When you dream of an Irish vacation, your mind probably conjures up images of stone castles, ancient archaeological sites, and breathtaking scenery. You may not think of Ireland as a premier destination for outdoor water activities, but being an island dotted with magnificent lakes and rivers, Ireland is the perfect destination for water enthusiasts…… Read more here.
Irish pubs are renowned the world over for their warm welcome and atmosphere. Traditionally the Irish pub was a community center, used as a gathering place where people could chat, tell stories, and share a drink or two. Mother of two, Catriona Mulhern from Donegal has launched a new business idea in Ireland and the United States. Pop Up Pub offers the real Irish pub experience right in your own back yard…. Read more here.
Ireland is a land of magnificent scenery. But did you know a trip to Ireland is not merely a feast for the eyes? The Irish countryside not only stimulates the visual senses, but can at times over stimulate the olfactory nerve. Yes! That poor old nerve, that carries our sense of smell, works overtime when traveling around rural Ireland during the summer months. I know my blog post title might lead you to believe I’m going to wax poetically about the scents of newly cut turf in the bog, the delightful aromas of a freshly mown meadow, or the bracing sea air as you wander down one of Ireland’s many piers. But hold your breath! These are not the only airs you shall inhale on a tour of my homeland…. Read more here.
Irish-American author Scott D. Pomfret draws on a rich vein of faerie realism in his new book, The Hunger Man. This novel places the Great Irish Famine in stark relief, making it a compelling retelling of Ireland’s defining disaster. On behalf of Waterford-based publisher Ninestar Press, I’m delighted to introduce you to Scott, and his new novel. Before we delve into a synopsis of the plot, let me first hand you over to Scott, a Boston based attorney, who will share his family story and love of Ireland…. Read more here.
Tea and scones with butter and jam – it’s a yummy Irish afternoon treat. When I’m in Ireland I can whip up a batch of scones in double quick time, and I’m guaranteed success every time. Now, I make two kinds of scones. Irish raisin tea scones without buttermilk, or my granny’s favorite Irish buttermilk scones. Traditional Irish buttermilk soda scones used three simple ingredients, flour, baking soda and buttermilk. No eggs, no butter, just a simple dough which rose to tender perfection when cooked over an open fire in a cast iron bastible…. Read more and get my recipe tweaked for baking success in America here.
Fulfilling the role of mother of the bride is not simply a wedding day duty, but a life changing family journey. Mothers of the bride navigate the world of wedding planning, satin, tulle, family and in-law dynamics, all the while evolving into a bridal coach extraordinaire. Today I’m delighted to introduce a new book by Cheryl Barker, a writer from Kansas who has followed my blog since its beginnings, always offering words of encouragement along the way…. Read more and enter the giveaway here.
Wise old words from Ireland abound, and Irish blessings and sayings for weddings are no exception. Some are heart warming and tender, some are witty and charming, but all sincerely express wishes of love and happiness for the lucky couple. In today’s blog post, I give you a world of Irish marriage wishes at your fingertips. Or better still a world of Irish wedding blessings on the tip of your tongue, so you can rhyme them off at will, as you wish the happy grooms and brides the very best for their future lives together…. Read more here.
In this little corner of the world wide web we love to discuss all things Irish. Ireland is in our hearts and in our souls. It captivates us like no other place on earth. And so today, let’s delve a little deeper into what it means to be Irish, and see if we can touch a little on what “the essence of being Irish” really means. I am eternally grateful to readers of my website, who come back again and again to read my writings. It’s lovely to know I am not the only one intrigued by our Irishness. So together, let’s discover a little bit about the essence of being Irish….. Read more here.
Happy 4th of July! I LOVE America’s birthday. It’s wonderful how it lands at the beginning of hot and steamy July, perfect for family get-togethers, barbecues, and having good old fashioned fun. While we all recognize the Fourth of July as the most patriotic of all American holidays, it’s also the most nostalgic and sentimental holiday of the summer. Despite being born in Ireland, I have become an American citizen, and embrace this annual celebration. I thought today would be fitting to share my photos of American pride, together with ten reasons why I love Independence Day…. Read more here.
Summer’s here – time for skipping stones across the water. Every child should learn to throw a stone in a smooth, gliding arc so that it ricochets across the surface of a lake or the still ocean. Do you remember how your heart seemed to pause as you counted each hop of a rock you tossed toward the horizon? And so today, I’m going to share a little secret. I know a corner of the world where the beaches and rocky shoreline overflow with flat, oval stones, just perfect for hopping on the water…. Read more here.
In the west of Ireland furrowed fields hug the coastline. Many a passer-by pays little to no attention to this ridged farmland, totally unaware these markings are the remnants of our ancestors’ toil. Referred to as lazy beds, these scars on the Irish countryside are evidence of an abandoned system of potato cultivation that once supported generations of Irish people, before the devastation of the Great Irish Famine…. Read more here.
Irish clans are traditional family or kinship groupings that share a common surname and heritage. The Irish last names we bear so proudly are handed down to us from our fathers. So, I thought Father’s Day would be the perfect time to explore our Irish clans and crests. And to really help us celebrate Father’s Day, Brendan McCarey of Painted Clans, an artist based in County Monaghan, is offering a wonderful framed, single Irish crest, piece of artwork for one lucky reader to win….. Read more and enter the giveaway here by June 26th.
Irish people love floury potatoes. But once we leave our native shores, most people have no idea what on earth we are talking about when we ask for floury potatoes. And so, today I plan to answer the all important question… What is a floury potato?…. Read more here.
Summer is here and lemonade season is upon us. Every time I squeeze a lemon for juice, I smile and think of the old proverbial saying …”When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.” What an encouraging, optimistic, can-do phrase, loved throughout America! Today let’s explore the origins of this phrase and let me introduce you to the Irish version of the lemonade philosophy…. Read more here.
Captain Cillian is a friendly sailor from Ireland, who loves to explore the oceans with his mates. Today, I’m delighted to introduce you to this fun and educational Irish seafaring character for children. And good news! There’s a fun kid’s adventure pack giveaway at the end of today’s post. But first, let’s learn a little bit more about this friendly Irish sailor…. Read more and enter the giveaway here.
The Triads of Ireland refer to a collection of early Irish proverbs presented in threes. Here’s an example of an Irish triad … “Three things which justice demands: judgment, measure, conscience.” First compiled in the 9th century these usually wise words comprise three items that share a memorable trait….. Read more here.
Lissadell House is a magnificent Georgian home in County Sligo, where the Gore-Booth sisters, Constance and Eva, once passed their childhood summers. Despite her privileged upbringing, Constance played a pivotal role in the Easter Rising of 1916. Yeats, a frequent visitor to Lissadell penned a tribute to these sisters, a poem I vividly remember learning off-by-heart as a school girl in Dublin. Here’s a little snippet… Read more here.
This month Skellig Michael reopens for the summer season. This craggy island is ready to welcome tourists to climb its rocky steps, and to explore the ancient monastery built upon its stony ledges. Beehive huts and stone oratories, constructed by monks of olden days, have stood the test of time, and now bear witness to their builders’ self sacrifice and eagerness to live solitary and devout lives…… Read more here.
Last year we explored the history and cultural significance of Irish Famine Pots, the giant cast iron vessels created to cook massive volumes of soup to feed the starving Irish in 1847, the bleakest year of the Great Irish Famine. I’m delighted to report the completion of a new documentary film about the preservation and historical significance of these cast iron pots. Today, one lucky reader will have an opportunity to win a copy of this DVD…. Read more and enter the giveaway here.
Dublin’s iconic Ha’penny Bridge turns 200 years young this week. The bicentenary of the opening of this ornate, metal, pedestrian bridge was celebrated on May 19th, 2016. And so, I thought today I might share some photos of this magnificent structure that elegantly spans the River Liffey, connecting the north side and the south side of my hometown, Dublin….. Read more here.
“My Ireland” is a place of love which invokes a deep sense of identity. “Mother Ireland”, as we so lovingly call her, will always influence my state of mind, no matter where I wander.
She instills in me a life-long feeling of connection. “My Ireland” is a collection of stories and memories that have shaped my life.
“Memories, converted into stories,
can become a monument of sorts
to the remembered.”
– Christy Kenneally
“My America” is a place of acceptance, which invokes a deep sense of pride. I have chosen to live in a small state in the heartland of America. In Kentucky, we live outside the limelight, and may not be considered part of “mainstream” America.
Here I present the stories and images of “My America” – Smokey Mountains, natural wonders, and great rural beauty. I have learned we are as integral a part of the ‘Real America’, as our more famous urban neighbors. Welcome to my American Dream.
Slán agus beannacht!
(Goodbye and blessings)
Irish American Mom