Greetings & Blessings to all
Welcome to our February edition. We hope it finds you and yours in good health, good spirits and good company. And, if this is yoir first edition, many thanks for joining us. Also, if you like our musings and meanderings, please feel free to share them with your family and friends.
Since last we wrote, winter finally showed up in our Ohio Valley with brutally low temperatures and several inches of snow; nothing like they have in New England and we just heard the St. Patrick’s Day parade in Boston may be cancelled because of all the snow still in the streets.  That has to be a first. Let’s just hope and pray there’s still enough time to get the streets cleared out enough  for the festivities to go on. We're alsp saaying lots of prayers that all of our readers who live in the North Eastern part of the US are okay and surviving this record breaking einter. 
On the bright side, according the calendar, the countdown to the official beginning of spring has begun - only three weeks to go. And we’re also counting down to St Practice Day at our son’s pub - the B-List in Bellevue. It’s always on the Saturday closest to St Patrick’s Day , so this year it will be March 14. We usually go early to indulge in a traditional Irish breakfast served up by the chef of a local restuarant - his soda bread is among the best we’ve ever tasted. So, if you live in our area, may be we could meet up?
Our dollar drive is off to another slow start - just seven contributions thus far. But we’re still optimistic that we will receive enough to pay for our out of pocket expenses.  No donation is too small - a euro, dollar, pound or whatever your currency  would be so welcome,  AND, to sweeten the pot, when we receive your contribution we will put your name in Russ’ old top hat for a chance to win a CD, book or whatever other incentive we can come up with! Drawings will be held on St. Patrick’s Day. And again, many thanks in advance for your kindness.
Contributions can be made via PayPal:
Our account there is this address:
or by Snail Mail:
5814 Blue Spruce
Cincinnati OH 45224
Our “likes” continue to increase. Thank you! Each day we post what we hope will be something of interest about Ireland and/or the Irish. If you haven’t yet visited our page please take a look and “like” us   - but only if you really do.  
Progress is slowly being made on both of our projects, albeit, very slowly. Many have asked how much the Blessings book will cost - we really don’t know for sure. We’re guessing somewhere between $5 and $10. We may have a better idea next time we write.  As for Russ’ sequel, without trying to sound mysterious, ‘sequel’ may not be the correct word. We will keep you posted.
Enough of the bltherin’, on with the update! 
SPONSOR:  This newsletter is being brought to you by the following contributors
Go raibh maith agat to  the McTiernans, K  Hannigan, L Logan, C O’Brien, T O’Flaherty, S Pallante & H Jennings. Your gift is an affirmation that we should keep going. Bless you!
A Pithy Quote
A Bit of the Wit
A favorite Joke
Did You Know
Web Site Update
Leave Em Laughing
 We didn’t send out a special Valentine’s Day edition, so here are some romatic links from last year: 
Dear St. Anne, send me a man, a good one if you can
The title of just one of many RTÉ videos devoted to romance in Ireland. We hope you are as thoroughly entertained as we were!
Irish St. Valentine's statue hears lovers’ wishes
Video clip filmed at the church in Dublin where the saint’s remains are kept
One of our all-time favourite Irish love songs, Bridget first heard it being played in the gift shop at Blarney Castle - and had to have it. “What is that lovely song?” she asked the young girl behind one of the counters. “Oh, that’s Grace by Jim McCaan. Just go to the recordings department and ask for number 143.” Bridget  replied, “I just say 143 and they’ll know what I want?” Oh yes, they’ll know.”  They did.
Gra Mo Chroi - The Love of My Heart
Sung in Irish - but with subtitles. The photos of Ireland are breath-taking
Air - You're The One  Our daughter's bridesmaids walked down the aisle to this beautiful melody performed by the Chieftains. If it sounds familiar, it's from the movie Circle of Friends. In this clip, a tour of Dublin accompanies the music. Enjoy!
Are Irish People Romantic?
Lauren from Gaelic Girls TV asks the question of a  wide variety of Irish people
The Line: Do Irish men put in the effort?
It’s all about romance and in this video you’ll see and hear the answers to the question.
SPONSOR: Help us keep your newsletter going. Please visit our good friends at Lollysmith:
St Parick’s Day  is upon us and they have what you need to proudly display your Irish heritage including caps, ties, lapel pins, walking aticks and more! They also stock a wide range of  other merchandise  including  Jewelry, Shamrock Seeds, Connemara Marble, Tin Whistles, and Bodhráns. Whatever the occasion, you can rely on Lollysmith to have what you are looking for.  Please click:
"The proper basis for marriage is mutual misunderstanding."
Oscar Wilde  
"There's one thing about a late marriage - it doesn't last long."
Elderly Irishman on RTÉ talking about Courting in the 1940's.
 As is often the case, we are indebted to Hartson Dowd for sending  us this very funny joke - at least we think it's funny. We hope you do, too.
In a city park, in Dublin, stood two statues, one female and the other male. These two statues had faced each other for many years. Early one morning, an angel appeared before the statues and said, "Since the two of you have been exemplary statues and have brought enjoyment to many people, I am giving you your greatest wish. I hereby give you the gift of life. You have 30 minutes to do whatever you desire." And with that, the statues came to life, smiled at each other, ran toward some nearby woods and dove behind a couple of bushes. The angel smiled to himself as he listened to the two statues giggling, bushes rustling and twigs snapping. After 15 minutes, the two statues emerged from the bushes, smiling. Puzzled, the angel looked at his watch and asked the statues, "You still have 15 minutes. Would you like to continue?" The male statue looked at the female and asked, "Do you want to do it again?" Smiling, the female statue said, "Sure. But This time you hold the pigeon down and I'll poop on its head!"
SPONSOR: Please help keep our newsletter going -visit our friends at the Celtic Attic
Happy St. Patrick’s Day!  Would you like to get 5.00 off your order at the Celtic Attic?  Place an order between now and March 12th and use code 5off on orders of $25.00 or more, to get 10% off any size order use code tenp.  We will send you a link to a survey when your order is completed so you can give us your thoughts on our new shopping cart and our website in general or 
Also, we are giving away a St. Patrick’s Day basket.You only need to enter once and you are automatically entered in this contest as well as our normal monthly contest for 2 Irish Pendants.
For phone Orders, please call: (360) 531-1107 10am to 5pm PST Week Days
1. A man should always be the first to wish joy to the bride - never a woman?
2. It was also unlucky if a bride and groom washed their hands in the same sink?
3. A traditional irish proposal was "Would You like to hang your washing next to mine?"
Source: The Traditional Irish Wedding by ...Her Self! Signed, inscribed copies still available!
And now for our first Noggin Nagger in quite a while:
Assign every letter of the alphabet its numerical value: A=1, B=2, C=3, and so on, up to z=26. Now,  can you think of a familiar 7 letter word whose letter values total only 21?
Hint: It's a popular Irish edible.
1. Article - Irish Music & Instruments
2. Article - Ireland Genealogy: An Expert's Adventure
3. Article - Is Your Shillelagh a Sham?
4. Article - An essential guide for the first-time traveler to Ireland
5. Article - Counties of Ireland - Carlow
6.Poetry Corner:  Thomas Moore
7. Irish Kitchen - Recipes for the Lenten Season
8. Basic Irish - Lent & Easter
7. Kid’s Ireland - The Salmon of Knowledge
8. Music Review - This time around, our resident reviewer, William Ramourar gives us The Ultimate Guide to Irish Folk - watch for it this weekend.

SPONSOR:  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!
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 tomorrow - Pinch punch, first day of the month, White Rabbit! Tied the knot in March or planning to marry? Here's your special Irish verse:
If you wed when March winds blow
Joy and sorrow both you'll know
We’ll take our leave with this timely old Irish verse:
 And as they say in Ireland, mind yourself!
May the saint of romance
intercede on your behalf
and God grant you
the love and affection
of a true Irish heart.
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.
Téigh ar do ghlúine is bí buíoch le Dia go bhfuil tú fós ar do chosa.
If falling in love is anything like learning how to spell, I don't want to do it. It takes too long." -- Glenn, age 7
 "I think you're supposed to get shot with an arrow or something, but the rest of it isn't supposed to be so painful." -- Manuel, age 8
"No one is sure why it happens, but I heard it has something to do with how you smell. That's why perfume and deodorant are so popular." -- Mae, age 9
"Love is the most important thing in the world, but baseball is pretty good too." -- Greg, age 8
"Once I'm done with kindergarten, I'm going to find me a wife." -- Tom, age 5
"On the first date, they just tell each other lies, and that usually gets them interested enough to go for a second date." -- Mike, 10
"I'm in favor of love as long as it doesn't happen when Dinosaurs is on television." -- Jill, age 6
"One of the people has freckles, and so he finds somebody else who has freckles too." -- Andrew, age 6
 "It gives me a headache to think about that stuff. I'm just a kid. I don't need that kind of trouble." -- Kenny, age 7
"One of you should know how to write a check. Because, even if you have tons of love, there is still going to be a lot of bills." -- Ava, age 8
"When somebody's been dating for a while, the boy might propose to the girl. He says to her, 'I'll take you for a whole life, or at least until we have kids and get divorced.'" -- Anita, 9
"I'm not rushing into being in love. I'm finding fourth grade hard enough." -- Regina, age 10
 "A man and a woman promise to go through sickness and illness and diseases together." -- Marlon, age 10
"[Being] single is better . . . for the simple reason that I wouldn't want to change no diapers. Of course, if I did get married, I'd figure something out. I'd just phone my mother and have her come over for some coffee and diaper-changing." -- Kirsten, age 10
"Love will find you, even if you are trying to hide from it. I been trying to hide from it since I was five, but the girls keep finding me." -- Dave, age 8
"You should never kiss a girl unless you have enough bucks to buy her a big ring and her own VCR, 'cause she'll want to have videos of the wedding." -- Jim, age 10
"If it's your mother, you can kiss her anytime. But if it's a new person, you have to ask permission." -- Roger, age 6
 "The rules goes like this: if you kiss someone, then you should marry her and have kids with her. It's the right thing to do." -- Howard, age 8
(on seeing a couple kissing) "He is trying to steal her chewing gum!" -- Boy, age 6
"Beauty is skin deep. But how rich you are can last a long time." -- Christine, age 9
"It isn't always how you look. Look at me. I'm handsome like anything, and I haven't got anybody to marry me yet." -- Brian, age 7
 "Lovers will just be staring at each other and their food will get cold. Other people care more about the food." -- Brad, age 8
"They act mooshy. Like puppy dogs, except puppy dogs don't wag their tails nearly as much." -- Arnold, age 10
"Romantic adults usually are all dressed up, so if they are just wearing jeans it might mean they used to go out or they just broke up." -- Sarah, age 9
"It's love if they order one of those desserts that are on fire. They like to order those because it's just like how their hearts are -- on fire." -- Christine, age 9
"See if the man picks up the check. That's how you can tell if he's in love." -- John, age 9
  "Married people usually look happy to talk to other people." -- Eddie, age 6
"You got to find somebody who likes the same stuff. Like if you like sports, she should like it that you like sports, and she should keep the chips and dip coming." -- Allan, age 10
"No person really decides before they grow up who they're going to marry. God decides it all way before, and you get to find out later who you're stuck with." -- Kirsten, age 10
Making People Fall In Love With You:
"Tell them that you own a whole bunch of candy stores." -- Del, age 6
"Shake your hips and hope for the best." -- Camille, age 9
"Yell out that you love them at the top of your lungs...and don't worry if their parents are right there." -- Manuel, age 8
"Don't do things like have smelly, green sneakers. You might get attention, but attention ain't the same thing as love." -- Alonzo, age 9
"One way is to take the girl out to eat. Make sure it's something she likes to eat. French fries usually works for me." -- Bart, age 9
 Good Advice About Love:
"Dates are for having fun, and people should use them to get to know each other. Even boys have something to say if you listen long enough." -- Lynnette, age 8