A Farewell to 2012s

Bonjourno Internet Citizens!

Well the year is quite nearly over. Can you believe we made it through Ragnorak? I didn’t think we could, but as it turns out the magic was inside us the whole time. We didn’t even need the “hubcap of ultimate power,” it was in fact useless.

InfinityThis holiday season was a blur! My tip to you, fair readers, is do not visit another mystical land for 2 weeks in December. It makes the holiday rush so terribly stressful. I did manage to make one infinity scarf for my darling lady friend. I am confident it will keep her neck warm, or at a minimum provide a conversation piece as she attempts to exit it’s many looping folds.

Mr. McCluckin’ and I have been known to host the Feast of the 7 Fishes! This year we had a very serious discussion about the feast and decided to keep it small. Instead of inviting everyone under the sun, we tried to keep the gathering to friends, family and beloved neighborhood scamps. In the end we welcomed 20 people to our home instead of the usual 40 and we served them fishes like never before. There was a trout pate and green curry salmon (these were brought by guests). We made cioppino (fish gut soup), baccala balls (rehydrated fish rolled into balls), sausage and peppers (from pigs) and marinara and noodles. In case you were wondering, I don’t much care for fish. I do on the other hand care for feasts and traditions. So we made our house smell of cat food, no worries, everyone had a ball (made of fish)!

Maybe it was the savagery that came with Ragnorak on the 21st, but this holiday season was insane-pants. Every time I turned around I discovered 7 unfinished tasks. Even as we enter 2013 I realize there’s so much I had hoped to do. On the plus side, there are very few Mayan apocalypses in 2013, so I think it might be a productive year.

Let’s talk about resolutions! I like to make grand resolutions that rarely have any grounding in reality (just like everyone else).

I plan to:

Figure out how to use the Flickr app on my phone.

Ignite my Apple abilities by using the crap out of my iPad.

Overthrow the leaders of Banana Republic and plunder their natural khaki resources.

Read more (expect exciting things on this subject soon!)

Teach the wee dogs to moonwalk.

Visit not-too-distant lands, like Glenwood Springs, Columbus and Boston.

Invent a new language.

Whelp, those seem to all be in order. I expect you internetters to hold me to them! Let’s ring in the new year right with our ____________ (crafty tool) at hand and our _______________ (favorite animal) upon our laps!

Wishing you, yours and the other people you know but don’t count among your inner circle, a very merry new year!

Cheerios,

Henny Penny

Irish You a Merry Winterfest!*

Hallooooo Hungry Hippos and Sneaky Petes,

Where on Earth have you been? Well I can tell you where I’ve been, Ireland. It’s true. I’ve been traipsing about theĀ Emerald Isle without you. Don’t fret, the customs officers revoked my rights to the internet upon entry into the country, so it wasn’t your fault I wasn’t able to speak with you every minute of my trip.

So what’s a holiday in Ireland like? Oh-so-wonderful! It was like walking on cotton candy while having sexy fireman feed you ice cream from a trumpet. Or to be more exact, it’s like wandering through a kaleidoscope of green and blue. Everyone we met was friendly and delightful. Oh yes, did I neglect to mention, Mr. McCluckin’ accompanied me, because as we all know a well-refined hen doesn’t leave the country without a proper gentleman escort. Also, he was paying.

First off, the booze, there was much! Thanks to the help of two high-spirited Irish lads we discovered a new whiskey called Greenore. It’s yummy! Though I doubt they’ll be putting that on the bottle any time soon. It’s very fancy and refined. Also, we toured the Guinness Storehouse and the Tullamore Dew Heritage Centre. Both of which were delightful in their own exceptional ways.

Secondly, the food was almost 100% fabulous! The best of the best was either Cornucopia in Dublin (really, you must try it) or Ard Bia in Galway (again, a do not miss). Followed closely by The Gourmet Tart Co. in Salthill and Wagamama in Dublin. So divine! Anyone that’s told you Irish food isn’t delicious is lying. They are trying to trick you from visiting this fantastic country and making new friends and singing many songs.

Oh and there was singing! So much singing! At Mr. McCluckin’s request we attended a traditional Irish music pub crawl in Dublin. After learning the culture of traditional music playing, the instruments involved and how to identify real, jigs and slip-jigs; everyone joined in on a bit of singing. Oh it was divine! mr. McCluckin’ sang a Billy Joel song and I piped up with a folk song my father used to sing. We were lucky to be on the tour with a group of Swedish tourists with excellent singing voices. All in all, it was a night of excellence and it wrapped up in time for us to hop out to a pub and drink ourselves silly.

We celebrated my hatching day abroad with fine drink and shopping. In fact there may have been a bit too much shopping. I’m not sure we left much of anything in Ireland of other tourists. I haven’t even peeked at our credit card bills just yet. Maybe in a week or so when I feel well-rested again.

I’m working on putting together a Flickr of my photos, until then, enjoy this shot of all the treasures I brought home from the land of Ire.* In fact I best be hopping into bed if I hope to make it to work tomorrow.

From left to right, top to bottom: Row 1: McCluckin’s new murse, Tulamore Dew Warehouse special whiskey, Ireland travel poster, VERY VERY FANCY PILLOW, Row 2: Historical Ireland tea towel, a Claddagh ring, a Guinness soccer ball, clover growing cans, apple syrup, Guinness truffles, a smattering of books, a Guinness cap with a bottle opener on the brim, a jar of strawberry marshmallow fluff, a tin of toffee marked “thanks for watching our pets,” a hand-knitted lady sweater, a cashmere scarf of many colors, Row 3: Artisan Irish chocolate bars, a scarf from Rebecca (so lovely), a tote bag with a unicorn on it, a tin of whiskey fudge, an artsy photo of a monastery, a colouring book, bright orange cashmere gloves. Row 4: More candy!!!, a tiny sheep, Guinness playing cards, a magnet, a claddagh necklace, pub bookmarks, a silver key, Tulamore Dew whiskey truffles, a gaggle of old postcards, Guinness socks, fancy ass chocolate, silly sewing notions, a white manly sweater.

Expect more about Ireland in upcoming posts, including:

How I danced with the ghosts of Clontarf Castle and lived to tell about it! the best way to drink your 7th cup of tea! Where the wild sheep roam! Cheddar and onion crisps, the true enemy at the door!

Smooches for now loves,

XOXO,

Henny Penny

* Phrases marked with this fine and upstanding asterisk may have derived their cleverness from outside, young librarian shaped witsicle.