Gleefully ghoulish and ghostly greetings to all, God help us!
Welcome to our annual Hallowe’en edition We hope it finds you and yours in good spirts, good health and good company, and if you are a new subscriber, many thanks for joining us - we hope you enjoy our musings and meanderings.
Are you ready for Spirit Night? Here in our Ohio Valley, after a mild Autumn so far, temperatures have plunged and the frost is finally on the pumpkin! Some forecasters are even predicting snow showers for tonight and tomorrow and neither Herself or Himself are ready for winter. But, on a warmer note, for all of you in the southern hemisphere, summer’s right around the corner. We’re envious
Since last we wrote, it’s been th usual havoc in the Haggerty household, but we’re rolling with the punches and doing our best to keep the proverbial chin up - so many people have it far worse than we do. One of those is Cindi Mayti - a multi -talented Celtic musician and artist who has been battling cancer - and winning - for many years. So we were very sad to learn that the latest go round is terminal, Cindy has an amazing attitude and she has asked that her legacy be not just her music and paintings, but also a childrens’ fund inspired by a children’s book she authored - Little Town of Spirals. In her own words: ”My artistic endeavors and work with children have been lights of my life. As part of my legacy, I would like contributions to be made to the Little Town Fund of the Greater Cincinnati Foundation. I created this fund to assist two humanitarian organizations...”You can read more about this at
And to learn more about her book, please click
http://www.matyiart.com/little_town_of_spirals.phpMeanwhile, please keep Cindi and all gravely ill people in your prayers - thank you.
Mea culpa for the incorrect email address in last month’s update. Because of that error, we’re extending the drawing period until December 1st for one of five copies of Cindy Thomson’s latest novel “Annie’s Stories.” This is the second in a series of stand alone novels about Irish immigrants who come to New York City through Ellis Island in the early 1900s. If you would like to be entered in the drawing, please send Bridget an email:
In an effort to replenish our seriously depleted coffers, Herself is compiling a book of Irish blessings. If you would like to pre-order a copy, please send us an email and we’ll let you know when it’s published. In the new year, we hope to follow the blessings book with three more: Jokes, Quotes, and Proverbs & Sayings. Fingers crossed we will get a LOT of interest in these efforts. We’ll keep you posted.
FACEBOOK - ALMOST A THOUSAND LIKES!
We’re not the biggest fans of social media, but because we know it’s popular, we created a page for Irish Culture and Customs. Have you visited? If you approve of our page, please click that Like button - we are just 21 likes away from 1000!. Many thanks in advance.
Enough of the blather...on with the update...
Help us keep your newsletter free. Please visit our good friends at Lollysmith:
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IN THIS EDITION
From the mailbag
A favorite joke
A pithy quote
A bit of the wit
A skull scrambler for our Riddle People
The Week That Is
And last but not least, Leave ‘em Laughing
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FROM THE MAILBAG
A reader wants to know the following:
1. Can you explain the saying "The cows are in the field?"
2. The word dreyken? Multiple name websites that had it, every time, the meaning of the name was simply referencing 'a popular Celtic children's story'. I tried looking deeper into it, trying to find this "popular" story, but I've had no luck. I was curious if you might happen to know the story. The only information I have of this Celtic story is that it is probably for children, there's a character named Dreyken, and he is some kind of Lord of Dragons.
If you can help, please let us know! Go raibh maith agat!
Real ghost photos - Real ghost stories
Hollow Hill is one of the Internet's oldest and most respected sites for ghost hunters. They specialize in haunted sites that you can visit. http://www.hollowhill.com/
Irish Ghosts & Tales from Ireland
Hallowe'en picture for kids to colour
Garfield Scavenger Hunt
Non-stop hungry Garfield searches for chocolate chip muffins and other sweet treats inside a haunted mansion. http://www.garfield.com/fungames/scavengerhunt/scavengerhunt.html
Hungry for more? Here's the sequel:
A BIT OF THE WIT
Paddy was walking through a graveyard when he came across a headstone with the inscription "Here lies a politician and an honest man."
"Faith now," exclaimed Paddy, "I wonder how they got the two of them in one grave."
A PITHY QUOTE
“But dreams come through stone walls, light up dark rooms, or darken light ones, and their persons make their exits and their entrances as they please, and laugh at locksmiths.
Irish horror writer Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu, from ‘Carmilla’
A FAVORITE JOKE
Here's one that's as old and musty as we are - but it's funny all the same - and seems appropriate on Hallowe'en:
Paddy, Sean and Seamus were coming home from the pub late one night and found themselves on the road which led past the old graveyard. "Come have a look over here," says Paddy, "It's Michael O'Grady's grave, God bless his soul. He lived to the ripe old age of 87." "That's nothing," says Sean, "here's one named Patrick O'Toole, it says here that he was 95 when he died."! Just then, Seamus yells out, "Good God, here's a fella who was 145!" "What was his name?" asks Paddy. Seamus lights a match to see what else is written on the marker, and exclaims, "Miles from Dublin."
DID YOU KNOW
1. The Devil's Bit mountain near Thurles, County Tipperary, is so called because Satan, furious at finding no wicked souls in Ireland as he flew over it, supposedly bit a chunk out of the rock in his rage?
2. According to legend, the hair of anyone who swims in the lake on Sheve Gullion in County Annagh will turn grey overnight?
3. For centuries, an unholy ringing sound coming from a gnarled old oak tree on windy nights terrified the people of the County Down village of Kilbroney? In 1885, the tree was blown down and the source of the ghostly noise was discovered - a golden bell hidden in the hollow of the trunk by a monk hundreds of years before.
Help us keep this newsletter free by visiting our good good friends at The Irish Lottery:
Drawings are held every Wednesday and Saturday, so enter now. You don't have to live in Ireland to play, winnings are tax-free and checks are mailed within 48 hours. Do you have the luck of the Irish? Play the Irish lottery and find out! Please click here for full details including a compilation of stats based on previous draws which could improve your chances of winning!
For our next skull scratcher: we have a few groaners the kiddies may get it before you do:
Q. What is a banshee's favorite dessert?
Q. Where do baby ghosts go during the day?
Q. Why do mummies make good employees?
Please send your answers to:
It would be helpful if you put riddle answer in the subject line. Thanks!
THE WEEK THAT IS
1. Article - Samhain - The Irish New Year
2. How the Irish invented Hallowe'en
3. Article: Something wicked this way comes...
4. Article: The Legend Of The Churchyard Bride
5. Article: Creepy Irish Creatures
6. Article: Creepy Irish Castles and Houses
7. Article: The Dullahan - Ireland’s Headless Horseman
8. Article: A Triple Treat for Halloween
9. Article: Ghosts
10. Irish Kitchen: Barmbrack
11. Basic Irish: Halloween and Samhain
12. Kids’ Ireland - The Changeling
So there you have it until we write again. If you're celebrating a birthday, anniversary or other important event between now and then, we hope it's an occasion filled with joy and happiness. In anticipation of the coming week - Pinch punch, first day of the month, White Rabbit! Tied the knot in November or planning a wedding? Here's your special Irish verse:
If you wed in bleak November, only joy will come, remember
And, before we forget - a very belated Happy Canadian Thanksgiving to our friends north of the border who celebrated on October 13th. And, Happy Thanksgiving to our friends in the USA on November 27th.
We’ll take our leave with this timely old Irish verse:
Until cold November is upon us,
and the nights are showing black,
‘Til hot whiskey needs be taken,
and pints too, mostly black,
'Til All Hallow tide has passed us
and Colcannon served no more,
We'll await our next encounter,
with our good tidings to the fore.
Beannacthaí na Samhain do chach neach
The Blessings of Samhain to Everyone!
And as they say in Ireland, mind yourself!
Slan agus beannacht,
Russell & Bridget
Get down on your knees and thank God you’re still on your feet.
LEAVE ‘EM LAUGHING
In the spirit of the day that's in it (pun intended), here are some amusing epitaphs from all over:
On the grave of Ezekiel Aikle in East Dalhousie Cemetery, Nova Scotia:
Here lies Ezekiel Aikle, Age 102.
The Good Die Young.
In a London, England cemetery:
Here lies Ann Mann, Who lived an old maid
But died an old Mann. Dec. 8, 1767
In a Ribbesford, England, cemetery:
The children of Israel wanted bread,
And the Lord sent them manna.
Old clerk Wallace wanted a wife,
And the Devil sent him Anna.
In a Ruidoso, New Mexico, cemetery:
Here lies Johnny Yeast.
Pardon me For not rising.
In a Uniontown, Pennsylvania, cemetery:
Here lies the body of Jonathan Blake.
Stepped on the gas Instead of the brake.
A lawyer's epitaph in England:
Sir John Strange. Here lies an honest lawyer,
And that is Strange.
John Penny's epitaph in the Wimborne Cemetery, England:
Reader, if cash thou art In want of any,
Dig 6 feet deep; And thou wilt find a Penny.
In a cemetery in Hartscombe, England:
On the 22nd of June, Jonathan Fiddle
Went out of tune.
Anna Hopewell's grave in nosburg Falls, Vermont :
Here lies the body of our Anna -
Done to death by a banana.
It wasn't the fruit that laid her low,
But the skin of the thing that made her go.
On a grave from the 1880s in Nantucket, Massachusetts:
Under the sod and under the trees,
Lies the body of Jonathan Pease.
He is not here, there's only the pod.
Pease shelled out and went to God.
In a cemetery in England:
Remember man, as you walk by,
As you are now, so once was I.
As I am now, so shall you be.
Remember this and follow me.
To which someone replied by writing on the tombstone:
To follow you I'll not consent
Until I know which way you went