Monday, June 4, 2012

Irish This 'N That

I just love the Irish.  They are the best storytellers, the best joke tellers.  They love to laugh and dance and raise their glasses of Guinness (or in the Pearl family's case, their cold cans of Miller Lite) at parties--to celebrate life to the fullest, surrounded by relatives and friends.

At least the Irish people I know are like that.  My husband's family is composed of lads and lasses of 100% pure Irish blood, I believe.  Both sides of his family tree are populated with Roaches, Buckleys, McCoys, Sweeneys, Mullanes, Foleys, and the like.  I, on the other hand, am a mutt.  My mother's maiden name is Kelly, but I think I'm technically only 1/8-1/4 Irish (and in fact I'm about 1/2 English, which means that my British ancestors were the oppressors of my husband's Irish ones--how sad!).*  The one thing not blatantly Irish about my husband's clan is the name Pearl, which doesn't really sound very Irish at all.  I sometimes wonder if it was misinterpreted and given a new spelling somewhere along the way, when an immigrant to this country had a brogue too thick to understand.

Anyway, fully Irish or not, I am fascinated by and drawn to Irish culture.  I would love the opportunity to travel to Dublin one day with my husband, who occasionally flies there--and by that, I mean pilots planes filled with Dublin-bound passengers.  Our beloved Notre Dame Fighting Irish are actually playing a football game there in the fall, and barring any unforeseen circumstances we are planning to go over and watch the game--and do a little sightseeing on the Emerald Isle as well.

In the meantime, I have turned our two oldest sons' former bedroom into a guestroom with a decidedly Irish decorative theme going on.
For the record, this bedroom looked NOTHING like this when two messy boys were inhabiting it.
And yesterday, I made a fiscally irresponsible choice at the grocery store, simply because I am fascinated by all things Irish.  We were almost out of butter (a crisis situation around here), so after Mass my husband and I stopped to get some.  We picked up two pounds of store brand salted butter, and then this intriguing package which I'd never seen in the dairy aisle before caught my eye: "Kerrygold Naturally Softer Pure Irish Butter."  Imported from Ireland!  It was $3.29 for a half-pound, whereas our normal butter costs a mere $2.49 a pound.  At that price, we thought, it sure better taste like gold!  (My husband quipped, "I hope 'Irish butter' isn't just another name for margarine.")
Well, we had our Irish butter on our Portuguese bread last night, along with a pot roast dinner.  And I must say, the Irish make a good butter, just like they make a good beer.  But I think from now on, we'll stick to the much cheaper store brand...except, perhaps, on special occasions, like St. Patty's Day!

*If I got my percentages wrong here, I'm sure to hear about it from my Dad (our self-appointed family genealogist).


  1. Looks great! Like an Irish-themed bed and breakfast.

  2. I know--I really love it. You and Sean can stay there when you come to the house--there's plenty of room for the babies, too. :)

  3. Oh, and I did get confirmation from my dad (who is himself 3/4 English) that my siblings and I are indeed 1/2 English and only 1/8 Irish, with some German and Dutch thrown into the mix. My sons have a lot more Irish blood than their mom!

  4. I love Irish butter! It is expensive, but I only use it for toast on a weekend morning. It lasts a long time that way, and reminds me of my great week over there last year. It has a sweet taste to it, and when you are in Ireland you see that use it for everything, they are very proud of it! They even will put it on their deli sandwiches instead of mayo. Enjoy the treat!