Welcome (Céad Míle Fáilte!) to Small-leaved Shamrock

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Join us for the 2010 St. Patrick's Day online parade!

For the past two St. Patrick's Days (2008 and 2009Small-leaved Shamrock has hosted a St. Patrick's Day parade - in the blogosphere, that is. Each one was great fun and we're planning to do it again.

As you probably know, March is Irish heritage month in many places, thanks to the March 17 celebration of the life of St. Patrick, beloved patron of Ireland. Our "parade", also the 18th edition of the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture, will be open to anything and everything about Irish heritage, genealogy and culture. Articles about St. Patrick will be appreciated, but articles related to any meaningful aspect of Ireland's heritage are welcomed. Important note: No Irish heritage is required to participate!

The deadline is Sunday, March 14, 2009. Submit your parade entry here. Then come join us for the parade on St. Patrick's Day, March 17, 2009. On the feast of St. Patrick, everyone likes to be Irish, at least for one day. Hope to see you at the parade wearing your green!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Small-leaved Shamrock celebrates Family Tree Magazine's top 40

Go raibh maith agaibh!

A heartfelt thanks (in Irish Gaelic) to all of you for a great honor.  Small-leaved Shamrock, humble birthplace of the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture, is proud to reside within Family Tree Magazine's top 5 heritage blogs - a small contingent among their "Fab Forty": Family Tree Magazine's 40 Best Genealogy Blogs (which includes some of my very favorites!).

Maureen Taylor wrote the magazine's announcement and said kindly about Small-leaved Shamrock:
"A lovely photo of the Irish countryside hooks you the moment you land on this blog. The blogger—a self-described Hungarian / Croatian / Irish-ancestored woman named Lisa—offers research tips and compelling stories of Irish life. The Small-leaved Shamrock is home to the Carnival of Irish Heritage and Culture: Lisa’s links to participants’ posts."

Thank you to Diane Haddad, Maureen Taylor, and all of the Family Tree Magazine staff for the honor; Jordan McClements for the use of his beautiful photograph of the Irish countryside; my creative daughter for the Top 40 logo above; and you, my faithful readers, who placed your vote for Small-leaved Shamrock or have supported this blog in other ways.  I consider you part of my Irish clan! (Although I can't find a way to fit all of you into the pedigree chart.)

When the idea for this blog took root almost three years ago, I had the intent to connect my extended family and help them to rediscover their Irish ancestry. I had no idea where else the journey might take me.  Along the way I have discovered an even deeper appreciation of my heritage, a new collection of friends in genealogy along with some newfound cousins, and some accolades from readers and fans: including this very special recognition from one of my absolute favorite magazines
"From quiet homes and first beginning,
Out to the undiscovered ends,
There's nothing worth the wear of winning,
But laughter and the love of friends."

~ Hilaire Belloc, from "Dedicatory Ode," Verses (1910)

Thanks for visiting this little Irish corner of the web.  Don't forget to join us for the upcoming online St. Patrick's Day parade, whether you have Irish heritage or not.  The deadline to submit your entry is Sunday, March 14.

Please take the time to read Family Tree Magazine's May 2010 issue highlighting the top 40 genealogy blogs.  The list includes some of my very favorites (although many others that I enjoy didn't get a mention this time):

Genetic Genealogy
Local and Regional
News and Resources
Photos and Heirlooms
Personal and Family
Blogs mentioned by Family Tree Magazine in addition to their top 40:

The Chart Chick
Elyse’s Genealogy Blog
Everything’s Relative 
Finding the Flock 
The Genealogue
Olive Tree Genealogy Blog
Polly’s Granddaughter
Renee’s Genealogy Blog
Seeking Michigan
Think Genealogy

    Thursday, February 4, 2010

    "I speak with a proud tongue...": A poem for our Irish ancestors

    A great poem that helps to conjure up images of many of our Irish forebears...

    by Patrick MacGill (1890- )

    I speak with a proud tongue of the people who were
    And the people who are,
    The worthy of Ardara, the Rosses and Inishkeel,
    My kindred-
    The people of the hills and the dark-haired passes
    My neighbours on the lift of the brae,
    In the lap of the valley.
    To them Slainthé!

    I speak of the old men,
    The wrinkle-rutted,
    Who dodder about foot-weary -
    For their day is as the day that has been and is no more -
    Who warm their feet by the fire,
    And recall memories of the times that are gone;
    Who kneel in the lamplight and pray
    For the peace that has been theirs -
    And who beat one dry-veined hand against another
    Even in the sun-
    For the coldness of death is on them.

    I speak of the old women
    Who danced to yesterday's fiddle
    And dance no longer.
    They sit in a quiet place and dream
    And see visions
    Of what is to come,
    Of their issue,
    Which has blossomed to manhood and womanhood -
    And seeing thus
    They are happy
    For the day that was leaves no regrets,
    And peace is theirs
    And perfection.

    I speak of the strong men
    Who shoulder their burdens in the hot day,
    Who stand on the market-place
    And bargain in loud voices,
    Showing their stock to the world.
    Straight the glance of their eyes -
    Under their feet the holms blossom,
    The harvest yields.
    The their path is of prosperity.

    I speak of the women,
    Strong hipped, full-bosomed,
    Who drive the cattle to graze at dawn,
    Who milk the cows at dusk.
    Grace in their homes,
    And in the crowded ways
    Modest and seemly -
    Mother of children!

    I speak of the children
    Of the many townlands,
    Blossoms of the Bogland,
    Flowers of the Valley,
    Who know not yesterday, nor to-morrow,
    And are happy,
    The pride of those who have begot them.

    And thus it is,
    Every and always,
    In Ardara, the Rosses and Inishkeel -
    Here, as elsewhere,
    The Weak, the Strong, and the Blossoming -
    And thus my kindred.

    To them Slainthé!

    (This poem can be found in 1000 Years of Irish Poetry: The Gaelic and Anglo Irish Poets from Pagan Times to the Present by Kathleen Hoagland)


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