Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Violets for Howard

I went for a walk outside--the violets are up and blooming.  The fragrance of the white, purple and pink blooms drifts up as I bend to smell their perfume.

Violets are a symbol of faithfulness, their arrival is one of the lovely heralds of spring.

Last Sunday afternoon, while we were on the road, my Sweet Sissy called to let me know that our dear faithful Howard had passed away.  I shall miss him, sorely.  Howard was in his mid-80's -- a loving, kind man who's heart was bigger than the world.  Do you suppose with Howard's arrival in heaven, spring has finally sprung?  He would smile at that suggestion. 

Rest in Peace dear Friend.

Please keep Howard's beloved wife Freddy in your prayers.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Forget Me Not - Pink Saturday

I love this card from Grammie's collection.  What a lovely scene.  Grandma Jenny's sister Tilly often sent the most lovely cards, this one is no exception.  I thought this the perfect card for Pink Saturday.

For more wonderful things in pink, visit Beverly at  How Sweet The Sound

Friday, March 25, 2011

A Joyful Easter - Postcard Friendship Friday #56

Isn't this a lovely postcard?  The delicate colors and beauty of artistic expression just fills my eyes.  It seemed a perfect postcard for this dreary March day.

There is a fascinating bit of history I found about the origins of Easter.  In ancient times, the Saxons celebrated the return of spring with a festival commemorating their goddess of offspring and of springtime -- Eastre. 

As Christianity spread and these ancient peoples embraced Christianity, it became dangerous to expose their new way of thinking.  Many of these courageous individuals were put to death as a result of their faith in Jesus Christ.  

It is said, in order to avoid persecution in those days, early Believers began to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ during the pagan festival of Eastre.  This festival actually occurred during the same time of year as when Christians already celebrated the Risen Christ.  When early Christians chose to celebrate Christ's resurrection during the holiday of Eastre, no one questioned their special observances of the day.  Eventually the old name, Eastre, was changed to its modern spelling, Easter. 

I find the courage and wisdom of these ancient peoples to be remarkable.  Have a Joyous Easter, everyone!  Happy PFF!

* Dave has a wonderful contest going this week--and the winner will receive a piece of his art.  For more details check out his blog, Old Paper Art.  

* Heather also has a contest going! You could win the charming featured postcard!  For more details, visit Send a Postcard A Day.

* Don't forget to visit Gemma at Greyscale Territory for Weekend Mailbox!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

To Greet You at Easter - Pink Saturday

Yes, there IS pink in this cute postcard!  I laughed with the teeny bunnies over these chicks' consternation at the hatching of furry black kittens from that egg.  I believe the one little kitten might be thinkin' dinner.

It was such a cheery postcard, I just had to share it!  Happy Pink Saturday to all.  For more wonderful things in pink, visit Beverly at  How Sweet The Sound!

Friday, March 18, 2011

Erin Go Braugh - Postcard Friendship Friday #55

I have always wondered what Erin go braugh meant.  It is actually the phonetic pronunciation of "Éirinn go brách," which in Irish (Gaelic) means "Ireland Forever." The phrase was an Irish blessing used to express allegiance to Ireland. It could also be translated as "Ireland 'till doomsday," "Ireland until eternity," "Ireland until the end (of time)" or "Ireland until the Day of Judgment."  

As I did my research for today's PFF, I became fascinated with the long history of Irish Pipes.  The first Irish pipes were made of clay and were called Dúidíns.  They were smoked by both men and women and they were an integral part of an Irish wake.

In an Irish Wake, when the deceased was prepared and laid out on a bed or table--often in the largest room of the house--the body was surrounded with lit candles, covered in white linen adorned with black or white ribbons and flowers. Clay pipes, tobacco and snuff were placed on a table nearby. Every male caller was expected to take at least one puff from a pipe. The smoke was believed to keep evil spirits from finding the soul of the person who died.  Occasionally, a pipe was laid on the chest of the deceased.

Some pipes in the olden days were also made of  Meerschaum and porcelain. But these pipes were not for the ordinary Irish man, or woman. Intricately decorated, they were prized as souvenirs. In a wealthy Irish home, they might have been reserved as a "Sunday pipe." 

According to tradition , before smoking, the shank of the clay pipe was dipped into some Guinness or Whiskey. This sealed the mouthpiece and imparted a good flavor to the clay.  Real tobacco was so expensive the peasants could not afford it, so the resourceful Irish came up with a substitute -- coltsfoot, combined with dried wild rose petals and other herbs.  This homemade mix was called "spone."

Happy St. Patrick's Day and Erin Go Braugh!

Don't forget to visit Gemma at Greyscale Territory for Weekend Mailbox.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

A Wish For St. Patrick's Day

This wonderful St. Patrick's Day card was in my Grandmother's collection.  It is gold embossed, and made of very thin paper, which crackles when you open the card.  I like that sound--it makes my ears happy.

May Good luck and happiness follow you
Where ever you go, whatever you do!

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Me and the Beach - Postcard Friendship Friday #54

Good morning everyone. In the next hour Scientists expect a Tsunami to hit the Pacific Northwest including California, Oregon and Washington coasts.  We know so many people who live along these Coastlines--please pray for their safety.   No one knows yet, if there will be just a small wave, or devastating event.  So far, no major damage in Hawaii. 

Our hearts go out to the people of Japan.  The pictures coming in are terrifying.  Vast fires are spreading across the Island.  I can't imagine the utter devastation these people are facing.  Our hearts and prayers go out to Japan.

Don't forget to visit Gemma at Greyscale Territory for Weekend Mailbox.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Flowers and an Irish Pipe - Pink Saturday

This is the only card in my collection, celebrating St. Patrick's Day, in which one can find PINK flowers!  This charming card was given to me by my darling Gramma Gladys, who turned 84 last month.  I'm so honored to have her old cards--I love each and every one of them.

The card was printed in the USA, probably in the late 1960's.  I rather like the style.

Happy Pink Saturday to all.  For more wonderful things in pink, visit Beverly at  How Sweet The Sound

Friday, March 4, 2011

The Wearing of the Green - Postcard Friendship Friday #53

Since Irish blood flows in my veins, I have always loved St. Patrick's Day.  I didn't appreciate the significance of the color Green until I read the stories of the Irish people's struggle for Freedom.   According to many historians the song The Wearing of The Green was written in the mid-1800's by an Irishman from Dublin, Dion Boucicault. 

After America's revolution, the Irish were inspired to seek independence for their own country.   Green became a symbol of sympathy for Irish independence.  I was astonished to discover that at that time in history, the British actually began executing persons found wearing anything green.  

There is nothing more fierce than an Irishman when riled.  The words to the song below are deeply moving.  I have an enduring love for the Irish--they are strong, loyal, plucky and fey.

The Wearing Of the Green (Lyrics)

O Paddy dear, and did you hear the news that going round?
The shamrock is forbid by law to grow on Irish ground;
St. Patrick's Day no more we'll keep, his colours can't be seen,
For there's a bloody law against the wearing of the green.
I met with Napper Tandy and he took me by the hand,
And he said, "How's poor old Ireland, and how does she stand?"
She's the most distressful counterie that ever yet was seen,
And they're hanging men and women for the wearing of the green.

Then since the colour we must wear is England's cruel red,
Sure Ireland's sons will ne'er forget the blood that they have shed.
You may take a shamrock from your hat and cast it on the sod,
It will take root and flourish there though underfoot it's trod.
When law can stop the blades of grass from growing as they grow,
And when the leaves in summer-time their verdure dare not show,
Then will I change the colour that I wear in my caubeen
But 'til that day, please God, I'll stick to wearing of the green.

But if at last our colour should be torn from Ireland's heart,
Our sons with shame and sorrow from this dear old isle will part;
I've heard a whisper of a land that lies beyond the sea
Where rich and poor stand equal in the light of freedom's day.
O Erin, must we leave you driven by a tyrant's hand?
Must we ask a mother's blessing from a strange and distant land?
Where the cruel cross of England shall nevermore be seen,
And where, please God, we'll live and die still wearing of the green!

NOTE:  I have looked everywhere online to find what the connection is between Saint Patrick's Day, the Irish, Ireland and Parrots, but I have been totally unsuccessful in my search.  If anybody out there knows why there are parrots on so many Irish postcards, I'd sure love to hear from you!

To see more wonderful postal stuff, visit Gemma at Greyscale Territory at Weekend Mailbox!