Monday, March 1, 2010

Irish On My Mind

My Mom was Irish and German, and she married my Dad who was German, but she favored her Irish roots and she passed that favoritism on to me! I love all things Irish! And especially at this time of year with St. Patrick's Day so near, it brings to mind my Irish roots, it brings to mind my Irish mother and it brings a great longing for her. My Mom was gone four years this past February, and don't listen to what people say, it doesn't really get easier, it's just that the abnormal becomes your normal. And you have days when memories tear your heart apart, and days when those same memories bring you much peace and joy. These few months are hard for me, my Mom went Home to God on February 12, and her birthday is March 25. For some reason this year her Anniversary was especially hard for me, and maybe that's because I thought it should be getting easier, I thought I should be feeling better, but I'm not, there's a void in my life that will never be filled. I have two friends that just lost their own Moms these past few months, and it's a shared sisterhood I don't wish on anyone. I think the hardest thing of all is facing the fact that you have nowhere to direct the love you have for you mother, it's bottled up inside you with no where to go, it makes your heart feel like it's going to burst. And I think that must be the hardest thing for anyone to deal with when you lose a close loved one. What do you do with all those feelings and all that love? There's no amount of grief counseling, or therapy, or volunteering, or 'keeping busy' that is going to help. Because the special love you have for each individual in your life can not be given to someone else. The love I have for my mother is very different than the love I have for my husband, you can't love your mother and your husband in the same way, nor my children and grandchildren, and it's a very different love from the love I have for extended family and friends, and vastly different from the love of neighbors and my fellow man. And for me, that is the pain of death, that is the pain of losing a loved one, more painful than the void that is left behind is the fact that there is no where to put that love.
Well, I did not set out to share that when first I sat to write this post, but my heart has a mind of it's own. What I meant to do was share with you some of the Irish things I am lucky enough to have in my home and some of the Irish things I love:

(The song Danny Boy was a favorite of my Mom's and I especially like the version I have playing here of Eric Clapton on the guitar.)

My little Irish nesting doll (she's actually made in Russia but she is labeled as 'Irish Lass').





My hand carved wooden Celtic Cross design (it's made from olive wood carved by an Irish artisan, and we picked this up at an outdoor Irish Fair in Connecticut).




A little harp that I picked up at a church sale for twenty-five cents!




A Belleek vase that was my Mom's.


A little Belleek Angel that belonged to my Mom (it's actually a bell), and a thimble made in Ireland that my sister-in-law picked up for me when she visited there, and a ceramic Irish angel pin that a friend gave to me one St. Patrick's Day, and two little pipes that were made in Ireland that my husband picked up at a church sale.



A tiny music box that I gave to my Mom when she was in the midst of Alzheimer's Disease. She still loved that song, and at the time she still remembered every word.




And here are a few things I'd be shopping for right now if my husband and I weren't following 'Dave Ramsey's Baby Steps To Financial Freedom' (his philosophy is "if you don't need it, you don't buy it"! He really takes the fun out of shopping!):
I love Fiesta dishes, and I especially love them in the color called Shamrock! Yes, I would really like to be serving corned beef and cabbage on these dishes!


And I know for sure that at $80.00 per plate (yes, I said per plate, not per place setting), I know for sure that these lovely Belleek dishes would not pass Dave Ramsey's approval:



And when we do finally achieve financial freedom, I hope to be able to one day visit Ireland and stay in one of the beautiful self-catering cottages they have over there:


And this year I will be celebrating St. Patrick's Day at Radio City Music Hall enjoying the Farewell Performance of Riverdance with my friend Barbara! (The tickets luckily were bought before we started Dave Ramsey's baby steps!)




And, finally, here is my favorite little Irish lad (well, he's part Irish anyway!):




And I want to take this opportunity to properly thank Morning T for my sunshine award! I did post about it before but I didn't express the gratitude I feel, I am so grateful to Morning T and I do so enjoy visiting her blog as she shares her life, her family, her shopping finds, her decorating ideas, and her wonderful tutorials! Thank you, T!

And I'm wishing you all a wonderful March!

39 comments:

  1. Love all things Irish Eileen....you will love Ireland.....the people are so friendly, warm and funny. Their land is so beautiful and so green, shades you can't imagine.....a wonderful trip for you and Ray to have.
    I love your little Irish lad......so cute and all your Irish favorites, the memories of your mother are precious Eileen, keep them close to your heart where your mother will always be. There is no time limit on missing someone we love when they pass away.....I find it is something I have learned to accept but never get use too. All the love I have for my mother is still here but the time I spent with her is now shared with others I love......Hugs to Jayden and Mia......:-) Hugs

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  2. My father's family is Irish; therefore, St. Patty's Day has always been a bit special!

    And who can pass up the beautiful IRISH BLESSING? I love it so.

    My sister lives in Savannah, Georgia and they have a huge Mar. 17 celebration...turning the river green and all! What fun!

    Both of my mother's parents are now in HIS hands, but we constantly celebrate them by storytelling. My girls (and I) LOVE to hear stories about my grandparents!

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  3. Hi! I wanted to stop in and wish you a Happy March, as well! I want to personally invite you to stop in to Screaming Meme...It is a decorating blog...Hope to see you there! Meme

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  4. You're SO right about the "different kinds of love"....

    I'm really interested in hearing that the two of you are doing the Dave Ramsey thing. Gary and I often listen to him on the radio and have read a couple of his books. His advice is SO practical and wise. I love hearing people shout "We're debt free!"

    Basically, that is the way we try to live and have encouraged our children to do the same!

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  5. Oh your lucky you are going to see River Dance! I would like to see that!! I am sorry you are missing your Mom - I don't think it gets any easier. My MIL will be gone 1 year on March 15. When I saw today was March 1st - - - I was like oh, no......the 15th is going to be here soon!

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  6. Hi, Eileen!

    I'm checking in with you today and just loved seeing all the Irish things in your post and on your blog. Am doing a table to celebrate St. Paddy's with two of my "Irish" BFFs using Irish china (I have leprechaun mugs and plates), and it is so cute and festive. I love the green and the wearing of it. It used to distress me that I knew we had some Irish ancestry but didn't know any Irish surnames in our line. Well, after poking around a bit, I found I have ancient Irish ancestry on one side that goes through an English line on my dad's side. It's a proven line through what is called a "gateway" ancestor, and I spent all one day perusing it. So I can now legitimately say I can celebrate St. Patrick's Day with the Irish. ;-) Mr. Magpie has Irish ancestry on his mother's side, a wee smidgen, but a smidgen none the less.

    Thinking of you and sending you big hugs as you go through these tough days. I had two close friends die at this time of year, and it forever changed spring for me... but it's also the birthday of some of my closest friends whom I love dearly.

    I love that beautiful guitar version of "Danny Boy." I also love the version by Eva Cassidy.

    I'm so glad you are getting to see River Dance. It must be so thrilling! Enjoy it for me as well...

    XO,

    Sheila (who is still MIA, but I hope to be back to blogging soon!) :-)

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  7. Hi Eileen, this is such a nice post. You have a lovely way with words. I also think you are such a sensitive and caring person.

    Hugs, Barb ♥

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  8. I am so happy to see you returning to blogging! I have missed you! I'm sorry you are missing your mother so much. My mother died when she was 75 and has been gone a long time, there are times when I still think I'll pick up the phone and call her about a recipe, or something!

    Your Irish things are very unique! Cuisine Kathleen is having a St. Patrick's Day celebration, you should join in with your neat things. I posted mine a few weeks ago on Marty's Cloche party.

    Those green dishes are very pretty! My daughter's have gone by Dave Ramsey's book for years.

    Katherine

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  9. Darling, your Irish lad is adorable. Sweetie, I popped in to personally thank you for the sweet birthday wishes you left for Christopher. We are both ever so grateful for you kindness.

    Love & Hugs
    Duchess

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  11. So glad to see you are blogging again. I am sorry you are missing your Mom so much but glad that you are sharing your feelings with us. It is nice you can celebrate your Irish roots and memories of your mother. Stella

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  12. Hello~
    I love your story and all your treasures ! You have a great collection !
    Kammy

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  13. Hi Eileen,

    Your post has touched me deeply, and I know exactly how you are feeling. My mom went to Heaven in 1984, and a day doesn't go by that I don't miss her. Of all the people in the world, she was the one that I knew would love me unconditionally, no matter what, and always give me the best advice, even if I didn't want it. No one does that, not even hubby...I miss her so. And she always talked about her daddy, whom I never got to meet. He was full blood Irish, last name of O'Higgins...can't get more Irish than that! He spoiled her rotten, and she was so proud of him. I would dearly love to visit Ireland...I particularly like that photo of the self-catering b&b...what a wonderful experience that would be! I enjoyed seeing all of your Irish collection...they are precious and have much meaning. I have a friend with a Beleek collection, and she isn't even Irish, but it is so beautiful. I like Dave Ramsey...follow his advice and when the time is right, there will be some pieces available for you to purchase, and with some Irish luck, you might find some at bargain prices that even Dave would approve of.

    Love your sweet blog background...I should do that too...maybe tomorrow.

    Hugs to you, sweet Eileen,

    Mary

    ReplyDelete
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  15. Hi Eileen, I love that little nesting doll. How cute is that! Happy March to you too.

    ReplyDelete
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  17. Eileen, I am checking in with you before I am computerless again, and I wanted to wish you a very Happy St. Patrick's Day! I wish you could be in St. Augustine with us next weekend for Claudie's birthday. Sending you warm hugs of the green variety. ;-)

    Erin Go Braugh...

    XO,

    Sheila

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  18. What a lovely blog - this is my first visit. My Dad is Irish, so I am lucky enough to visit Northern Ireland regularly to see my family - it is a lovely place, with a lot of warm people, but England is lovely too, so I do hope you shall be able to visit and enjoy our hospitality too :) Happy St Patrick's Day! Lucie x

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  20. Bonjour Eileen,

    Its my first visit. I was sent by a friend. I too have lost my mother 20 years ago and now my father a year ago. Its difficult to fill this void. There is not one day that passes by that I do not miss them. I try and live life accordingly to their values. I try and instill these same values in my own children. This is how I honor them. I think gried is a process that goes this way: one foot forward and sometimes 2 feet back. There are good days but some are difficult. Love your blog. Happy St. Patrick's Day. : )

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  24. Only this morning I heard "Danny Boy" being played on the radio, it was sung by Tommy Flemming and I thought of you. I enjoyed seeing your lovely Irish (Russian) nesting dolls, I used to collect dolls for many years, but no longer do so. You have a nice collection of Irish Belleek, I presume you will pass it on to that very handsome boy, just like your Momdid to you.

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  25. Hi

    Just checking in to see how things are going. Miss your visits. Hope all is well in your world. Blessings Stella

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  27. Dear Miss Eileen,

    I'm catchin' up with you all over the world wide web! Your last post here had me pondering... and the way you speak of your relationship with and the love for your mom got me to thinking. You ask what are you supposed to do with all that love that would only belong to your mom from your heart? I say, write letters, or journal to your mom. Keep the love living... and not feeling like it has no home. Write about your day and your feelings and how Mom would have helped you, encouraged you, were she still here and healthy of mind. I did this when my mom passed away. I was very bitter and empty and felt like I had lost my very best friend in the whole wide world... just when I was starting to become my own woman with a family of my own. It took a long time for me to not define my mother's life by her death... but to define my mother's life by how she lived all those years before she became ill. And above all... I have no doubt in my heart and soul that I will see her again when we all get to heaven... and our pain here on earth spent missing them will seem like only a moment compared to sharing an eternity with those we love. Hope this encourages you... as you have encouraged so many others... including me.

    Hugs, Penny Sue

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