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DECK THE HOLIDAY'S

Friday, September 19, 2014

THE PUCK FAIR, IRELANDS OLDEST FAIR!



Killorglin

    For communities like Killorglin to survive against the often overpowering commercial pressures imposed by their larger, urbanised neighbours it takes an inherent, deep seated tenacity. To say that the industrial and economic success of the town came about as a result of being ably represented politically, at the right time - is true - but only part of the overall picture. This train of thought displays an ignorance of how these market towns, strategically set down at cross-roads, not only survive against fierce odds but indeed thrive. A cursory glance at the history of any such town will reveal the growing pains and battle scars endured by generations to get us to where we are today.








    Rivers played a huge role in the establishment of trade centres and in Killorglin's case the Laune with its link and proximity to the well sheltered Castlemaine Harbour must have presented a very attractive location to the first travellers - commercial or otherwise. Political historians will recall the late Timothy Chub O'Connor extolling the virtues of his native patch and he painted a picture with the kind of infectious enthusiasm that industrialists found impossible to ignore.









    The vibrancy of the community is marked by the ever increasing list of events sprinkled throughout the year and the world famous Puck Fair has been added to by festivals like the 'The Wild Flower of the Laune Vintage Harvest Festival' and the recently revived Head of the River Regatta. The mammoth, annual undertaking that is the pantomime is yet another of the great logistical wonders so crucial to the survival of the spirit of community involvement.

History/Origins

    The most widely mentioned story relating to the origin of King Puck, associates him with the English Ironside Leader Oliver Cromwell. It is related that while the "Roundheads" were pillaging the countryside around Shanara and Kilgobnet at the foot of the McGillycuddy Reeks, they routed a herd of goats grazing on the upland. The animals took flight before the raiders, and the he-goat or "Puck" broke away on his own and lost contact with the herd. While the others headed for the mountains he went








towards Cill Orglain (Killorglin) on the banks of the Laune. His arrival there in a state of semi exhaustion alerted the inhabitants of the approaching danger and they immediately set about protecting themselves and their stock.
    It is said that in recognition of the service rendered by the goat, the people decided to institute a special festival in his honour and this festival has been held ever since.
Other legends regarding the origin of "King Puck" relates to the time of Daniel O'Connell, who in 1808 was an unknown barrister. It seems that before that year, the August fair held in Killorglin had been a toll fair, but an Act of the British Parliament empowered the Viceroy or Lord Lieutenant in Dublin to make an order, at his own discretion, making it unlawful to levy tolls at cattle, horse or sheep fairs. Tolls in










Killorglin at this time were collected by the local landlord - Mr Harman Blennerhassett - who had fallen into bad graces with the authorities in Dublin Castle and as a result the Viceroy robbed him of his right to levy tolls. Blennerhassett enlisted the services of the young Daniel O'Connell, who in an effort to reverse the decision decided that goats were not covered by the document and that the landlord would be legally entitled to hold a goat fair, and levy his tolls as usual. Thus the fair was promptly advertised as taking place on August 10th, 1808, and on that day a goat was hoisted on a stage to show to all attending that the fair was indeed a goat fair - thus Blennerhassett collected his toll money and Killorglin gained a King.
    Whatever its origins, the fair has long been and continues to be the main social, economic and cultural event in the Killorglin Calendar. It is a time when old friends meet, when new friendships are forged and the cares of everyday living are put on hold.



1613 to Today

    There are many legends which suggest an origin for the Fair, many of which are wildly inventive, but there is no written record stating when the Fair started. It can however be traced back to a charter from 1603 by King James I granting legal status to the existing fair in Killorglin.
    It has been suggested that it is linked to pre-Christian celebrations of a fruitful harvest and that the male goat or "Puck" was a pagan symbol of fertility, like the pagan god Pan.










    The origins of the fair have thus been lost in the midst of antiquity, and various commissions set up over the past two hundred years have tried in vain to date them. Evidence suggests that the fair existed long before written record of everyday occurrences were kept as there is one written reference from the 17th Century in existence which grants Jenkins Conway, the local landlord at the time, the right to collect a sum for every animal brought to the August Fair. This would suggest that the Fair was something already well established in the local community.

DIY HALLOWEEN CLAY POT JACK O' LANTERNS!





Those of us who love room plants probably already has plenty of different pots with them. Halloween is coming and it’s probably a good idea to decorate one of them or a new one in the manner that shows how you do like this holiday. Happy Pumpkin Pot is the project that you can done by yourself and it would make you happy every time you see it.



Here are materials you’ll need:
  • Acrylic paints of different colors
  • #1 liner brush
  • ½” flat brush
  • #4 round brush
  • 1¼” foam spouncer
  • 2 25mm wiggly eyes
  • Glue
  • Clay pot of your choice


The process of painting is quite easy, but if you need instructions, go to Plaid for them.

WEREWOLVES, MADE UP CREATURE OR REALITY!!!






    When the moon is full it is said that the canine shape shifters prowl the night seeking new prey! Gypsies around the world tell folktales that warn about the anthropomorphic wolf-men cursed to endure a life of transmutation when the moon is full, becoming a predatory killer until the sun rises.
    Are these half-human, half-wolf "monsters" real, or are they a figment of our imagination, that people ages ago created to explain shadows in the night? Could these shape shifters actually exist? Perhaps Hollywood has instilled a false memory and predisposition for beings of the night, like vampires, zombies and werewolves. Maybe latent fear of the unknown drives the human mind to justify their fear of the dark by creating and believing in strange and bizarre creatures.
     Then it may also be true-werewolves may be more than mythical creatures in stories told by many people with roots that run deep in the old country of their origin. The gypsies may tell tales embellished by years of remembering, but based upon a truth shrouded in mystery and intrigue.

Common Beliefs About Werewolves
  1. The modern day name may come from the Old English "wer-wolf" (where 'wer' means 'man).
  2. Then again the name could come from the Norse legends about the 'berserkers'. who were crazed warriors that dressed as wolves when they savagely raided and pillaged villages in the northern land or Europe.
  3. One more good possibility could be it came from the word "warg-wolf". another name of Norse origin which denotes a rogue or lone wolf type of character prone to stalk their prey before dealing the death blow.
  4. Were-wolves eyebrows come together and there is no skin space between them.
  5. It is said by some that they have "bristles" under their tongue.
  6. When they are in the wolf form they have no tail, keep their human eyes and can speak in human language,not just canine woofs and howls.
  7. When they shift into wolf mode they are said to have super strength and extremely sensitive senses, such as sight and scent.
  8. It is reported in Europe in the 1700's that werewolves would dig up freshly buried corpses to eat.
  9. Scandinavian were-wolves were reported as being old women with poison claws that could paralyze children with their glaring eyes.
  10. The curse which transforms a person into a werewolf is often seen as occurring from a evil allegiance or by being bit or scratched by one who is a werewolf. It has also been deemed by many cultures as being a "divine punishment". During the dark era of the Middle Ages the Catholic Church investigated excommunicated priests who were accused of becoming werewolves.
  11. Taking an oath with Satan or powers of evil is usually the reported path to becoming a werewolf and transformation from bites is rarely a recorded occurrence in historical writings.
  12. The fact that they can be killed by silver bullets is a modern movie generated folk factoid. All tales about werewolves prior to the late 1800's do not talk about silver as a protector from the creatures.
  13. Religious holy water or icons (such as a crucifix) do not keep them away.
  14. Items that will protect you from a werewolf are garland of fresh rye, mistletoe and garlic cloves.
  15. Some modern day researchers believe that werewolves were real people afflicted with a medical condition called hypertrichosis. This is a hereditary disease that caused extreme hair growth all over the body, especially on the face and hands.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

A GUIDE TO ZOMBIE SURVIVAL INFOGRAPHIC!

Guide to Zombie Survival Infographic

ST. ANTHONY'S FEAST DAY!!








    Catholic Feast days are days set aside to remember important people who lived extraordinary lives. Feast days were celebrated through the course of Our faith from the time of Mary's birth all the way through today honoring the saints. Most saints and holy people have specially designated feast days. On those days we remember these holy men and women in a special way. Saint Anthony of Padua died on June 13th, 1231, which is his feast day.












Customs of St. Anthony's Festival

    On the Feast of this most wonderful of Saints, your priest might bless lilies for you to keep (this isn't a universal practice). The blessing of lilies, which remind us of St. Anthony's purity and have always been a symbol for him, stems from a miracle which took place in Revolutionary France: many priests and religious were murdered, so many churches and convents destroyed, but the faithful still showed up at a surviving church on the Feast of St. Anthony. Months later, it was discovered that lilies that had adorned the church at that feast were still fresh. Let the lilies beautify your house, or carry them with you, or press them in a book, etc. If your priest doesn't bless lilies, you can still use them non-sacramentally to remind you of one of the greatest Saints ever. The English of the Blessing of the Lilies is as follows:











The Blessing of Lilies on the Feast of St. Anthony

The priest vests in surplice and white stole, and says:

P: Our help is in the name of the Lord.
All: Who made heaven and earth.
P: The Lord be with you.
All: And with thy spirit.
P: Let us pray. God, the Creator and Preserver of the human race, the Lover of holy purity, the Giver of supernatural grace, and the Dispenser of everlasting salvation; bless + these lilies which we, Thy humble servants, present to Thee today as an act of thanksgiving and in honor of St. Anthony, Thy confessor, and with a request for Thy blessing. Pour out on them, by the saving sign + of the holy cross, Thy dew from on high. Thou in Thy great kindness hast given them to man, and endowed them with a sweet fragrance to lighten the burden of the sick. Therefore, let them be filled with such power that, whether they are used by the sick, or kept in homes or other places, or devoutly carried on one's person, they may serve to drive out evil spirits, safeguard holy chastity, and turn away illness--all this                       through the prayers of St. Anthony--and finally impart to Thy servants grace and peace; through Christ our Lord.
All: Amen.










Then he sprinkles the lilies with holy water, saying:

P: Sprinkle me with hyssop, Lord, and I shall be clean of sin. Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. Pray for us, St. Anthony.
All: That we may be worthy of Christ's promise.
P: Let us pray. We beg Thee, O Lord, that Thy people may be helped by the constant and devout intercession of Blessed Anthony, Thy illustrious confessor. May he assist us to be worthy of Thy grace in this life, and to attain everlasting joys in the life to come; through Christ our Lord.
All: Amen.

After this the lilies are distributed to the people.












    Another custom on this day is known as "St. Anthony's Bread" and goes back to A.D. 1263 when a child drowned near the Basilica of St. Anthony in Padua as it was still being built. The mother besought St. Anthony and promised that if her child were restored to life, she would give to the poor an amount of wheat equal to the weight of her child. Of course her son was saved, and her promise was kept. "St. Anthony's Bread," then, is the promise of giving alms in return for a favor asked of God through St. Anthony's intercession (the custom also takes place throughout the year when parents give alms after placing their baby under the patronage of St. Anthony). In some places, the custom has a literal parallel in that loaves of bread might be blessed and given away at church or, generally, to the poor.
    Because of St. Anthony's history of being invoked by single women in search of a husband, today is a good day for single people who have a vocation to marriage to make a visit to a church or shrine dedicated to St. Anthony!













    In Lisbon, his birthplace, it is a traditional day for getting married (women who get married on this day are called "brides of St. Anthony"). So popular are weddings on this day in Lisbon, that the city hall hosts them for free if the couple are poor. St. Anthony altars are built and decorated, parades are held, bonfires lit, grilled sardines and sangria are enjoyed.








Sangria
1 (750-ml) bottle red wine (Rioja, if possible)
1/4 cup brandy
1/4 cup orange flavored liqueur (triple sec or Grand Marnier)
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 orange, thinly sliced
1/2 lemon, thinly sliced
1 apple, cored, and cut into thin wedges
1 (750-ml) bottle sparkling water, chilled
    Combine everything but the sparkling water in a large plastic container or glass pitchers. Cover and chill completely, 1 to 2 hours. When ready to serve, add the sparkling water, pour over ice cubes, and enjoy.
    It is also customary to decorate with pots of sweet basil (Ocimum basilicum) and to give some away to friends with prayers invoking our Saint (tea made from basil is good for headaches, fevers, stomach aches, and indigestion -- but it should not be drunk by pregnant women).











    Finally, because he is also especially cherished by the Italian people, parishes with large Italian populations                       might host great festivals on this day, rather like the Italian festivals held in honor of St. Joseph on 19 March, so keep an eye out for one in your area.

Note: Because St. Anthony was buried on a Tuesday and many miracles accompanied his funeral, Tuesdays are special days of honoring him throughout the year. It is customary to pray a Novena to him on thirteen consecutive Tuesdays.







A Multitude of Fish

    No sooner had he spoken a few words when suddenly so great a multitude of fish, both small and great, approached the bank on which he stood. All the fish kept their heads out of the water, and seemed to be looking attentively on St Anthony's face; all were ranged in perfect order and most peacefully, the smaller ones in front near the bank, after them came those a little bigger, and last of all, were the water was deeper, the largest.
    As he continued speaking, the fish began to open their mouths and bow their heads, endeavoring as much as was in their power to express their reverence. The people of the city, hearing of the miracle, made haste to go and witness it.

IT'S TIME FOR A ANOTHER HELPING OF CANDY FACTS!!! YYYUUUUMMMMM!!

   Candy Corn, Tootsie Rolls, Snickers, and Hershey's Chocolate products are popular with trick or treaters.  Other than how good they taste, what else is there to know about these yummy treats?  Take a look at some of these fun candy facts.










  Candy Corn was invented in the 1880s by George Rennigner.
   The oldest company to produce the surgary corn is The Goelitz Company which is now known as the Jelly Belly Company.  They have used the same recipe for over 100 years.  Can't get enough of this Halloween classic?  At the moment, you can buy 10 pound for $81 dollars.   Approximately 9 billion pieces of it will be made each year.





   Tootsie Rolls were invented in 1896 by Leo Hirshfield.  The product is named after Hirschfield's daughter whose nickname was "Tootsie".  In 1896 Tootsie Roll cost one cent.  In fact, it was the first "individually wrapped penny candy".  Over 100 years later, consumers can still find Tootsie Rolls for a penny.  The Tootsie Company makes 64 million Tootsie Rolls a day.






 A fun online Chicago Tribune article suggested that if your favorite Halloween treat is Snickers, it means you probably have an indecisive personality.  "Do you want chocolate?  Do you want nuts?  You don't know.  Or do you?"  Snickers is the most popular chocolate bar in the entire world.  Snickers got its name from a horse.  There are around sixteen peanuts in each Snickers bar.  They are made by The Mars Company.










 Hershey's produces around 30 different chocolate products that can be given out to trick or treaters on Halloween.  Most people probably know that Hershey's Chocolates are made in Hershey, Pennsylvania.  The town got its name from the chocolate and its inventor Milton Hershey.  But did you know that before it was named Hershey, the town was known as Derry Church?  Here is a link to The Hershey Company.

   Think chocolate is boring? Archie Mcphee sells fun Halloween themed products such as gummy maggots, brain flavored zombie mints, and voodoo pop.
   According to AOL, the average American household spends $45 dollars on Halloween food and candy.  Candied apples are a popular Halloween treat, but their origin remains unknown.  Dan Walker is sometimes credited with the invention of the caramel apple, but others believe he was only involved in marketing caramel apples while working at Kraft Foods in the 1950s.


Wednesday, September 17, 2014

DIY PARANORMAL PORTRAITS!

   This was found at www.countryliving.com .  I really like this idea.  Even having the eyes glowing or blinking on and off.


Paranormal Portraits

You'll never look at loved ones the same way after transforming their images into a ghostly display.






STEP 1: Make a black-and-white copy of a portrait on printer paper and cut out.


STEP 2: To "age" the picture, lightly brush it with a sponge dipped in a solution of a few drops of black craft paint mixed with water. Let the paper dry.


STEP 3: Cut a piece of card stock the same size as the photo, glue to the photo's back, and let dry. With an X-Acto knife, cut out the eyes of the picture's subject(s), piercing through the card stock and creating holes about 1/4 inch in diameter.


STEP 4: Open the frame's back, remove the glass, then fit the photo inside.


STEP 5: Insert red mini LED Christmas lights (try Superior Holiday Lighting's flattop version, $11.26 for a 25-foot string; 1000bulbs.com) through the back of the eyeholes. Plug in the lights, then replace the frame's backing — securing it with tape if necessary — and drape with fake cobwebs.


Steal this idea! Add a little extra bite to your photos with fangs: Cut small triangles from white paper and glue or tape them to the subject's mouth.