Sunday, August 16, 2015

Rings 'n Things

Recently, my husband and I were visiting with our oldest son and his family out in the Midwest.  We have been so incredibly blessed that in spite of the distance that has always separated us from him and his wife since their marriage in 2009 (and also since the birth of our first grandchildren, their twin daughters born in 2011), we have been able to see them quite often.

With all of our boys grown, four of them married, and the grandchildren coming fast and furious (praise God!), never have we appreciated the perks that come with my husband's job more than we do now.  I never thought I'd become a jet-setter; but life has a way of surprising you sometimes.

When my boys were little, the idea of airplane travel was the stuff of my worst nightmares.  I avoided it whenever possible, and never did it if it meant leaving my children behind.  Now, I fly all. the. time. 

Because if I didn't, I wouldn't see my  kids--and now my grandkids--nearly as often as I do.

Anyway, one day during this most recent visit, 4-year-old Cutie Pie (one of the twins) was sitting on my lap, fiddling with my Claddagh ring.  I pointed out all the elements on it--the crown, the heart, and the two hands holding the heart--and told her what these images symbolize.  She sighed, and breathed, in the most awe-filled little voice, "It's beautiful."

"Tell me more about this Cladddagh ring, Grammy."
I've had my gold Claddagh ring since 1979 (faith 'n begorrah, that was a long time ago!!  I'm old!), when my then boyfriend/now husband brought it home for me from a trip to Ireland that he'd taken with the Notre Dame rugby team.  We'd been dating for 6 years by that point, and it was the first serious piece of jewelry he ever gave to me.  I was about as awe-struck when I looked at it as Cutie Pie was a week or so ago.  (I might have said, "It's the most beautiful sight these eyes have ever seen," or something like that.  Or maybe that was Rudy's father when he first saw the Notre Dame stadium in the movie "Rudy"...but I digress.)

My Claddagh ring, still intact after all these years (although I've had to
 have it repaired a couple of times); and its original box.
Needless to say, after seeing how enthralled Cutie Pie was with my ring (which she'd never really noticed before, because she's typically so busy looking at/holding/turning over the gold Miraculous Medal that I always wear on a chain around my neck), Papa and I are already plotting a trip to Dublin to purchase Claddagh rings for all of our granddaughters!  (I know you can get them here in the US of A; but I think I need an excuse to finally see this legendary Emerald Island that has long captured my heart and imagination...)

Speaking of Claddagh rings, I actually wrote a book about one.  (How's that for a segue?!)  It's called Erin's Ring.

The past month, I was running a giveaway over at Goodreads, which ended last night.  Two people have been chosen to win free signed copies of Erin's Ring, an historical novel about an Irish Claddagh ring (and other stuff, too).  If you entered and didn't win, I'm sure I'll be running another giveaway sometime in the future.

Now no more navel gazing (or Claddagh ring gazing).  I'm off to cook up some bacon.  Sundays mean big egg and bacon brunches with my main man, something we always look forward to when we get back from morning Mass.

Here's a wish that your Sunday will be golden, too, wherever you may be. 


  1. A friend of mine brought me a Claddaugh ring back from studying abroad in Galloway a few years ago (that's where my birthparents are from) and I wear it every day. It is possibly one of the most beautiful things and definitely one of my most treasured possessions. <3

    The Starving Inspired
    The Starving Inspired

  2. What a great story! I am definitely not surprised--you look like such an Irish lass.

    This ring is one of my most treasured possessions as well. And I want all of my granddaughters to have one like it.

  3. I bought myself a Claddagh ring in Galway. I being a fiesty 18 year old didn't pick a traditional one but a stamped one and I wore it daily until I got married. Still my favorite souvenir. :)

  4. Love this .... and what a great thing to go to Ireland to get the rings for your granddaughters!!! Make sure you take a trip to a castle!!