Old black bicycles remind me of Ireland. These vintage cycles are part of our past, and are lovingly referred to as High Nellies. The prestigious title of “symbol of Ireland” is well deserved by these vintage bicycles. So today, let’s explore the role these wonderful old bikes played in Irish communities in days gone by…. Read more here.
Ogham (pronounced oh-am) is an ancient form of Irish writing comprised of patterns of parallel strokes to the side or across a continuous line. Well, that’s the technical explanation of this old Celtic form of communication, but for me the very word brings to mind images of ancient stones pointing skyward in mystical spots throughout the Irish landscape. In today’s post we explore Ogham stones and learn a little about the stories and messages carved on their edges and faces…. Read more here.
Pope Francis has returned to Rome after a hectic trip to the United States, where he was greeted by large and enthusiastic crowds. Traveling to the east coast was not possible for me, but I followed his trip carefully throughout the past week. And so today I thought I might pause, and focus on the messages I gleaned, not only from his sermons, but from his unscripted moments of love and honesty…. Read more here.
This week at the Irish Ploughing Championships a world record has been broken. A very important world record, mind you. The Guinness Book of Records for the Most Cups of Tea Poured in an Hour now rests with the Irish. A fitting home for such a prestigious honor. As you know, we Irish love our cuppa tea…. Read more here.
I love sharing success stories with an Irish twist and today I’m delighted to share some wonderful news of Emerald Heritage’s ongoing accomplishments and accolades. This year Emerald Heritage will reach a global audience of 60 million viewers. Their creative conservation concept has caught the attention of senior staff in PBS Media who have featured their work in two top rated travel programs…. Read more here.
Covered bridges, for me, are iconic symbols of America. Every time I see one, whether on film or in real life, I experience a twinge of nostalgia. When you consider great American bridges you probably immediately think of engineering marvels like the Brooklyn Bridge and the Golden Gate Bridge. However I believe covered bridges should also be counted amongst the greatest bridges ever built in America….. Read more here.
Fairies, pixies and Celtic mythology meld together magically in the glorious childrens’ tales of The Fairly Stillwater Chronicles by Scott Butcher. Today I’m thrilled to introduce this Canadian-Australian author and his enchanting tales that traverse the globe from the southern hemisphere, through the Canada Place, to find illusory answers in the most mystical of all islands, the Emerald Isle…. Read more here.
Let me describe an Irish symbol for you ….. two hands of friendship hold a heart of love beneath a crown of loyalty. I know you immediately recognize this enduring symbol of Irish love. It can be none other than the spectacular Claddagh. Today I’m delighted to host a little giveaway sponsored by the good folks at The Irish Store. The prize is a beautiful Irish Claddagh pendant which I know the winner will treasure…. Read more and enter the giveaway here.
Irish people love adjectives. This may seem absurd at first, but I believe Irish people’s love of descriptors runs far deeper than others’ appreciation of these little words. Over my twenty-something years in America I have come to realize I have an affinity for adjectives many Americans do not understand. My first inkling of this cultural difference came within a few months of my arrival in Elmira, New York in 1988….. Read more here.
Chocolate biscuit cake, also called tiffin cake, is a favorite in Irish coffee shops and restaurants. Made with chocolate and crumbled digestive and rich tea biscuits, it’s a perfect cake for summer. No need to turn the oven on. Here’s my Americanized recipe, using graham crackers instead of digestives, and animal crackers for rich tea. Hope you like it….. Get the complete recipe with step-by-step photo instructions here.
Deep Calling is a new young adult novel by Canadian author J.M. Lavallee. Today I’m thrilled to introduce her work, and participate in her Blog Tour to help launch this tale of the oceans. When J.M. Lavallee contacted me about her new book, I asked if any Irish connection might be found calling from the deep. Well, none other than Manannán Mac Lir, the ancient mythological Celtic sea god, features in this Contemporary Fantasy….. Read more and enter a giveaway for an electronic copy here.
Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way is the longest defined coastal drive in the world, and believe me when I tell you, the scenery is simply spectacular. Last year I shared an infographic on places to visit along the Wild Atlantic Way. But today I’m delighted to share news of a wonderful documentary featuring Ireland’s amazing coastline. For anyone even thinking about visiting Ireland, this show is for you…. Read more and get all the details on how to watch here.
“Hay-foot, straw-foot” was a term my late granny loved to use as we marched around her West Cork farm. I remember asking granny why she said “hay-foot, straw-foot”, and she explained that years ago in Ireland hay and straw were used to teach Irish dancing. Being Irish born I assumed this phrase to be exclusively Irish, but as I investigated further I discovered the term was also used extensively in the United States….. Read more here.
Dancing To An Irish Reel is an intriguing novel about a single American female, Hailey, who leaves the record business in Los Angeles, and relocates to Connemara on the west coast of Ireland. There she meets her love interest, Liam Hennessy, a traditional Irish musician, who in true Irish fashion is scared witless at the prospect of love. Claire Fullerton has graciously offered a signed copy of her book as a prize for one lucky reader….. check out the full post and enter the giveaway here.
Today is a day for the history books in Ireland. Official postal codes are being introduced throughout the Republic of Ireland. Until today, Ireland was a numberless country, toying with global logistics gurus throughout the world, by using personalized addresses with mysterious locations known only by the local postman or woman ….. Read more here.
The thatched roof cottage with whitewashed walls is a powerful symbol of Ireland, often featured on postcards. This quaint, traditional image immediately represents Ireland for many people throughout the world. Today’s post is dedicated to these iconic symbols of Ireland…. Read more here.
In the Ireland of my youth the clothesline dance was learned at an early age. Today electric clothes driers have all but replaced the line, and as a result, we’ve practically forgotten the long lost art of drying the wash. And so, today I thought I should share some of these long forgotten rules of the Irish clothesline … Read more here.
The most popular recipe of all times is for Irish potato cakes. These are the perfect way to use up leftover mashed potatoes, and you can jazz them up any way you like. A dash of curry powder, or chili powder, or chives and onions can add a new depth of flavor to these traditional Irish favorites…. Get the full recipe 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