Wednesday, December 16, 2009

The Leprechaun Has Landed!

Ever since I saw this post on the blog called It's A Leprechaun's Life I had been secretly hoping for something to arrive in my mailbox. You see, Tatskool of the Tats A Kool Challenge tatting blog has been making and giving hand stitched leprechauns to a few lucky recipients each year! The previous recipients have had the most delightful adventures with their leprechauns and then they post about them on the leprechaun blog! Sometimes when two or more tatters who own a leprechaun are going to be at the same tatting event they will bring their leprechauns to the event so that the leprechauns can "meet" each other! The meeting isn't complete until there are photos taken and a blog post about it! It's quite fun to read about it in the leprechaun blog! Apparently the most recent batch of leprechauns had to undergo some grueling interview questions. The questions were asked in order to find those most capable of going out into the world to spread cheer, joy and mischief to whomever they were assigned to! This was quite an ordeal according to Tatskool! So, it may not surprise you that deep down inside I was quietly hoping that my name was on the list of this year's recipients!

You can imagine what I was thinking when I recieved a package in the mail last Friday, December 11th that had these stamps on the top of the padded envelope!
These beautiful irish stamps that say "ÉIRE"!

My heart skipped a beat when I saw that the return address said "Ireland"!

Further investigation revealed a brightly wrapped Christmas package!!!Something was just a little odd about this package! You see, it was squirming! Yes! The package was wriggling around and then I heard mumbling as the paper began to tear open by itself...or so it seemed!

To my delighted surprise a cheerily dressed leprechaun emerged from the gold and red wrapping paper!

Stiofán had arrived!
He held in his arms one of Tatskool's most popular HDT's (Hand Dyed Thread) called "Rainbow Bright". He offered it to me rather ceremoniously, telling me that this was mine and I could tat a lovely bit of tatting of whatever I chose. I thanked him graciously, of course!

He was kind enough to pose for some pictures. When I mentioned to him that he is quite photogenic he surreptitiously agreed. He then went on to explain that he had done some modeling in Ireland for an exclusive magazine for leprechauns called "Leprechaun's Quarterly". He said he even made the cover once! I asked him why he was acting so timid about it. He admitted that he didn't mention it during the interview with Tatskool's lep, named Fergeal, for fear he might be taken as a shallow leprechaun and that it might hurt his chances for traveling abroad. After this was revealed he did seem more at ease when he saw that I was not the least bit phased by his confession. In fact, he agreed to pose for more photos! He even did some close ups!

He said this one looked a lot like the photo that made the cover for "Leprechaun's Quarterly".

In his right hand he holds an Irish penny that says "éire 2003".

His festive red belt is festooned with a chain of lucky green tatted clovers and beautiful green glass beads!

What I really wanted to show you was the painstaking detail that has gone into Stiofán's creation!

Note the tiny hand stitched threads that make the detail of his face!

He even has a twinkle in his eye!

One of the first things that Stiofán did was teach me how to pronounce his name properly. He says it is a name from the Old Irish tongue and is pronounced thusly:


He even showed me a website that has the pronunciation key for Ancient Irish pronunciations! What a clever!
Stiofán is the Old Irish equivalent for the modern English name of Stephan (Steven).

When he looked around my living room he asked me what all the stacks of books were for. You see, currently I am in the process of creating an alphabetical index of my personal tatting library. I have all of my tatting books in stacks according to the letter of the alphabet the title begins with.

He marched over to the tallest stack...the "T's" [of course (T is for Tatting)]...and began his climb to the top of the stack. This was quite a feat for the little guy seeing as the stack was well over a foot high! Well, of course I had to take a picture of him once he made it to the top!Can you see that mischievous look in his eye? Doesn't it look like he's going to hurl that penny at me? He swears he was just waving, but he has that gleam in his eye! LOL!

Well, before Stiofán and I bid you farewell for the evening I'd like to invite you to be sure to say hello! I know it's been a while since I posted, but I have not disappeared from bloggerlandia completely! I promise that! I have lots to blog about so stay tuned!

and Stiofán, too!


Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Rory Arrives!!!

The mystery gift has been opened! Conor just couldn't wait and ripped into the package like a monkey on a banana!! And, lo and behold... there was a leprechaun inside bearing a gift! Conor was so excited he didn't know what to do first! (He has been a little sad lately, having gone thru a little upset of his own, but we will blog about that later.) He grabbed the thread to get a closer look... ooh such lovely colors. He wants me to use it very soon to make something lovely.

Well, then, being mischievious leps, they got into a tug o' war! But, it was all in fun, and soon were hugging it out!

Then, Rory showed us the letter from his Mum, explaining his real name is Ruari, but that we could call him Rory. And how he has come to live with Conor and me to be Conor's BFF!

Well now, Conor is so happy! He got out his new toys he got for Christmas (of course, Mom let him open early because of the special circumstances) and he and Rory had a great old time playing on the Christmas rubber duckies!

I can see this is going to be a wonderful friendship. Conor and I are also very curious to see who else was on Fergeal's list of leprechaun recipients!
Conor and I want to thank Tatskool and Fergeal for thinking of us, and sending us such a great little friend for Christmas.


Thursday, December 10, 2009

Leprechauns spread even further round the world. all know my Leprechaun Fergeal and his siblings.

You can catch up on my blog by either searching for Leprechaun in my side bar labels..I see there are 10 posts OR in the search engine at the top of the blog. This helps me enormously when I can't remember if I posted some tatting or not! It might help you if you want to know how much thread to use for a project and I might have made it!
Also you can read ALL the posts in this blog.

sitting........................waiting for you to catch up.........................twiddling my hubby actually does this................while he is waiting at traffic lights.................who else does....................?

OK welcome back now I don't have to explain any more!

So lets start again.....

Fergeal has a list...(just like Santa Claus...only Fergeal checks his list every day). His list is all the tatters that he would like to have a Leprechaun.....

The problem is that he is such a gregarious little soul that his list gets longer and longer ...every day!!

I keep telling him "Fergeal, how do you think I can make all those Leprechauns, have you any idea how long it takes just to make one???"

Obviously he hasn't!

So I finally put my foot down and told him that I couldn't possibly make any this year.

He was not happy!

"If you stop that silly tatting you would have plenty of time!"

mmm I think I have heard that before!!

Well anyway, Fergeal decided that there was no option but to take matters into his own hands, handicapped as he is by his lucky Irish cent.

Nope, it's not what you think...he didn't borrow my felt, scissors, needles and thread.... he took the easy way out and he advertised in the Leprechaun Times....for Leprechauns willing to travel.... outside their homeland.....not afraid to learn new things...ambassadors for their country...and so on.

I didn't think that even one would apply..they are all so cosy at home....

But they must have been intrigued and so was I when he came and told me that he had seven!! (good job it wasn't the seven dwarves!!)

You might think that this was the end of the story...Oh no!

Fergeal decided that he had to interview make sure that they were of good character and wouldn't let us down!!

There's more....

He said that he couldn't possibly interview them..where he normally lives...on top of the piano...watching me......Oh no!! he wanted his own office!!

I hope it keeps fine for him I thought!

Well it may have noticed how the Leprechauns seem to get their own way...a lot. William has his own van and sets off whenever he feels the need....Oisin goes to college and let us not forget Brendan (the naviagator!) who was determined to see the world that he left his post and went AWOL! No we could never forget Brendan.

Fergeal didn't want a repeat of that.................and so I found myself in Leprechaun Office Supplies....with my credit card...bad move......

It seemed that not only did he want a desk and chair...but he wanted to upgrade his entire lifestyle!! He told me he wanted antique Irish furniture....solid mahogany circa 1850 ( he has been watching too many Antique Roadshows!

In yer dreams Fergeal!

Well to cut a long story short, he got ready for the interviews... I looked up and there was a line of Leprechauns waiting for their turn....pushing and shoving and nearly falling over each other, so eager were they.

A motley lot they look too!

Now there are no prizes...(but you can guess anyway)....for guessing which day Fergeal chose for his interviews???...think now think!.....or what he was going to ask them. All answers on a blank cheque please!

One by one they answered his gruelling questions, he even let them sit on his brand new rocking chair..... did they know what that mysterious object on his desk was?....

... the others relaxed on his new three piece suite!...and chatted amongst themselves...wonder what they were thinking...were they a teeny bit afraid of what they were letting themselves in for.

What was Fergeal holding in his hand and what was he going to use those books for that he had on his desk.....was he going to make them swear an many questions I was dying to ask...but i was going to have to can't afford to interrupt a Leprechaun doing his job.....remember that!

Every now and again he would get up and go over to his antique globe (note that it's an antique...well he thinks it is anyway!), give it twirl and peer into it and scratch his head.

Finally, finally the were all sent home, and I got to quiz him.

He was chuntering away to himself.

"What's up lad?" I dared to ask.

"One of them's a girl!!"
was his reply.
"A girl, I ask you who has ever heard of girl such thing!"

"mmmm!"I dared to reply, "if there are no girl leprechauns, where do you think you came from???"

Well if looks could kill!!

Looks to me like my brave little fellow fancies her, though he would never admit it.

I asked him how he knew it was a girl!!! He tapped the side of his nose knowingly and said that he knew all right, she may have been dressed like leprechaun but it was the little things that gave her away!!!

She was the first one that he called back and I did do a photo shoot while he wasn't looking.....but that's for another day.

As for the others he said they knew sod all about tatting, some of them had never heard of it.....but they were all keen....well wouldn't you be he said if you were offered the opportunity to travel the world.

I think he is jealous...he keeps on at me that I promised him a world tour!!

So anyway back to the job in hand....he has sent them away to the Lep Academy for their tatting/spy training and they just arrived back the other day.

I wonder where he has decided to send them.

I guess I will soon know.