In this wonderful book, Alice Taylor recalls Christmas in her home of Innishannon over the years. Even though the family had very little, Alice's mother made Christmas very special for everyone. Beginning with her childhood Christmas, Alice's book travels to the Christmas of today and celebrates old traditions like collecting holly, decorating the crib and baking a Christmas cake. Alice says that for she and her family, Christmas was a warm glow that radiated throughout the cold winter of her school days. She compares it to a beacon of a lighthouse saying that "Christmas shone across those bleak winter days, drawing us invitingly towards its warm heart".
Imagine that this is Alice's 24th book and was some two years in the writing!
November was the perfect time, and way, to bring Irish traditions in to the homes of MyIrelandBox subscribers to warm them up for Christmas!
Dúinn Designs - County Louth
We looked all over Ireland for the perfect apron for subscribers in November. We love adding Irish history, myths and legends to our MyIrelandBoxes and this was a nice way to do so.
Dúinn means - 'For Us' in Gaelic and all of Bernadette's designs are created by a fusion of the iconic landscape of Ireland with local Irish folklore, myths and legends to create really wonderful, contemporary designs that tell the story of Irish heritage ‐ but with an exciting modern twist using creative patterns and subtle colours reminiscent of Ireland's lands, seas and skies.
Bernadette's designs give new life to the story of Queen Meabh’s Brown Bull, the Orchards of Ireland, the Skellig Islands, Giant's Causeway, Newgrange, Trinity College Dublin, Irish Oak trees and Kilmainham Gaol.
Bernadette takes these well known iconic symbols of Ireland and turns them on their head to re-invigorate them and create patterns for today. Celtic patterns have been the foundation for Irish design for many years and are still widely used. Based on this knowledge, Dúinn Designs explores new avenues for modern Irish and relevant patterns that can be used both in fashion and household textiles.
'Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireann na daoine' print card - Dingle Wild Card - Dingle, Co. Kerry
Neasa Murphy started her career with a Masters degree in Business, but left her job in Financial Services in Dublin after a number of years, to train to become a potter! After many very happy years throwing pots, she settled into family life and three children later, she reignited that creative flame with her new greeting cards. She was prompted to set up this new business when she was looking for a card to send to a friend who was unwell. This friend is an Irish (Gaelic) speaker, like Neasa herself and she really wanted to buy a card for her in Gaelic, to let her know that she was in her thoughts. Alas, she could not find any cards that were to her fabulous taste, so Neasa decided to make one and the first ever Dingle Wild Card was born! It read ‘Ag Smaoineamh Ort’ which translates as ‘Thinking of You’, and was everything she was looking for - thoughtful and beautifully handcrafted, with a bit of sparkle!
We have been avid readers of Irish authored books recently and in one lovely book 'Lost and Found' by Dr. Jules Montague, we were reminded of the wonderful Gaelic saying 'Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireann na daoine ' - an Irish saying that translates literally as “People live in each other’s shadows.” It means that we are shielded from the sun by each other, that we rely on each other for shelter. People need each other. It is a beautiful Gaelic saying that we seem to see everywhere since we recalled recently in that book and we are reminded of how important a message it is in our communities. A recent newspaper article quotes our president Michael D Higgins saying it, our local Secondary Community School has it over their entrance door and it seems to be the window to answers to many conundrums that we have in our daily lives.
People do need each other and the next time you dine with others, whether it is at Thanksgiving or otherwise, we asked MyIrelandBox subscribers to place this card (framed or unframed) in the middle of the table to remind them of the importance of reaching out and spending time with others.