Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Limerick Federation ICA Notes Week ending May 3rd

Basketmakingat An Grianán by Ronan Russell of Newgrange Willow Design


On Tuesday April 22nd

enjoyed a wonderful cultural experience.

Our first stop was Newbridge Silverwear and would you believe it we met KITT the talking car. With

lunch shopping and a visit to the museum over we were on the road again to Farmleigh House. Here

we had a guided tour of the main rooms once used by the Guinness Family and now used by The

State when entertaining ‘guests of the nation’. However still wondering what seven star bedrooms

looked like!

Arriving at An Grianán in time for evening lunch and that wonderful An Grianán welcome we quickly

settled in and we were treated to a surprise demonstration of Willow Work by Ronan Russell and

his partner Elaine. Ronan who is a basket maker and willow designer set up his own company –

Newgrange Willow Designs – and grows willow for his beautiful willow products.

Elaine does sculpture work, making small items such as Love Knots right up to large animals some of

which are on display in Moynalty , winner of The Tidy Towns.

On Wednesday everyone was up early for breakfast and we set out for the visit to The North.

Our first stop was the delightful Ballyrobert Cottage and Gardens. Do you know that before you

enter the gardens you must stop at the gate and salute the Fairy Tree? The Fairies are part of the

folklore here and this is where Maurice began his guided tour and told us the history of this unique

Ulster Cottage Garden which was developed from a traditional small farm. His wife Joy met us at the

house where we enjoyed tea and scones. We left with a bus full ofr plants and great plans for our

own gardens.

We travelled on to Belfast City for shopping in Victoria Square and a guided tour of Belfast City Hall.

We were met on arrival by our guide Sindy who led us up the carpeted stairway on a most

interesting tour of the building. All the carpets here were made in Galway and a feature of the

Council Meeting Rooms is the beautifully carved Irish Oak. Anne donned the hand made councillors

robe and we sat for a while taking photos in that historic building.

On the third day our bags were packed and in brilliant spring sunshine we set off on our journey

home. Drogheda was our first stop in search of the last minute bargains. We took a detour into The

Wicklow Hills with a short stop in Glendalough and Powerscourt.

A special word of thanks to the organiser Anne Rowlands and our driver Tadgh for a safe trip.

 thirty six ICA ladies from many parts of Limerick travelled to An Grianán and

Friday, February 7, 2014

Limerick Federation ICA Notes Week ending Feb 8th

Limerick Federation ICA Spring Meeting takes place on Tue. Feb. 25th at 8pm in The Woodlands House Hotel, Adare. All Guilds are invited to attend this meeting and give their support to the Federation 70th Celebration. A choir is being organised for the Ecumenical Service in The Methodist Church, Adare. If you are interested please get in contact with Maura Walsh, Cappamore, 087 9153729. Anne Gabbett takes charge of catering so if you wish to assist you can contact Anne at 087 6411656
The annual collection of toiletries etc. for ADAPT House will take place at The Federation Meeting and your support is very much appreciated.
Our Timire Maura is having a Trath Na gCeist competition so you can all brush up on your cúpla focail.
Marmalade makers will have the opportunity to test their skills using their favourite recipe with a competition for a pot of homemade marmalade.  A little bit of history on marmalade tells us that Marmelada was the Portuguese name for sweet quince paste that was imported as a luxury to Britain from the late Middle Ages onwards. It was very expensive and only used by royalty and the well heeled. As it was in great demand Tudor cooks invented a more affordable version by boiling up the cheaper imports of lemons and bitter Seville oranges into thick, solid conserves they called “marmalades. These were cut into slices and eaten as sweets. Later more water was added and some of the first references to marmalade used as a jam are found in Scotland.
Anne Rowlands has finalised details for a short visit to An Grianán from April 22nd to 24th 2014
Tue. 22nd Depart Crescent Shopping Centre Visit Farmleigh House for a tour of house and arrive in An Grianán in time for evening dinner
Wed 23rd Depart An Grianán after Breakfast  on a visit to Ballyrobert Cottage and Gardens. Here you will have a tour followed by tea/coffee and scones. 2.30pm Tour of Belfast City Hall which takes approx. 45mins. Shopping Time in Victoria Square and return to An Grianán for evening dinner.
Thurs. 24th Depart An Grianán after Breakfast for tour of Glendalough and Powerscourt and arrive back in Limerick in afternoon.
The cost is €130 for two nights B&B plus Dinner and €50 approx for Bus plus 5sterling entry to Ballyrobert Cottage. All those interested in travelling should contact Anne at 087 6968690 and deposit must be paid at Spring Federation Meeting.
Joan Hayes, Federation Treasurer also asks guilds who have collected the euro per member to support An Grianán to bring along the money to Federation Meeting.
Joan Hayes from Crecora Guild shares this nice recipe for Lemon Cheese Cake with us.
125grms(4ozs) butter
250grms digestive biscuits(approx. half a packet)
300grms Philadelphia Cheese(1carton)
227ml cream(1carton)
227ml natural yoghurt(1carton)
1egg separated
1packet lemon jelly
Rind and juice of 1large lemon
Crush the biscuits to crumbs and melt the butter. Combine both and press into loose bottom tin. Melt the jelly in about 2 tablespoons of water over heat. Beat the egg white to soft peaks, whip the cream. To the egg white and cream add the egg yolk, cream cheese, yoghurt, juice and lemon rind and beat until smooth.Pour over biscuit base and leave to set.
(Glutten free biscuits can also be used very successfully in this recipe.)
Feb5th Limerick Lace class Millinnium Centre Raheen
Feb25th Federation Meeting Woodlands
March1st National Spring Conference in An Grianán  

Thursday, January 16, 2014

BANTRACHT NA TUAITHE Limerick Federation ICA Notes Week ending Jan 18th


Ladies this is your opportunity to win one of two family tickets (2adults and 4 children under the

age of 16) to the Holiday World Show taking place in the RDS Simmonscourt in Dublin from Friday


 to Sunday 26th

admin@ica.ie – only one name per email. Closing date Monday Jan.20th

on Monday afternoon and tickets will be posted on same day.


If you are thinking of sunny days and planning your holidays then you may be interested in a trip to

The Holliday World Show 2014. All ICA Members can avail of a very special discount for the Show.

Exhibitors at the show are grouped in ten different segments, including home holidays, Europe

and the Mediterranean, The Americas, luxurious cruise liners, caravans and motor homes and

much more. You will get professional advice on the best value holidays to suit you or just enjoy an

entertaining day out. To avail of this special offer, groups must pre-book with Maria on (01)2957417

or by email at maria@bizex.ie before Friday Jan17th giving approx. numbers and arrival time. Please

quote “ICA Offer” at time of booking.


January is the month when Seville oranges appear in the shops so why not try making your own

marmalade and you will be delighted with the results. This recipe will help you get started.


8 seville oranges

3 sweet oranges

2 lemons 5 litres(9pt) water

4and you will be delighted with the results. This recipe will help you get started.


8 seville oranges

3 sweet oranges

2 lemons 5 litres(9pt) water

4kg (8lb) of preserving sugar


 of January. If you wish to enter send your name, address, guild and Federation to

Halve fruit, extract juice and pips. If pith is thick remove some. Shred peel to thickness required

Put peel, juice and water into pan. Tie pips in a muslin bag, and place in pan and bring to the boil,

then simmer gently for about 2hours, until peel is tender.

Squeeze bag of pips to release any liquid, remove.

Stir warmed sugar in over gentle heat until sugar is dissolved.

Boil rapidly until marmalade is at setting point.

Leave 1 hour to stand, and stir.

Turn into warm, dry jars, seal and label.

Makes 4 -6kg (9 -12lb)

Good luck with the draw and happy marmalade making


Inter Federation Cup for Art – Photography

Title- “The Town I love so Well”

Two categories – Black and white and colour

Photographs entered must have been taken by the entrant.

Please send entry marked “Photography” to ICA Central Office, 58 Merrion Road, Ballsbridge, Dublin

4 Please include your name, address, tel. no. email address, Guild and Federation on a separate

sheet of paper also stamped self addressed envelope for return. Entry fee €5 and make cheques

payable to ICA contests. Closing Date Friday Jan 17, 2014

Great Irish Bake Off

Open to over 16yrs/non professionals

Apply to www.tv3.ie

Closing Date Fri. Jan. 17th


Friday, October 25, 2013

Limerick Federation ICA Notes Week ending Oct 26th

“Under bare Ben Bulben’s head
In Drumcliff churchyard Yeats is laid.
An ancestor was rector there
Long years ago, a church stands near,
By the road an ancient cross.
No marble, no conventional phrase;
On limestone quarried near the spot
By his command these words were cut
Cast a cold eye
On life on death
Horseman pass by
It was under the shadow of Ben Bulben that The ICA Ladies gathered  for The Regional Conference on Sat. October 19th. National President, Liz Wall in her opening speech outlined  the progress of the organisation and spoke on the advantages of membership of ICA. She advised members to make use of the Members Benefits and the list is growing all the time. She talked about The Silver Surfers and said there were many wonderful opportunities out there for older people. Continuing on her commitment to Mental Health she welcomed the ladies who took part in the Walk in My Shoes initiative which helped raise funds for St. Patrick’s Mental Health Foundation. In the afternoon there was a speaker from the Dept. of Social Protection who gave a talk on Pensions with particular advice for women to check their pension entitlements. Another highlight of the day was the launch by Liz Wall of The Book Of Home And Family. This is the latest book by ICA members where you will get all sorts of information and tips on running a good home. It will be in the shops soon and will be the ideal Christmas present.  Liz also announced that a third book is underway. This will be a book of crafts and all members are asked to submit suitable material.
Limerick Federation had a real treat in store for the members who attended the Social Night in Kilcornan. With disappearing handkerchiefs and rings and watches The Great Padini had the whole  house in laughter.It reached a climax when the lady had to run from her seat chased by a racoon and ended up with one lady looking for her watch which was eventually found in a loaf of bread. There was a break for a cup of tea and then Mary McKeown took over with her display of upcycling which means taking unwanted items and making something new and useful out of them. Mary could find a hundred uses for anything . She showed many items made from the inside of toilet rolls to ribbon clip holders and very colourful pompoms made from strips of old material. She had slides of old furniture which got a total new look and even earth ships which are garden houses made from old tyres and other waste material. Mary’s contact No. is 087 2287815 if any guilds would like to contact her.
Two stalwart West Limerick ICA Ladies passed away in recent weeks. Delia O Connor  a founder member of Feenagh Guild and Nora Lynch a founder member of Kilmeedy Guild. They were wonderful ICA members and their talents and contribution will always be remembered. Nora excelled at craft work and Delia was a great baker and actress.Sincere sympathy is extended to their families and ICA friends.
A very successful SoS wellness workshop was held inDrombanna  on Sat Oct.12th A large crowd attended and everyone was very pleased with the day. The next workshop will be held in the west Limerick area in the New Year. More details will be available soon.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Limerick Federation ICA Notes Week ending Sept 7th

“When all the others were away at Mass
I was all hers as we peeled potatoes.
They broke the silence, let fall one by one.
I remember her head bent towards my head,
Her breath in mine, our fluent dipping knives –
Never closer the whole rest of our lives.”
                            Seamus Heaney
The poet Seamus Heaney RIP who passed away last week gave us all the opportunity to value the simple things in life. In this lovely poem which he wrote on the death of his mother he remembers that quality time he spent with his mother on an ordinary Sunday peeling potatoes. He was known worldwide so maybe this is a good time for all of us to read and enjoy some of his poems.
Oola Guild are holding “An Old Style Afternoon Tea Party” in The Community Centre, Oola on Sunday September 29th.Teas will be served from 4pm onwards. There will be music and entertainment on the day. Vintage dress is optional, but it is great fun to dress up and get into the swing of things. Tickets are €10 each and can be had from any member of Oola ICA or at The Federation Meeting on Wed. Sept. 25th or by contacting Vera Ryan on 087 2215674.
Mary Canty Sports & Leisure Officer has a walk organised for Saturday Sept.28th at 11am in Aughnish. Meet in the visitors’ car park and refreshments will be available in Foynes after the walk. If you want more details on these walks you can look them up in Geoff Hunt’s book of Limerick Nature Walks. Walking is free so do come out and enjoy the delights of The Shannon Estuary.
A big thank you to all those who helped organise the grocery stall at Milford Hospice Harvest Fair and a very special word of thanks also to all those who donated and collected groceries for the stall. Your generosity is much appreciated.
The ICA Winter conference will be held in The Sligo Park Hotel on October 19th starting at 10.30am. A bus will be organised if there are at least 20 people interested in travelling. The cost of the bus will be €20 approx. Names will be taken at Federation Meeting.
The Bronnaire is being discontinued and members are invited to design a new brooch to replace it. Bring your entries to The ederation Meeting on Sept 25th. For more details on this competition contact Craft Officer Annette Long at 085 7805001. Timire Maura Walsh is running a Comortas for a name for the brooch as Gaeilge. Contact aura at 0879153729 for more details.
Giorgio Armani at Brown & Thomas Dublin would love to invite ICA members for a make up masterclass. This is a complimentary offer for the month of September. To book please call 016171140 (Mon. to Thurs. Appointments.)
Sept. 25th Federation Meeting in Woodlands Hotel, Adare
Sept28th Walk in Aughnish at 11am
Sept 29th Afternoon Tea Party in Oola
October12th Wellness Workshop in Drombanna Daycare Centre

Friday, August 23, 2013

Limerick Federation ICA Notes Week ending August 24th

 Maura Walsh, President of Cappamore Guild Joanne Allen, President of Scarriff Guild Co Clare (the newest Guild in the country) and Marie Hayes, Past President of Limerick Federation enjoying The Launch of Cappamore Show

Limerick County Enterprise Board will present a Networking Event with Margaret E Ward in The Woodlands House Hotel. Date –Sept 4th 2013 Time – 6pm to 9pm Margaret is an award winning journalist and broadcaster and further information can be found at www.lcoeb.ie Cost €10
Start Your Own Business with Padraig Considine (PAS)
Where ? Kilmurry Lodge Hotel
Time – 7pm -9.30pm
Duration 6weeks (Tuesday evenings)
Dates 17th &24th Sept. and 1st 8th 15th &22nd Oct. 2013
Cost €50
Course Outline includes –Business Plan preparation and Tax Registration, Introduction to Bookkeeping and Tax System,  Marketing , Keeping Records and lots more.
Details on www.lcoeb.ie
www.readerswriters.ie is a new website for grass roots writers. Readers Writers is a simple idea. The plan is to offer everyone from the writing enthusiast to the budding journalist a platform to demonstrate their literary talents to the general public and in turn the written media. Readers Writers will provide a platform for individuals to write on their chosen topic, a well informed and authentic piece that reflects their knowledge and interest in that particular area. Contributions are welcome in all areas, be they short stories, prose opinion pieces, articles or reports.
A national newspaper is already on board and they will dip in and out, and take recommended articles.
Some news and ideas from around the country.
Strandhill, Sligo ICA Guild are holding a Gathering Event in Dolly’s Cottage on unday Aug 25th, Heritage Day. An American Wake will be re-enacted and recalled from 4pm – late.
There will be traditional music song and dance, also poetry and prose with an emigrant theme.
Craft Demonstrations include, spinning, basket making, crochet, lace and St Bridget’s Cross making.
You can also have your tea leaves read.
Admission is free. Donations always welcome for upkeep of Cottage.
Beltra Country Markets will display and sell their produce and crafts in the garden alongside the cottage.  Wear your traditional dress and a céad míle  fáilte awaits you.
Virginia Agricultural Show August 21st hosts ICA Guild of The Year Competition. Twelve Guilds from Meath, Cavan and Monaghan are taking part in the Show.
Roscommon Women in Business Network is presenting an evening with Josephine Helly on Tuesday Sept17th at 7.30pm in The Hannons Hotel on The Athlone Road. The event is free of charge.
Josephine  of Bootcamp fame lives in Ardrahan, Co. Galway and is a member of Gort Guild. She teaches a vast array of crafts including dressmaking, knitting, crochet and leatherwork.
If you are on holiday or thinking of a day out any of these event should be of interest.
Limerick Show  August 24th and 25th
Milford Hospice Harvest Fair Sept 1st

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Limerick Federation ICA Notes Week ending August 10th

Limerick ICA Ladies who attended Limerick Week 2013 at An Grianán

While you are relaxing in the summer sun you can be collecting ideas for two “Take Pride competitions coming up in the Autumn.
Irish Pride Bakeries are delighted to have partnered with the ICA and invite you to participate in two “Take Pride” competitions using Irish Pride products.
1.The most unusual and exotic Bread and Butter Pudding  Recipe using any Irish Pride product. This is an individual competition. Please send your entry to Central Office, 58 Merrion Road, Ballsbridge, Dublin 4, before October 31st 2013. There is no entry fee.
2.The “Take Pride Picnic: This competition will be based on the six categories of bread on The Irish Pride website namely : White Breads/Wholemeal nBreads/ Seeded and Grain Breads/Traditional Breads/Buns  and Rolls/Speciality Breads.
Please see the Irish Pride Website www.irishpride.ie for the list of products in each category or call Central Office on 01-6680002 for the list.
Contestants will need to produce a picnic using products from 4 of the 6 categories above. Three products must be savoury and one product must be a desert. Details of Federation winner to be in Central Office before October 31st 2013.
“Take Pride weekend will be held on Saturday Nov. 8th in An Grianán when the finals of both competitions will be held
All Shortlisted Bread and Butter recipe contestants and Take Pride Picnic Federation winners will be invited to compete during the “ Take Pride Weekend”

The ICA Group on their way to An Grianán  for Limerick Week took a little break along the way and stopped off at Newbridge Silverware.
Set up in 1934, to bolster the local economy, Newbridge owes its origins to local visionaries who recruited the services of five cutlery tradesmen from Sheffield to pioneer the craft of Newbridge.
The Newbridge cutlery brand took pride of place in many Irish homes and became a very popular wedding gift . However when Ireland joined The EU in 1970 the company found it hard to compete and in 1973 a prominent local businessman , Mr Dominic Doyle, took over the company and ensured its survival for the next decade. In 1991, William Doyle succeeded his father  and launched the Newbridge Jewellery Collection in 1995. With an emphasis on the informal, the jewellery collection by Newbridge Silverware, quickly caught the imagination of the consumer.
The Newbridge Silverware product range now includes cutlery, jewellery, giftware, kitchenware, cookware, earthenware and leather accessories.
The ICA Ladies were delighted with the opportunity to pick up some gifts and souvenirs
The Silver Restaurant is located onsite at The Newbridge Silverware Visitors Centre and it is open  seven days a week.
Many also visited The Museum of Style Icons which is upstairs in The Visitors Centre. Included in this showcase are the artifacts and garments associated with some of the most legendary Stars of the Silver Screen, Royalty and Entertainment including: Elizabeth Taylor, Audrey Hepburn, Grace Kelly, Princess Diana, The Beatles, Marlyn Monroe, Michael Jackson and many more.
It is well worth a visit if you are planning a day out.

My memory of the first Summer School of ICA which was held on Slievenamon and at that time was named United Irishwomen. Elsie Aherne – O’ Dwyer and myself Agnes White – Barry of Fethard are the only two survivors of that wonderful week held way back in August 1929 and which was instrumental in starting An Grianán as we know it to-day. Other members on that week have since passed on; Olivia Hughes, Phyllis and Helen O’ Connell and Trace Summerville- Large. The dwelling in which we stayed was a tin shed, we slept on sacks of hay, our lighting was by candles. We washes and bathed in a stream which flowed beside the shed. The water was so cold, I can still feel  it. One night, or more like early morning, wild puck goats wandered down the mountain, they ran their long sharp horns along the corrugated galvanised shed. They gave us such a fright. We got up, went out to investigate and found goats everywhere. We did not have handcrafts, Trace Sumerville-Large had dancing lessons. Olivia and myself played in the local orchestra, she played Cello, I played Violin. We certainly did not take musical instruments to Slievenamon as we cycled and brought our food which had to last the week. Our working utensils were few, we made do with what we carried. Going on that wonderful wee was so exciting and the memory will last forever.
                 Agnes White –Barry
Will any trip to An Grianán live up to the adventure these Ladies had?

Sincere sympathy is extended to Maureen Sheehan of Castletroy Guild  on the death of her mother Elizabeth O Sullivan.Suaimhneas Síoraí dá h-anam