Greetings & Blessings to all
We hope this edition finds you and yours in good spirits, good health and good  company.   Belated Happy Victoria Day to all of our Canadian readers and a safe and happy Memorial Day weekend to everyone in the USA. We also hope our friends in the UK are enjoying the annual spring bank holiday. If you’re on the roads, please drive with care  and have a great time of it in-between your journeys there and back. And the same goes for Ireland next weekend!
Since last we wrote, the volcano in Iceland continued to wreak havoc on travel plans for thousands of people. However, some travelers were lucky, including our nephew Eric and his new bride Trish who spent their honeymoon cruising the Greek islands. They managed to arrive without mishap and while their flight home had to be diverted causing a two hour delay, it was nothing by comparison to what so many others had to endure! The happy couple even managed to tour Athens BEFORE all the protests began - talk about the luck of the Irish! 
Inevitably, an eruption of jokes, all puns intended - has followed the fallout. Our good friend Pauline sent us  several and we liked the following one the best: 
Iceland goes bankrupt, then it manages to set itself on fire. This has insurance scam written all over it. 
On a more serious note, the people who live around the volcano are going to suffer the environmental affects for years to come and our hearts go out to them. The same goes for those being affected by the massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. We can only watch, wait and hope  it will be stopped soon. If you live and work in this region, please know we are praying for you and yours.    
Far away from the natural and man-made disasters has been a much happier chain of events - watching  a clutch of eggs develop, and become fledgelings in the now-famous  Owl Box located in San Marcos, California. The link was sent to us by several readers -  thank you! It has been a totally fascinating distraction. But fair warning - it can become addictive! 
And, on a very happy note, congrats to all the grads including our niece Kelsey Rose O’Flaherty. We attended her graduation ceremony last Tuesday night and it’s still hard to grasp that the tiny baby we held when she was first born is now a beautiful young woman. In the twinkling of an Irish eye, eighteen years has come and gone.  
Enough of the blitherin’ - on with the update:(And, if this is your first edition, we hope you enjoy it. Thanks for joining us and please feel free to share our musings and meanderings with your family and friends.)
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News: This will be sent as a separate document
From the mailbag
Quips, Quotes, Proverbs & Toasts
A Bit of the Wit
Joke of The Week
Did You Know
Know Your Writers
The week That Is
Leave 'em Laughing
 For Maureen Dix who was looking for a CD or the sheet music to the hymn, "Walk with me, oh my Lord'" , we had several people send in the lyrics; but that wasn’t exactly what Maureen was looking for.  Jack & Lee Patterson did find several sources for the sheet music here:
Patricia McClure also sent us a source: the Hymn book Laudate, hymn #966 as did George E. Ryan:
Many thanks to all who responded. 
In answer  to Leo who was looking for a  translation of Like Father, Like  Son, Virginia Savage sent us:
Cosúil Le athair, cosúil Le mac .
Thanks Virginia!
And in response to the same request, Dave writes:
As is the case with many English expressions when translated into Irish they don't or might not have the same meaning.  There are a number of proverbs that do relate to the qualities of one generation being visited on the next.  One such is, 'Cad a dhéanfaidh mac an chait ach luch a mharú.'  'What would a son of a cat do, but kill a mouse?'  There are others... all are about the traits of the parent breaking out or coming through in the child... 'Briseann an dúchas trí shúile an chait.'  'Heredity breaks out in the eyes of a cat.' or 'Beireann cearc dhubh ubh bhán.'  'A black hen lays a white egg.'  In all honesty I'd stick with the English... less chance of the stone cutter making an error and fewer letters. 
I suppose  'Briseann an dúchas na athar sna mac.'  'The heritage of the father breaks out in the son.'  Could work.  The last part might be tríd an mac - 'through the son' rather 'in the son' - 'sna mac'  You will definitely want to check this last -  I know it is close to being grammatically correct if not actually correct and if it were to be used in a speech, I would be comfortable with it. However, tattoos and gravestones have a sense of permanency which I find intimidating.  Please,  if possible check with a native speaker or a good translation site.  I suggest the native speaker as it is a good test of the actual meaning and not just the grammar.   If it sounds good to them, then all is well.   
ED. NOTE:  Thanks so much Dave ! We will forward both Virginia’s and Dave's translation to the O’Duill’s in Dublin and get their input. 
Cortney writes: I live with my Irish husband in Carrigaholt, Co Clare. I love to read about Irish traditions and superstitions and in doing so stumbled upon your website. The information is wonderful and yet, in some cases I'm still left guessing or simply accepting. In the instance of May Day and the May Bough, my husband and our dear neighbour call the Gorse Bush the May Bush and we took a bough from said bush May Day Eve to place in the house for May Day.
I'm just wondering if you've ever found any information about the Gorse being used as the May Bough? Thank you in advance. And thanks for sharing all the wonderful information and recipes.
ED. NOTE: We don’t know about the Gorse Bush. Can any of our readers help us out - and Cortney, too?
Otto Anderson writes:  I am  searching for ancestors in or around Longford city. Their last name is McMahan or McMahon. My great grandfather is Thomas Owen McMahon . If you have information on this ancestor, I would be very appreciative. 
Nicole writes: I am trying to locate an Irish saying to engrave on the inside of my future husbands wedding band.  I saw one the other day and did not pay close enough attention to it.  Hindsight is always 20/20.  It something like 'this thee has given thine"...  It's not much, but are familiar with it?  If not, can you suggest something appropriate?
Once again, Dave comes to our reader’s assistance with the following:
If the phrase for the ring is to be in Irish rather than Hiberno-English, I'd suggest... A ran mo chore - O love of my heart, as if addressing him  Mo chéadsearc My first love or A Chéadsearc  O first love, as if addressing him.  Mo shíorghrá - My eternal love.  M' fhíorghrá - My true love
In our last newsletter, we mentioned that the special verse for the month of May  was Marry in May & Rue the Day. We thought that was somewhat ominous so we asked for you to write if you could contradict the prediction:
Syd & Isabelle Nally from New Zealand write: 
Just read your wonderful news letter again and decided to let you know that my husband and I have been blessed with five children and 12 1/2  grandchildren good health and a lot of happiness  and will have the pleasure to celebrate 48 years of marriage on the 12the  of May.
Jeanmarie Schuler from Charlotte, NC writes:
My husband and I were married on May 4, 1968, so it will be 42 years this May 2010.  I never heard the Irish tradition about not marrying in May.  We were married at St David's Catholic Church in Willow Grove, Pa at a Nuptial Mass.  During the Mass, my husband accompanied me over to the Blessed Mother altar to give her a bouquet.  This was pretty traditional at our parish, but what made it unusual was that the groom did not accompany the bride. And,  they certainly did not request the Ave Maria to be sung when they were of the Protestant persuasion. But, this is exactly what my husband wanted.  He loves the Ave Maria and still enjoys hearing it sung. I guess our marriage has been able to survive all these years because we honored Our Lady on that May 4th 1968.
ED. NOTE: Congratulations to these happily married couples and to all those who were married in May and are proving the old superstition wrong!
Hymn to the Fallen
Composed by John Willliams for the film Saving Private Ryan,. Powerful and emotionally stirring. It will certainly put the listener in the correct frame of mind for understanding  what Memorial Day is really all about.
Memorial Day American Soldier Tribute
A deeply moving slide show accompanied by Sarah McLachlan singing In the Arms of an Angel. With many thanks to our good friend AG who sent it in just this morning. Be sure to copy the entire URL into your browser.
World War One - Who's Who 
Click on this link for biographies of Irish people who fought in the Great War:
Memorial Day Link
This site was created to help promote the return of the original intent and meaning back to Memorial Day, to be a central point for finding information on the day, and to provide an online community for people to share their feelings, pride, respect and honor for those that gave their all.
Irish Page
This time around, Jack and Vivian Hennessy offer the  fourth chapter of our story of the dog with 8 legs. It is from a book written and illustrated by one of their  members who is an Irish storyteller.   Please click: 
Rendezvous 353 - The irish Connection
This is a new networking web site created specifically to connect Irish people all over the world. it has lots of features including one we particularly like - hundreds of videos with an Irish flavour.
Win a free Irish ballad
Nigel  is from Ireland and has been playing music and singing for 30 years. He started recording “Custom Irish Ballads ” recently and the demand has become so high that  he decided to  create his own own website. Find out more here:
A Taste of Ireland  -  In Vancouver
Emma Ross raises pure bred Irish Wolfhounds and also offers charming B & B accommodations in a tranquil setting reminiscent of Killarney. Take a look:
Cleaning for a Reason 
Many thanks to Pamela Boyd who sent us the following: 
If you know any woman currently undergoing Chemo, please pass the word to her that there is a cleaning service that provides FREE 
housecleaning - 1 time per month for 4 months while she is in treatment.    All she has to do is sign up and have her doctor fax a note confirming the treatment. Cleaning for a Reason will have a participating maid service in her zip code area arrange for the service. 
Free Mammograms
Do you know of a woman who can't afford a mammogram? Here's how you can help. Go to the Breast Cancer site and click on their free mammogram link; if they get enough clicks , they'll be able to donate at least one free mammogram a day to underprivileged women. It takes just a minute and there's no cost involved:
ED. NOTE: Maria Eryaatz advises that free mammograms are also available in all states via the VNA (visiting nurses association).
Click on 'Find A VNA' for the your nearest location.
Free Pet Food!
Last but certainly not least - our ongoing gift to AG in California and all friends to animals, please click this link today and everyday. It only takes a second to feed an animal. Thanks!
Free People Food!
It only takes a second to feed hungry people, too:
In honor of Memorial Day:
"A nation reveals itself not only by the men it produces but also by the men it honors, the men it remembers." John F. Kennedy
They invented the three-day bank holiday weekend because you can't lump all the bad weather into just Saturday and Sunday.
On board with Sir Walter Raleigh
The Quinn twins were almost identical except that Pat had one huge eye and one normal one, while Mick had one huge ear and one normal one. They both volunteered to join Sir Walter Raleigh in his round the world voyage.
'With my big eye, sor, I can see for miles. I'd be ideal in the crow's nest look-out,' said Pat.
'Agreed,' said Raleigh.
'And with my big ear I can hear even the quietest sound,' said Mick. 'I'd be ideal on deck listening for any talk of mutiny.'
So both Quinns were hired and duly the ship set sail.
Three days out, Pat called from the crow's nest.
'Ship on the port bow.'
Raleigh took out his telescope and scanned the horizon - nothing.
'It's there, skipper, believe me,' answered Pat.
Three hours later a tiny speck could be seen through the telescope.
'My God, what amazing sight you have!'
'Yes, and she's a Portuguese man-of-war,' said Pat.
'How do you know that?' asked Raleigh. 'Surely you can't see the flag?'
'No, sor,' said Pat. 'But my brother can hear them talking.'
1. General John A. Logan, the son of a Scots-Irish immigrant was responsible for the first Memorial Day in 1868 (then known as Decoration Day) and initiated the custom of placing flowers on the graves of soldiers in Arlington Cemetary?
2. More than 130 Irish soldiers were awarded the Medal of Honor in the American Civil War?
3. The famous phrase "War is Hell" is attributed to the Cavan-born American Civil War General Phil Sheridan?
First off,  we owe an apology to our regular circle of Irish book mavens because we did something dumb last time and posted the authors along with the book titles. That’s what happens when you’re in too much of a hurry!’s with a lot more care that we ask for the writers of the following books.  
1. The Irish Brigade in the Civil War
2. Distant Drums: Irish Soldiers in Foreign Armies
3. Clear the Confederate Way!: The Irish in the Army of Northern Virginia
 Please send your answers to:
Don't forget to nominate a favorite Irish site and it would be helpful if you put "Know Your Writers" in the subject line of your e-mail. Thanks!
SPONSOR: Please help us keep your newsletter coming - visit our good friends at Lollysmith:
 'Tis the season for spending time outdoors, so for the garden path they’ve added stepping stones  and new  walking sticks for hiking or a leisurely walk.  New Father's Day Angel Cheeks  arrived, and If you are old enough to remember Mood Rings, just arrived are the latest versions featuring a Celtic design. And for all  all the darts players the Dart Flights now come with barrels  Plus, they also have a  new Darts Gift Set with custom case which would be a perfect gift for a dart playing dad. Happy browsing and shopping  - and they wish all of their visitors and customers a safe and happy summer.
To begin with, the answer to our previous head-banger:
An old king is dying and before he dies he wants to decide who will be the next king: his youngest son or his oldest son. He decides to hold a strange horse race for them both where the owner of the slowest horse will become the new king. He tells them that they must race to the castle and that whoever owns the slowest horse becomes the new king. The youngest son jumps on a horse and starts racing for the castle. The king then knows that his youngest son is the most intelligent and makes him the new king. Why?
A. The youngest son owns the slowest horse, but jumped on his brother's horse.
As always, our Riddle People had no difficulties with the correct answer - but, a  round of applause and a tip of the hat to Steve Healy    who was first in. 
And now for our next skull scratcher: - a classic!
Three salesmen go into a hotel and ask for a room they can share. The clerk has just the thing they want for thirty dollars. The clerk sends them to the room, takes out the ledger, and realizes that he made a mistake. The room costs only twenty-five dollars. Now he has to divide five dollars evenly three ways. Can't be done. So the clerk pockets two
dollars, tells the salesmen that he made a three dollar mistake and gives them each a single. Now, each man paid only nine dollars for his share of the room. Nine times three equals twenty seven, plus the two in the clerk's pocket equals twenty nine. Where's the other dollar?
Please send your answer to:
It would be helpful if you put riddle answer in the subject line. Thanks!
1. SEARCH FUNCTION: Have you tried it out? You can find the search box in the banner on the left-hand side. Simply key in whatever word or words you wish and if they’re on the site, Google will find them!
Please keep in mind that every purchase through our shop links, helps support our efforts. Many thanks in advance.
3.  Article: The Irish Soldiers in the American Civil War
4. Article: The Irish Soldiers in WWI
5. Article: It’s a Long Way to Tipperary
6. Article: Danny Boy
7. Article: St. Kevin - Founder of Glendalough
8. Article: Whitsuntide in Old Ireland
9. Irish Kitchen: Aunt Hettie’s War Cake
10. Basic Irish: The Merry Month of May
ED. NOTE: This will be replaced with a different lesson next week. 
 11.  Kids’ Ireland : The Bewitched Kerry Cow
12. Music Review: Loreena McKennitt - Masked. Mirrored  and Magical
ED. NOTE: Our resident music reviewer William Ramoutar has just sent us a new review which we will post next week. We are also delighted to let you know that his Sunday morning show on Flagler Radio is back on line. You can listen to it here at 11:30 am EST 
13.  May Trivia Contest. Time’s running out!  All entries must be in by midnight, May 31 no  matter what time zone you live in
Our winner for April was Peter Grotsky, USA who chose the dramatic Warrior Pendant generously donated by our friend Kristin, owner of the Celtic Attic:
14.  Circle of Prayer: The  ninth  Novena  in  this cycle began on May 28th and ends on June 5th. A new cycle of Novenas will begin on June 6th and the list will be posted on our Novena web page:
Since last we wrote, we heard from our good friend Mary R who is going through a very difficult time. Whatever your spiritual leanings, please keep her in your prayers or meditations as well Rocky, Russ,  Jim Smith’s friend Jeremy Claring; Laney O’Leary’s friend Harv Carson; Michelle’s nephew Chris;  the Leahy family, Mary Pat McGuire, little Isabella,  Dana Slye- and her mother Kimberly ; Jane Donahue, Mickey, Keyra, the aunt of our friend Carlos, Jeff Minnick’s 3-month old son, Ronnie Kennedy, Hartson Dowd, Burnett McManus’ friend, Christy Banik, Joe Colum, Patricia's daughter Heather, the family and friends of the McTiernans, Laureena Blankenship, Sierra Mitchell, Katie Lacinak and so many others including all those who are suffering from the financial hardships of the economic downturn as well as the effects of extreme weather And please don't overlook our military personnel serving their countries at home and abroad - especiallythis Memorial Day weekend. : Dear Heavenly Father, please keep them safe from all harm and bring those away from home back to their loved ones soon. 
SPONSOR: Please help us keep your newsletter coming - visit our good friends at the Irish Lottery:
In operation since 1988, it's one of the oldest online sites in the world. With subscribers in 89 countries it is also among the most reliable. Jackpots are never lower than US $1,500,000 and are frequently worth in excess of US$5,000,000 Here's the best part - you don't have to live in Ireland to play and all winnings are Tax Free!
It’s always been a fantasy of ours that one of readers would scoop the big prize, but you can’t win it if you’re not in it. Play from the comfort of home here: - and the best of Irish luck to you!
So that’s the the long and the short of it until we write again next month. If you are celebrating a birthday, anniversary or other special event between now and then, we hope it's an occasion filled with joy and happiness.  And if you were married in June, here is your special verse:
Marry when June rose blow
Over land and sea you’ll go.    
We’ll ’ll take our leave with this lovely old blessing:
May soft winds freshen your spirit;
May sunshine brighten your heart;
May the burdens of the day rest
lightly upon you;
And may God enfold you
in the mantle of his love.  And, as they say in Ireland, mind yourself. 
Slan agus beannacht 
Bridget & Russ
Get down on your knees and thank God you're still on your feet!
Celtic Blessing - sung by the St. Coca's Choir, from Kilcock, Co. Kildare
And this is for our dear friend Mary O’Hara who asked us to bring this phrase back:
May you be seven times better, a year from today!!
 in the Irish
Go mba seacht bhfearr a bheas tu bliain o inniu!!
Help us keep our newsletter and the web site free; please send whatever you can to Bridget or Russ Haggerty. Our snail mail address is 5814 Blue Spruce, Cincinnati OH, 45224.  Or  you can send a donation via PayPal. The Url is:
and our account  is this email address:
Many thanks in advance for your kindness.
Send an e-mail to:
or click on this link:
Please check with the Wild Geese - they have a huge listing of events and we don't want to duplicate their efforts:
Irish Abroad also has a comprehensive listing:
If we receive a unique event not mentioned there, we will be happy to list it here.
Cincinnati, OH - June 12
Irish Ceili and Contra Dance-- a Fund Raiser for the new Irish Heritage Center.  Saturday, June 12,  7:30-10:30 pm,  $5. Live dance music by Riley School ceili band.  Snacks, drinks, opportunity to see the renovations to former McKinley Elementary which is now the home base for all things Irish/Celtic in town.  3905 Eastern Avenue.  Plenty of free parking.     
Mijas, Spain -  Now through June 26
Art à la Carte   - An exhibition of a variety of  paintings by three members of the  Andalusian International Artists Group. including our good friend and sponsor Dublin artist Roger Commiskey.. Galeria Aroma Mijas Pueblo. For more details, please click
Stay up to date with all the upcoming events and click here:
Or call 754-281-7202 / 954-432-8292
Los Alamitos, California -1st Tuesday of every month
Friends of Ireland of Southern California Monthly Breakfast. Events are held on the 1st Tuesday of the month. Please call in RSVP to one of the contacts below one day in advance so we can accommodate you.
Barbara Walsh (714) 739-4195 Kathy Wisdom (714) 572-8277
Tom Kennedy (562) 425-2636 Jim O'Dea (626) 965-0307
Portland, oregon - 1st Friday of the month
Ceili of the Valley Society - First Friday of the month Céilís and ongoing Tuesday night Céilí and Sean Nós dance classes. Our season runs from October through June and next season we may be moving the dances to Saturday rather than Friday nights. For more details, please click
With many thanks to “My Ireland”: -  the nickname of a reader - who sent us the following. We hope you find these priceless proverb fill-ins as funny as we did!
 A teacher presented  her students  the first half of a well-known proverb and asked them to come up with the remainder of the proverb.   While reading, keep in mind that these  were supposedly given to  first-graders because the last one is a classic! 
ED. NOTE: We’re more inclined to believe that the kids were a lot older than six year olds, but even if they were twice the age of a first grader, the insight is still remarkable!
 1. Don't change horses... until they stop running.
 2. Strike while the... bug is close.
 3. It's always darkest before... Daylight Saving Time.
 4. Never underestimate the power of... termites.
 5. You can lead a horse to water but... how?
 6. Don't bite the hand that... looks dirty.
 7. No news is... impossible.
 8. A miss is as good as a... Mr.
 9. You can't teach an old dog new... math.
 10. If you lie down with dogs, you'll... stink in the morning.
 11. Love all, trust... me.
 12. The pen is mightier than the... pigs.
 13. An idle mind is... the best way to relax.
 14. Where there's smoke there's... pollution.
 15. Happy the bride who... gets all the presents.
 16. A penny saved is... not much.
 17. Two's company, three's... the Musketeers.
 18. Don't put off till tomorrow what... you put on to go to bed.
 19. Laugh and the whole world laughs with you, cry and... you have to blow your nose.
 20. There are none so blind as... Stevie Wonder.
 21. Children should be seen and not... spanked or grounded.
 22. If at first you don't succeed... get new batteries.
 23. You get out of something only what you... see in the picture on the box.
 24. When the blind lead the blind... get out of the way.
 25. A bird in the hand is... going to poop on you.
 26.. Better late than... pregnant.