Happy 4th!

Happy 4th of July!

We had some fun with Sparklers and other fireworks in the front yard this evening. Bridget was very delighted with them. My personal favorite was called “Purple Rain”. And really, with a name like that, how could it not be awesome?!


Happy St. Patrick’s Day

In honor of my people (and in particular, my family) I’m going to celebrate by playing this:

Here’s what I’ve found:

During the uprising of 1798, John Kelly of Killane Co. Wexford, Ireland, was detailed by the Commander-in-Chief, Bagenal Harvey, to bring in all the available men from the Barony of Bantry for the planned attack on New Ross. He was seriously wounded in Michael Street, New Ross, following the successful attack on Three Bullet Gate. He was recovering in Wexford Town when it was recaptured by the British. A yeoman sergeant who was a neighbour and whose life he had saved some days before, gave evidence against him. He was hanged on Wexford Bridge, his trunk conveyed to the water and his head trailed and kicked along the streets before being spiked. Friends recovered the head and brought it to Killane for burial and a monument was later erected on the spot.

While there’s no evidence that we’re related, Killane is in County Wexford, where our line is rumored to have emigrated from. We also have multiple John’s in our line, including the first in our line to come to America (born around 1799).

For fun, I think I may just tell our son that this is for whom he’s named.

some more

Since we got a brand spanking new iMac with a crazy big screen (TWENTY SEVEN INCHES!) I’ve been going through our zillions of photos and enjoying browsing through them without them being obscured by seven tiny one pixel wide lines. I am particularly enjoying the old Antoszewski/Graham photos that I scanned a few years ago. Some of the ones I like the most I really don’t know too much about.


This woman, for example, looks awesome. Clearly, a baby has just been Baptized in Baltimore City.  [UPDATE: This is my Great Aunt Dolores (and now that I know that, I can see that it is her) and the baby is my dad!]
Next up, my Great Uncle Mike (on the right) looking quite dashing left). An interesting character, that guy.
Some people (a few of them Great Aunts, I think) posing with a giant bottle of Old Forester Bourbon. There are several other photos in this alley, so it’s someone’s house — my great grandparents’ maybe.
Finally, some delightfully chubby babies.


ho ho ho

Christmas at the Kelly household was a lot of fun. Bridget slept until almost 8am on Christmas Eve, so we were convinced we were in for a 4am wakeup call; it ended up she made it until 6:30 and stayed in her room — with grandma — until about 7. It took all her will-power to be patient at the top of the stairs (where you can see straight down into the living room) until Bren went down and turned on the lights and took the customary picture on the stairs.

She had a blast opening all of her (and most of John’s) presents. She loved everything of course. Well, except for when she opened the puppet theater. The back of the package was facing her when she unwrapped it and she said, “I don’t want a box.”

[More photos of Christmas (and the snow) are in the gallery.]

quite nice

This weekend was really great. Yesterday was the much anticipated TU ReU. Yes, it actually all came together. The pavilion at the McKeldin Recreation Area was just about as perfect as it could be: just the right size, in the shade, right next to the playground. Just about everyone could make it, too. I packed my camera, but ended up taking ZERO pictures. Hopefully others who did will send them around. Everyone seemed to have a really great time. We all made each other the usual promises to see each other more often, but you know, who knows. Everyone has their people that they still talk to.  I certainly will try.

Later on, after a bit of driving around trying to figure things out, a few of us hung out at the Victoria Gastro Pub. In a bit of a classic move, it was right across the parking lot from the hotel where my friends were staying and I didn’t even notice until we were inside. There it was, right out of the window! Inside it was really nice. Great atmosphere. The food was good, too. Though I’m not sure why it took as long as it did for the first round and our food, what we ate was yummy. The beer choices were quite extensive, and a lot of the beers from the Muskoxen QFTB were on the menu, but the ones that I sampled were only just OK. Maybe just a matter of what was selected. However, Shade’ did order some cocktails both were pretty horrible.

We also had reservations at the gastro pub for brunch today. Same sort of experience. Food was excellent: French toast for Brendan and his mom and eggs benedict for me, but it seemed to take a bit (although being Mother’s Day brunch, it’s not too unexpected). The waitress was really great with Bridget, too.

All in all, it was a really great weekend. (You know, except for the traffic on the way home.)

just my luck

We had been planning on visiting Brendan’s brother and his family this weekend in Texas. Unfortunately, seeing as they live across the street from the school that was just recently closed due to several cases of the swine flu, we won’t be going. What are my chances that we’ll get a partial refund or vouchers for our airplane tickets?

ho ho ho!


We had a pretty Merry Christmas around these parts. Brendan and I are both a little bit sick, so we didn’t do the full Irish breakfast as we have done the past two years. We meant to this morning, but still haven’t done it. The bacon will have to be cooked soon. Perhaps tomorrow.


We spent Christmas Eve with my family and just hung out here yesterday (we’re still hanging out here today and for the forseeable future). It’s been pretty relaxing. 

All the photos are in the gallery, and Brendan even posted 10 minutes of Bridget opening presents on you tube. (It’s really not that exciting.)

We’re gearing up to do some household re-arranging (which I love) over the next few days, and 2/3 of the other Muskoxen are coming to visit for New Years. Excitement abounds! That’s just how we roll.


I was hoping that once I finally decided to whip up a batch of viryta (vitatis), I’d get some flashback memory of my grandmother, or even my great-grandmother. Alas, nothing of the sort. At least I will have vitatis.

These pictures are the closest you will get to the family recipe:



And the finished product




I went to my aunt’s house today and scanned some of my grandparent’s old photographs. Now, I just need to organize them.

 There were several of these small, two images to a print, photographs. The images were probably 2×2 making the whole print about 4×2. Apart, the images are just pictures, but together they seem much more interesting. I believe all of the following are from the same day.

My grandfather and a flag:

my Grandmother and her best friend a little off-center:

and my favorite:


Brendan joined the party on January 2, 2004. He's cool now.

Jessica has never been cool. She is OK with that.

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