You can see our jewelry at www.connemaramarble.com and for Mother’s Day in the USA we have 15% discount on all our Mother’s Day gifts, Sláinte , Stephen.
Hello and welcome to my May newsletter.
Well , the month began with a holiday weekend – the first Monday in May is a national holiday, and the mood in the nation is more upbeat these days with news of further easing of restrictions and more normality returning to our lives. From May 10th we can travel throughout Ireland ; as our quarry is located in County Galway we plan to get out there as soon as possible to lift some marble- we have almost run out in our workshop, so the easing of restrictions has come in the nick of time.
I love May , the weather improves, the flowers are in bloom and they days get longer and longer . In fact the beginning of may is associated with the Celtic festival of La Bealtaine. This marked the start of the season of blossoming flowers and fruit trees . Funny thing, I was looking at my own apple trees and noticed that they are bursting with blooms – signs of a great harvest of apples later in the year !
Back to Bealtaine – this festival was marked with burning of large fires at the beginning of May , using wood from different types of trees. Each trees wood would have a spiritual meaning and were thought to play an important part in the fertility of land and livestock in the coming year.
May is also known as the month of Mary ; and many Catholics will pay tribute this month to Mary, the mother of Jesus. Its also the time for first communions, and processions.
Interestingly enough , this tradition of May religious devotion stretches way back to the Greeks who dedicated the month of May to the god Artemis, and the Romans dedicated the month to honour Flora, the goddess of bloom and blossoms.
I know that in the USA and Canada , Mother’s day will be celebrated on May 9th ; In Ireland we celebrated this special day way back in March . How the dates have diverged, I don’t know !!
Another bit of Irish folklore around May Day … on the eve of May Day it was a tradition to gather yellow flowers, such as Buttercups, primroses and marigolds and spread them outside of each home. It was believed that these flowers would bring luck to the household and prevent Caileachs from entering the home. A Caileach was a hag or a witch who might enter your home on May day and steal butter or milk .It was considered a good turn to put yellow flowers outside a neighbours house to wish them luck and as a gesture of goodwill to help prevent the Caileach from entering their home.
And finally, another nugget of May lore . The morning dew of May Day was considered to have great power ; washing your face with this water was believed to bring you good health for the coming year !!
So, on that note of optimism, I hope that wherever you are the days are brighter, the evenings longer and may a ray of sunshine warm you in the coming month.
Stay well and with best wishes from Ireland,