump free life out here in California.
“It tends to be a Democratic state so the conversations you have are more of the Irish view on things.
“Saying that, we’re on a visa out here and we’re constantly getting updates on the immigration process. As much as you say you’re not aware of it, it’s very much looming in the background.”