Welcome to the Irish Culture & Customs newsletter which is published every weekend and sent out to nearly 1300 readers all over the world. You are receiving this newsletter because you signed up for it - God Bless you! If you'd like to read past issues, they are archived at: http://www.yourmailinglistprovider.com/pubarchive.php?Herself
If, for any reason, you wish to unsubscribe, instructions are at the end - but we do hope you'll stay with us.
Greetings and blessings to all,

Well, this is a first - we're sending out this week's edition very late on a Sunday night and most of you won't receive it until Monday morning. While we like to think that everyone is sitting on the edge of their seat waiting for the latest issue to show up, we're getting better at biting the reality bullet - this isn't book 5 in the Harry Potter Series. Ah well, we'll explain later.

It really is lovely to be back and we do enjoy writing to you all each week - so, thank you for allowing us into your lives to blither and blather, hither and yonder. We'd also like to extend the warmest of welcomes to our newest subscribers - our thanks to you, too, for signing up - and please do feel free to forward our meanderings to family and friends.

We hope this issue finds you and yours on the pig's back. As for us, well, there's an old saying - if you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans. The week started out well enough - Monday was beautiful, so Herself decided to do much-needed weeding out in the garden. By Tuesday, there were fewer weeds, but the gardener was in far worse shape than the flower beds had been. We won't bore you with all the details - the long and the short of it was a visit to the hospital on Thursday. The prognosis is fine, the patient is better, and the pharmaceutical companies made a killing.

So, after that little set-back, during which almost nothing was accomplished on the website, the convalescing patient began work on this week's newsletter. That was Saturday evening. Then, oh joy, her computer crashed. So much for getting the newsletter out on time. We decide it's a sign -and give it up until tomorrow.

All well and good - except that today, Sunday, Bridget is supposed to be at the 20th Annual Cincinnati Feis as a judge in the Soda Bread competition. She does succeed in doing her duty (for which there should be a medal!) Himself is no help. If it really is Soda Bread, he doesn't like it. However, after twenty or so samples of entries that range from gummy, uncooked pancakes to one that still lingers pleasurably on the palate, we were outta there. If you've been to one of these regional dance competitions lately, you might understand our haste to depart. It's with fondness we remember - and not so long ago - when mothers did what they could to give their girls a head of curls. Now? Wigs! Today's dancer has become a caricature of what she once was and it's our hope that eventually, this particular practise will be banned in competition. Take another pill, Bridget. Ah, yes, much better now.

Remember in last week's newsletter we talked about the much tighter security measures when traveling to and from the US? Dallas, a Canadian friend and subscriber in Texas sent us the following addendum in reference to being blocked from re-entry: "... for anyone who doesn't have the permanent status for the US, only temp status... I have the latter and from what I've learned from going through this process, you aren't allowed to leave the US if you just have the temporary status (no final interview yet to obtain the permanent card). If you do leave, they assume that means you're giving up your application for permanent status and they can then keep you from entering the US for up to 10 years. Pretty wild, eh. But that was in effect before the 9/11 tragedy. I haven't been able to return to Canada to visit because of this rule."

Besides that important item from Dallas, we also received some other interesting email: Clare Byre writes - It was a wonderful weekend in Tilting. This weekend was a very special time as Tilting was the first place in Newfoundland to receive the designation of a Provincial Heritage District." She went on to describe what must have been a memorable weekend with the only glitch occurring when a speaker fell or knocked against a statue of St. Patrick and took his head off. We know this is often happens with statues of the Infant of Prague - but, St. Patrick? Is there a message here?

As usual, readers took the time to send us unique links. This one is from Maevey:
The site lists songs, the artists who do them, their albums and all the songs on that
album and the lyrics to the songs on those albums as well.

Fed up with telemarketers? Who isn't. If you're in the USA, you can now put a stop to those annoying calls - Hartson sent us this URL:

And, in our own surfing, we found:
The Irish Film Guide for everything you might ever want to know about Irish-related movies, including an a to z listing of films set in Ireland:

In news from Ireland, unmetered access to the internet has finally become a reality as UTV Internet became the first telecoms firm to launch a flat internet service. We're also hearing more and more about the scarcity of blackthorn walking sticks; a tourist from Texas went all over the map to find one and couldn't. So, if you've a mind to buy one for yourself, or as a gift, better get on the stick! (groan)

With that - and being late enough as it is, on with the update:
Help support our efforts by visiting our newest sponsor: Celtic Shamrock!

What's "Nua"? Come take a look at our latest offerings, including Pewter hair ties and Celtic toe rings! Also check out our lovely array of Irish apparel, as well as a wide range of items featuring family crests. Fly the flag with pride, but make it extra special with your family's Coat of Arms in the center! From Irish art to Irish weddings, we're confident you'll find what you're looking for at Celtic Shamrock. Plus, we're offering a 15% discount on orders of $50.00 or more. Just insert the Code #29206 in the box on the check out form. We hope you enjoy your visit and will come back often.
Please click: http://www.celticshamrock.com/index.cfm?aff=34037
A Bit of The Wit
Joke of The Week
Did You Know?
Quotes & Quips
Know Your Irish Writers & Books?
New This Week
The Week Ahead
Ireland remains a deeply religious country, with the two main denominations being "us" and "them". In the unlikely event you are asked which group you belong to, the correct answer is:"I'm an atheist, thank God". The Irish Echo, Australia
An oldie, but goodie:
Mrs. Pete Monaghan came into the newsroom to pay for her husband's obituary. She was told by the kindly newsman that it was dollar a word and he remembered Pete and wasn't it too bad about him passing away. She thanked him for his kind words and bemoaned the fact that she only had two dollars. But she wrote out the obituary, "Pete died." The newsman said he thought old Pete deserved more and he'd give her three more words at no charge. Mrs. Pete Monaghan thanked him and rewrote the obituary: "Pete died. Boat for sale" __________________________________________________________
1. Swallowing a live frog was an old Irish cure for a stomach ache?
2. St. James's Gate Brewery is built on the site where, since medieval times, Dubliners held an annual drinking festival every 25th July to celebrate the feastday of St. James?
3. Emmett Square in Birr, Co. Offaly, marks the centre of Ireland?
Appropriately, after Bridget's experiences of the past week, we found the following in a list of actual notes from medical records, as dictated by physicians:
1.While in the ER, she was examined, X-rated and sent home.
2. By the time he was admitted, his rapid heart had stopped, and he was feeling better.
3. Discharge status: Alive but without permission.
The answers to last week's quiz:

1.  The Rain at the End of Summer  by John B. Keane
2.  West of Ireland Summers  by Tamasin Day-Lewis
3.  No Shoes in Summer by Mary Ryan (Editor), Sean Browne (Editor), Kevin Gilmour (Editor)

A round of applause (or pints) to:

Helen Dowd
Check out the poetry and story categories of my website for new and refreshing articles at: http://occupytillicome.online-ministries.com/ Helen Dowd.

Hartson Dowd
Ireland's Illustrated History Magazine - includes Book reviews, Events, Sources,
Museums, Genealogy & Organisations

Ellen Parodi
Namely Gifts at http://namelygifts.com
Personalized Name Keepsakes and Gifts
Something for every name on your gift list!
Featuring Weddings, Graduations and Our Everyday Heroes

Dallas Franklin
Sell Writing Online - Come feast your eyes upon a writing smorgasbord and sub*scribe to Dallas's Fr*ee SWO Newsletter. Sharing Writing markets, Articles to help you, and a cornucopia of goodies. Promote your Website/Book for Fr*ee in each issue. Come taste a sample and sub*scribe at:

Diedre McKiernan-Hetzler
According to Terry Flynn Tours of Ireland, who has the longest continuously running tour from the States to Ireland? The McKiernans of Irish Books &
NOTE: Delighted to hear the wedding went well, Diedre!

Want to see your name and favorite site in our list of literary sleuths? Try to find the following authors - we assure you, it's really easy! Who wrote:

1. A New Lease on Life - landlords, tenants and immigrants in Ireland & Canada
2. The Irish in Ontario - A Study in Rural History
3. The Irish in North America: A Regional Biography
Hint: All three titles can be found here:
Send us the correct answers to two out of three and the rewards are:
1. If you have a web site, send us your URL plus a short description and we'll publish it in the next newsletter. If you don't have a web site, please nominate a favorite. Also, please remember that we list our sleuths in the order of entries received.
2. Receive a correct entry into the current "So You Think You're Irish" trivia contest. (In fairness to those of you who go to the trouble of actually finding the answers to the trivia contest, you'll get a bonus entry!)
1. Home Page - See what's new at a glance:
2. A Dandy of an Irish Yankee:
3. The Raccoon Caper -Ms. Half & Company: We're going to keep this up for a bit longer, just in case you might be interested in reading it. It's published at a special URL accessible only to you and by clicking through here:
4. Basic Irish - Part 2 of our lesson on words and phrases related to golf (all the ones we forgot the first time!):
5. The Irish Kitchen: Irish B & B Potato Buns
6. Circle of Prayer: Novena #8 in this cycle began on June 28 and will continue through July 6. With the news coming out of Iraq, it's painfully obvious that the war isn't over. So, especially during this Independence Day week, our petitions will include the safety of all men and women in the military. If you would like to join us in prayer or meditation, please click:
7. Irish News: Headlines for the past week
8. This month in Irish History:
9. Shop Irish: We've added some more items to the men's shop, (and other areas as well). So, remember to check back often. Can't find what you want? Send us an email and we'll do out best to find what you're looking for.
10. Trivia Contest - Monday's the last day! All entries must be received by midnight wherever you are in the world. Winner will be announced in next week's newsletter.
11. Advertise with Us: This page has been given a much-needed overhaul. If you know of anyone who might benefit from advertising on the website or in the newsletter, please share the following URL with them:

Pinch, punch, first day of the month - white rabbit! When Bridget was growing up, this was said on the first of every month. We don't know what it means, but we'll definitely need to pull a rabbit out of the hat, white or otherwise, to stay up with what's on the plate - new quiz, new Culture Corner, new kid' story - and so on. And, whatever happened to new articles? Indeed, Bridget says, wearily nodding her head. No matter what else does or doesn't happen, we posted a new blessing today, Wednesday, we'll have another quote, and we'll update the headlines and history daily.

Just a few more things before we take our leave; last week's riddle was:
Curtail me thrice, I am a youth; behead me once, a snake.
Complete, I'm often used, in truth, when certain steps you'd take.
What Am I? A Ladder. Well done to all who got it right!
This week's poser: What gets wetter as it dries?

Getting married in July? The old verse for the month is:
"They, who in July, do wed, must labor always for their bread."
Possibly, these rather somber words came from "Hungry July" - that period in the old days when rural folk fretted over having enough stores to sustain them until the new harvest was ripe.

On a lighter note: Happy Canada Day to all of our friends up north! CBC and Radio-Canada will celebrate Canada's 136th birthday with two television specials featuring stars from across the country, live from Parliament Hill. Check it out here: http://www.cbc.ca/canadaday/

And for all of our friends in the USA - Happy Fourth of July!

Until next time, may the Good Shepherd of us all enfold you and yours in the gentle mantle of His love and protection. But, give Him a helping hand as well and - as they say in Ireland - mind yourself!

All the best,
Bridget & Russ
Get down on your knees and thank God you're still on your feet
Help us keep this newsletter free by visiting A Piece of Ireland.
Located at Lissacreasig, Macroom, Co. Cork, Ireland Macroom Land Trust is offering1-foot square plots of land for sale. Each purchase comes with a certificate suitable for framing, photographs from the area, and a 4- page history. Perfect for weddings, anniversaries, and birthdays, A Piece of Ireland is also ideal for promotional or corporate gifts. To learn more - and get 5% off your purchase - please click here: http://www.apieceofireland.com/index.php?id=1083
Did you enjoy reading this edition of our newsletter? If so, please show your appreciation by sending a voluntary donation to Himself/Herself, 5670 Meryton Place, Cincinnati, OH 45224. Any amount is welcome - and many thanks for your kindness!
Know someone who could use a bit of cheering up? Say it with flowers!
Events & Classifieds
Note: To avoid duplication, we list only those events not mentioned in the comprehensive listing put together by The Wild Geese. To check their Events Page, please click: http://www.thewildgeese.com/pages/events.html
The Irish Heritage Newsletter also lists events - if you'd like to subscribe, just send a note to George at Steeler059@aol.com

The Voyage of the Jeanie Johnston
She is in Bristol, Pennsylvania until June 30. From there she heads for NYC. She will be docked at the North Cove Marina, Battery Park City from Thursday, July 3 to Sunday, July 13. For details, please click

Pittsburgh July 7-July 25
Celtic Camp Returns
The camp is a Celtic cultural immersion experience for kids 5 to 12. The campers receive instruction in: Irish Gaelic, Tin Whistle, Ceili and Step dancing, as well as workshops on the heritage and history of the 6 modern Celtic countries, making a variety of Celtic arts & crafts, listening to the stories, legends and music from the various countries, learning about Gaelic sports, cooking ethnic dishes, participating in Highland Games, learning about the bagpipes, visits from the likes of St. Patrick...all ending with a ceili on July 25th. The camp runs for 3 weeks, beginning July 7th and ending July 25th. Campers may attend all three weeks or one or two as suits your schedule. Camp activities are from 9-4, but we are open 8-6 to accommodate work schedules. The cost is $160 per week with a limited number of scholarships available. The location is the River Valley School in Regent Square, 1 block off the Parkway East. We are also offering a variety of other camps throughout the summer, you might consider joining us for King Arthur's Court, Colonial America, or Mythical Beasts. For information contact Peggy Dague at peigicsa@yahoo.com or by phone at 412-247-9133.

Dun Laoghaire, Dublin, Ireland
Festival of World Cultures - August 22-August 24
Arts festival celebrating cultural diversity through an extravaganza of internationally acclaimed acts including music, film, circus, theatre, dance performances, club nights, markets, exhibitions, workshops & children's activities.

Cultural Holidays on Inis Mór
Walking the Ancient Celtic Way - August 2-9 2003
For more information, please click: http://www.irish-culture.ch

6th Int'l McManus Clan Association Gathering May 25th through May 31st, 2004
For full details please visit our website at:
http://members.aol.com/manusclan/mcm2004.htm or contact Phil McManus at Manus@aol.com

7th Clann McKenna Rally - June 25th through Sunday June 27th 2004
For details, please write plunkettmckenna@eircom.net
or click on the following link:
Send an email to: bhaggerty@irishcultureandcustoms.com
OR click on this link: