Last summer, I was asked to serve as Irish tour guide and B&B host to a group of lovely ladies from Baton Rouge, Louisiana. To say we had a great time exploring my little section of Ireland would be an understatement.
Our days were spent seeing the common (Cliffs of Moher, Waterford Crystal, Rock of Cashel) and the lesser-visited (Annestown beach, The Vee Pass, mass at a Holy Well, a session at Jim O’ the Mill)… and of course I “had” to introduce them to various Irish beverages as well.
Well, the ladies have insisted they get a chance to return my Irish hospitality with a bit of their Southern hospitality. So next week, Corey and I are making our way to Louisiana to take them up on the offer. I’m not sure what to expect, but there have been whispers of plantation tours and Cajun cooking… and with Carla, Beverly, and Rene in the mix, as well as Jim, Emily, and Jackie (three other Baton Rouge guests) involved, it’s sure to be grand.
Shipwrecked Shards Debut
As part of the visit, the women have organized a special showing for my shard jewelry. For the event, I wanted to do something very unique and Irish-themed, so I dug into my secret stash of shards. From that, I selected my favorite Irish “chanies” — those are pieces I found on the beach in County Waterford, Ireland… many of them come from English ships that wrecked in the Irish Sea. The result is a gorgeous collection of pins and pendants dating back to the 18th and 19th Centuries.
If you are in the area, you can come down to Gabriella Rothschild’s in Baton Rouge (if you make it, be sure to let us know you’re from the Irish Fireside!), or if you can’t get to Louisiana, you can take a peek in my online store.
The most unique piece is made from a porcelain Virgin Mary statue I found at Annestown Beach in County Waterford. While I was in Ireland, I thought long and hard about what to do with the little figure. Inspiration struck when I found an oddly-shaped oyster shell on Brittas Bay in County Dublin. Combining the two, I created my own version of an Irish Marian shrine… it’s truly a one-of-a-kind.