March 11, 2014

Leprechauns and Irish Folklore

We LOVE St. Patrick's Day at our house! I've told this story before, but at year 3 or 4 of my blog (?? which is it??) I'm totally repeating my material. Enjoy! Growing up, St. Paddy's was not much of a thing. I never had corned beef and cabbage until I was 30 years old and Andrew suggested we make some. I thought that sounded REALLY GROSS. Little did I know that corned beef and cabbage is pretty much the best thing ever.

Leprechauns were not a big thing in Hawaii, but menehunes were ~ they are basically the Hawaiian equivalent. I'm pretty sure there are totally a lot of leprechauns living in the West Maui Mountains, and I'm pretty sure that someday when I go to Ireland, I will find definitive evidence of leprechauns, or maybe a fairy ring. Julia and I are convinced that we've been seeing fairy rings everywhere lately and the other day, Julia TOTALLY FOUND A FOUR LEAF CLOVER. Andrew confirmed it. Then they showed it to me. Yep, 4 parts.

So what does that mean? Should I buy a lottery ticket?

I got 'Leprechauns and Irish Folklore' by Mary Pope Osborne and Nathalie Pope Boyce as an early St. Paddy's gift for Julia. Early gift as in, I bought it and accidentally left it in plain sight, and then Julia found it.

Friends......this happens ALL THE TIME.

The leprechaun folklore book is meant to be a companion book to one of the books in the Magic Tree House series, 'Leprechaun in Late Winter', which Julia bought with her birthday bookstore gift card money that she got from her aunty.

 Anyway, both books are really fun and great, but it's the folklore book that really has Julia going right now...she loves it, it's full of really interesting Irish mythical factoids about weird sounding alternative leprechauns called 'clurichauns' ~ what are THOSE?? I'm like, super on top of my folklore and legend material, and I had never heard of those???

 "clurichauns really hate to work. instead, they love to drink wine and have fun."

I have this to say to the clurichauns: PLEASE COME BE MY FRIENDS.

There's also tons of fun info about banshees (death fairies), which....don't those totally sound like the dementors from Harry Potter?

Also, pookas, ballybogs (peatbog fairies that resemble trolls), charms, baby snatching, fairy mischief and lore about Irish kings. So much awesome! I would have adored this book when I was young. Lots of pix, lots of interesting details, art and photographs of actual Irish geography.

This is a neato little book, and not hard to understand and not too boring. I'm very big on the Not Boring. Great for ages 6-10.

I have a few Irish and English fairy tale books that are real deal compilations of folklore that clearly were not written for children, and they are boring and have no pictures and are only for reading with a bottle of irish whiskey in one hand and a harp in the other. DON'T TRY THAT AT HOME WITH THE KIDS!


  1. I am a HUGE fan of the Magic Treehouse books! I love how they're instilling interest in both history and geography in my six year old- we've just finished the Abe Lincoln one- 47 I think?- and are waiting with bated breath for the next one to come out in paperback. LOVED the Leprechaun one! I've told my son that when he goes back and reads them himself that we'll get the accompanying fact tracker books. Great post!

  2. Yes. Let Julia pick the ticket though. Maybe a scratch off?

  3. Yes do buy a lottery ticket! I was and still am afraid of leprechauns. Don't know why but I just am scared of them!!!!

  4. My sons enjoyed Mary Pope Osborne's books. This one looks great.

  5. Oh, I want to read these! The girls would love them. I want my voice back!!!! I didn't even get to read Fiona's Luck to Big Sis's class yesterday. Yes, I have officially reached the whiny stage of sick, but I can't actually whine, so I type-whine instead.