Friday, March 16, 2012


 Since my children were small, I've made a great fuss over St. Patrick's Day. It was not something we did growing up in Ireland, but as a treat to amuse my wee ones years ago, I began to colour their milk and potatoes green for this special day.

The notion exploded, and was I to know they would never get over it? Now a table of full-grown adults, and whomever else we can con into it graciously invite, gather at table each year to partake of green wine and a motley assortment of viridian-tinged victuals.

 It is great sport to check out the reactions. We've had guests who were quite unable to eat at the sight of dark, mushy peas crowding up against lividly-tinted spuds...and skinless chicken that glows fluorescent green on the outside and is fish-belly white when cut seems to repel everyone.

 It must be said, however,
 that others have fit
 right in, stuffing
 food into their mouths 
in the knowledge that 
it all tastes just 
the same 
These people we embrace  
into the family!
This year, scheduling conflicts force us to postpone celebrations
 until next week...cancelling was not an option, apparently!
 I leave you
 with a few photos of previous dinners, and a collage of my girl
 Meeghan in her
 St. Paddy's Day pullover.

But should you hear the raucous sound of the Pogues somewhere in tomorrow's celebrations, you'll know I'm having a grand oul' time singing along with them!
Have yourself a wonderful day!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

I'll Show You Mine If You Show Me Yours!

On this morning of World Book Day, I made a list of the books I’ve read recently. It amused me that the mix I came up was so eclectic – everything from children’s books to novels to true-life accounts of heart-breaking reality. This has piqued my curiosity… does everyone bounce from genre to genre as I do, and indeed, how many people are as passionate about reading as I am?

Books are the world to me. They took me through a troubled childhood by being my friends when I had no other and my refuge when the world asked more of me than a child should have to give. As an adult, they have been my joy and my inspiration…a continual celebration and exploration of life in all its diversity. In the thrall of bookish delights, an idea began to form in my head.
While I have never hosted an event or a challenge, I realized I would love to know what my blogging friends are reading, and what part books play in their lives. If I shared my favourite reads might others be enticed to do the same?
To that end, I offer, “I’ll Show You Mine If You Show Me Yours.” I’m talking about book lists, of course! The following is a random list is of what I’ve read over the last six or eight months. These are the first fifty titles that came to my head, though I’ve gone through many more, clearly the reason I’m accused of always having my nose stuck in a book!

1:  The Faith of A Writer by Joyce Carol Oates (2003)
2:  The Writing Life by Annie Dillard (1989)
3:  Mystery Of The White Lion by Linda Tucker (2001)
4: An Unconsidered People:The Irish in London by Catherine Dunne (2003)
5:  Allah, Liberty & Love by Irshad Manji (2011)
6:  Sky Burial (Love and loss) by Xinran (2004)
7:  Little Princes (Helping children in Tibet) by Conor Grennan (2010)
8:  Wildlife Wars (African wildlife) by Richard Leakey (2001)
9: The Stoning of Soraya M. by Freidoune Sahebjam (1994)


10: Between A Rock And A Hard Place by Aron Ralston (2004)
              (Grim but stunning)
11: Are You Somebody: The Accidental Memoir of A Dublin Woman  by Nuala O'Faolin (1996 )
12: A Long Way Gone:Memoirs of a Boy Soldier by Ishmael Beah (2007)
13: The Wilderness Family (More African wildlife) by Kobie Krüger (2001)
14: Swing Low: A Life (A father's death) by Miriam Toews (2003)
15: The Bone Woman (Forensic anthropology) by Clea Koff (2004)
16: One Hundred Days of Solitude (Buddhism) by Jane Dobisz (2008)
17: Lambsquarters: A Handmade Life by Barbara McLean (2002)
18: My Reading Life by Pat Conroy (2010)

                          Fiction:   (These are a few of my favourite authors.)

19: Tracks (Brilliantly written)  by Louise Erdrich (1988)
20: Fall of Giants  by Ken Follett (2010)
21: Port Mortuary by Patricia Cornwell (2010)
22: Her Fearful Symmetry by Audrey Niffenegger (2009)
23: Another Kind of Life by Catherine Dunne (2002)
24: The Help by Kathryn Stockett (2009)
25: Water For Elephants by Sara Gruen ( 2006)
26: Minding Frankie by Maeve Binchy (2010)
27: A Blade of Grass by Lewis DeSoto (2003)
28: Afrika by Colleen Craig (2008)
29: The Camel Bookmobile (Based on a true story) by Masha Hamilton (2007)
30: Afterlight by Alex Scarrow (2010)

 Children's Literature: (Because good writing is good writing, no matter who 
it's intended for, and  because I harbour a secret wish to be a children's author.)

31: The Boy In The Striped Pajamas
by John Boyne (2006)
32: Because of Winn Dixie (A gem of a book) by Kate DiCamillo (2000)
33: The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo (2006)
34: The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo (2006)
35: The Tiger Rising by Kate DiCamillo (2001)
36: The Magician's Elephant by kate DiCamillo (2011)
37: The City of Ember by Jeanne DuPrau (2003)
38: The City of Sparks by Jeanne DuPrau (2004)
39: The Prophet of Yonwood by Jeanne DuPrau (2006)
40: The Diamond Of Darkwood by Jeanne DuPrau (2008)

Classics: (Because my husband bought me a Kobo eReader pre-loaded 
with classics, I reread some favourites.)

41: Pride and Prejudice
by Jane Austen (1813)
42: Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë  (1847)
43: Uncle Tom's Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe (1852)
44: Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy (1877)
45: The Mayor of Casterbridge by Thomas Hardy ((1886)
46: The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde (1895)
47: The Romance of Tristan and Iseult by M. Joseph Bedier (1900)
48: Of Human Bondage by W. Somerset Maugham (1915)
49: Moby Dick by Herman Melville (1922)
50: A Tree Grows In Brooklyn by Betty Smith (1943)

I'm really hoping you will share your reading list with me, whether it contains forty titles or four. And if you have only one book that's touched you lately, let me know about that  may be just what I need at this moment in time.
If you choose to post on your own blog, do leave the link in my comments so I can visit, or simply leave a message if you'd prefer. On this World Book Day, lets celebrate in grand style!