“Nollaig Shona agus Athbhliain faoi Mhaise Daoibh.”
Merry Cheistmas and a Happy New Year!
Greetings & Blessings to all,
We hope this special Christmas edition finds you in good health, good spirits and good company. As for ourselves, we’re almost ready for the big day and our grandchildren as with all kids everywhere  are beside themselves with excitement. If you’re a fan of the popular American  film A Christmas Story, based n the book by Jean Shepherd, you will be familiar with the quote “the ecstasy of unbridled avarice” - that magical time in a child’s ’s life when it was okay to wish for everything in the whole world - or at least in our now grown kids’ day - everything in the Sears Wishbook for the Christmas Season...
It arrived a month or so before Christmas and heralded hours of blessed peace and quiet as our offspring pored over every page, marking what they wanted Santa to bring them. Since they marked just about every toy in their age bracket, it wasn’t of much help to parents who weren’t in any position to buy them anything they asked for. There were years though when a single wish could be granted - that first two-wheeler bike or the ballerina doll that would actually do a pirouette when you pressed the crown on her head.  Thank God our kids never asked for BB guns or ponies. Now they have children of their own - but sadly they won’t see the kind of wishbook their parents enjoyed  30 or 40 years ago.  To bring back memories or see what it was like, take a look at this link: How Sears made our Christmas AWESOME
Onwards: We received our first Christmas card featuring the The Three Wise Men. According to an old custom, one is supposed to place the card over the front door (on the inside) and this will bring good luck and prosperity in the coming year. Just in case you don’t get one in the mail, we are sending you one that you can print out. God only knows all of us can use all the good luck and prosperity we can get these days! To get your card, please click on this link:

Christmas in Dublin 
Video put together by the Dublin Covention Bureau with a very tranquil Silent Night accompaniment::
Give Up Yer Aul Sins: The Birth of Jesus
This is episode three of an award winning series by Brown Bag Productions. The episodes based on the 1960s recordings in Dublin of young children telling Bible stories in a classroom to their schoolteacher. We can almost guarantee that once you’ve seen one, you’ll want to see them all. Enjoy!
Joy to the World - Joe McPartland
It’s with great pleasure that we share this particular link with you. Joe and his lovely wife Peggy have been faithful and supportive readers of our newsletter for many years. Here, Joe is accompanied by a Chorale and full orchestra - it’s well worth a listen:
We had hoped to do an article on the McPartland’s this past year - sigh. God willing, we’ll succeed in 2013!
Irish Christmas ad 
A beautifully done ad on a par with the Guinness in the snow or  the American Budweiser Clydesdale commercials:
Christmas according to the young and old
An RTÉ radio segment featuring the Christmas memories and impressions of both seniors and children. Be sure to turn on your speakers:  
Jingle Bells sung in Irish by children
A lovely Christmas card for you to forward to family and friends from Gailge.ie. This should put you in the spirit!
Some joy for the day that’s in it
We hope you are as delighted watching this as we were: (Be sure to have your speakers turned up)
Fiddle Tree
One of our all-time favorite greetings - and joy, oh joy, it's still available:
Irish Page - Dha Lá Deag na Nollag - 12 Days of Christmas
This time around, Jack & Vivian present The Twelve Days of Christmas in Irish with an English translation
Loca - the Irish pup singing 'The pug that couldn't run'
It’s not about Christmas but it’s so cute and funny, we thought you might enjoy it:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x2RJN9a_jdMe r   
And one more link your editor couldn't resist including
It took many years to make its debut, but finally, The Book: Potion, Pope & Perfidy is now available on Kindle. If you’d like to check it out, just visit amazon’s Kindle store
Naturally, we’re hoping it will be a best seller - with your help, it would be off to a very good start!  And thanks in advance for taking a look! 
So there you have it until we write again.  We’ll take our leave with this lovely old blessing:
May God grant you lightness in your step, a smile on every face you meet;
Loved ones gathered at your hearth, and at your door, good folk to greet;
A holy hymn upon your lips, a window candle burning bright,
And may the Good Lord bless your heart and come to dwell there Christmas night.
And as they say in Ireland, mind yourself!
Slan agus beannacht leat! 
Bridget & Russ
Get down on your knees and thank God you’re still on your feet. 
Téigh ar do ghlúine is bí buíoch le Dia go bhfuil tú fós ar do chosa
IrishBlessing/For every storm, a rainbow

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Grandsons Beckett and Dashiel making merry!  May it be so for you and yours!