Atom and I are both irish by heritage. Both of our bloodlines are (mostly) deeply rooted in the Emerald Isle. To say I bleed green is an understatement.
For those who know Atom and I well know that we have ALWAYS had a huge St. Patrick’s Day party at our house every year. We’re talking a grand affair with tons of our friends and family packing our home for an evening of food and fun. Traditional irish lamb and beef stew, irish soda bread from a recipe out of a recipe book we bought from Kylemore Abbey on one of our trips to Ireland, Atom’s home brewed stout, Baileys, 8-10 different varieties of imported irish cheeses, irish butter, a ton of fingerling potatoes and of course corned beef (which is actually an American-irish dish rather than a traditional irish meal but whatever. It’s delicious and we still love it and eat it often regardless of the time of year.)
We knew this year would probably be different. We mentally prepared ourselves that we more than likely wouldn’t be having our large party and we were okay with that. We have been busy with renovations with the kitchen and now simultaneously the master bathroom remodel and at the same time tearing down the basement ceiling which can only be done in segments as the dumpster is emptied biweekly. So we ended up just planning a super low key dinner at our place with a couple friends. While I was at work last week Atom went shopping for the corned beef and such. We decided against the lamb stew this year again to keep it super simple. We already had everything we needed for the soda bread at home thank goodness. What I wasn’t prepared for and what surprised me was when Atom told me he couldn’t find any of our favorite irish cheeses anywhere. I was so upset. It sounds silly to be so upset about cheese. But having those irish cheeses at our parties every year were pretty darn important to me. I don’t know why, but they were. And they were darn delicious. Oh well. Nothing I could do about it now. We had some other really delicious cheeses in our fridge that I had impulse bought at the grocery store (who doesn’t love a good quality cheese?!) and I had planned on serving those and making do with what we had instead.
This morning we woke up to some “wintry mix” weather conditions which turned to a bit of snow and icy roads. Bummer because we had planned on a family hike through the wilderness before dinner this evening. Trying to make the best of it, we quickly switched up our plans & decided on a family game day indoors instead.
This afternoon I took a quick trip to the small grocery store here in town for a couple things and as I was walking past the produce aisle toward the back of the store I saw it out of the corner of my eye:
A tiny block of Dubliner irish cheese. I let out a literal gasp and my heart skipped a beat. Tears began to fall and I couldn’t stop them right there in the middle of the supermarket. One tiny block of cheese felt so familiar and I needed that so much today. The joy I felt in that moment over a silly block of cheese meant the world to me.
When our friends arrived for dinner they brought over some lovely desserts along with this:
They had no idea the silly cheese struggle we had been battling all week and just so happened to have this cheese in their fridge. What are the odds?!
I wish I would have taken a photo to share of the soda bread when it was fresh out of the oven but truth be told, we tore into it immediately and devoured it. Sorry friends.
We had a lovely evening and the food was great as always and maybe next year will be a grand affair.
Here’s a photo I dug out from Atom & my first trip to Ireland in 2006, pre kids.
Go raibh tú daibhir i mí-áidh
Agus saibhir i mbeannachtaí
Go mall ag déanamh namhaid, go luath a déanamh carad,
Ach saibhir nó daibhir, go mall nó go luath,
Nach raibh ach áthas agat
Ón lá seo amach.
Beannachtaí na Féile Pádraig!!
May you be poor in misfortune,
Rich in blessings,
Slow to make enemies,
quick to make friends,
But rich or poor, quick or slow,
May you know nothing but happiness
From this day forward
Happy Saint Patrick’s Day!