Monday, February 27, 2012

An Irish Breakfast

One Easter we flew to Ireland. We arrived in Dublin on a rainy morning, and our first meal at the hotel was a traditional Irish breakfast: black pudding, fried ham, grilled tomatoes, sunny side up eggs, soda bread, and tea.
After we ventured into the countryside, scones and oatmeal began to appear on the menu. The combination created a filling breakfast, and for once I didn't think about food as I traipsed through valleys and rolling hills. The land was a thousand shades of green--far brighter than Tennessee--
and the air was spiced with peat . . . yet it reminded me of home.
To this day, when I am lonesome for Ireland, I make oatmeal and scones.

This morning, while I listened to music by The Frames, I prepared a Tennessee version of an Irish breakfast. I laced the oatmeal with granola and heavy cream.
Then I "dressed" a scone with whiskey jam.

The first time I saw Rattlebridge, I thought of Ireland. True, the farm is a world away, and very different from the Emerald Isle. The day we saw Rattlebridge, I was entranced by the sky--a wash of blue, clouds like spilled cream. I remember thinking that those clouds might eventually wing their way to Ireland. When you love a place, it becomes a part of you. One day you might walk on a Tennessee farm, and your thoughts are like those clouds, rushing to the places you love while your feet never leave the ground.

Today, renovation began at the farm. Past remodelings have been filled with angst and second guessing, but Will and I feel excited. While I ate my Irish-Tennessee breakfast, I made notes.
I have inherited a cottage garden, wild turkeys, a pond full of bull frogs, a small cemetery,
and fields of daffodils.
I'm hoping for many Irish breakfasts and blessings.


  1. Hi Michael Lee! Oh, this is so loverly! I like your new blog look too.
    Hope you're doing well and you've made me hungry. :)
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia ;)

  2. I wish you nothing but smooth sailings with your renovations. And blessings in abundance as you begin your new life at the farm. Whenever I read your posts, I always leave with a sense of feeling good - whether it is your pictures or your words, or both. You have a gift, my friend. Beautiful table, as always. And I agree, there is nothing like Ireland or an Irish breakfast. Hugs, Barb

  3. Lovely pictures and a beautiful post. I was born in Tennessee. My Dad raised cattle while we were there. I wish you well with the renovations.

  4. Beautiful tablescape Michael Lee. We enjoy what's known as a full "English" breakfast here all the time in Australia. Very similar to an Irish breakfast. It's usually saved for a Sunday morning so we have time to enjoy it.

    Anne @ Domesblissity xx

  5. Sounds wonderful..Ireland..I have long wanted to go and have it on my list! How wonderful that your new place reminds you of there. I know whatever you choose to do with your home it will be beautiful. Your table is so pretty and the scones look delicious!
    Miss Bloomers

  6. Rattlebridge Farm looks and sounds like paradise. I know your are going to enjoy this new adventure. Nothing better than a bowl of oatmeal to start one's day. I like mine topped with berries! ~ sarah

  7. Delightful!

    I went to Ireland many years ago, and it truly is a magical place....just like your farm, I am certain.

    Enjoy all your wonderful breakfasts!

  8. Lovely to 'meet' you Michael Lee. I am so excited to have found you!

    I love everything about your blog and am so looking forward to spending lots of time here. It is such a 'feel-good' place. Great 'happy therapy' for the soul...

    Wishing you a beautiful day,
    Linda at Beautiful Ideas

  9. hi Michael Lee, I am seriously wishing for a trip back to Ireland or England right now. I have fond memories of traveling there with kids and hubby, sampling the scones at every opportunity and choosing the best and the worst. I never knew that Bailey's could be an ingredient! Sounds delicious! Linda

  10. Beautiful view! Looking forward to seeing what you do, and don't forget - pictures. :D I will have a scone, but the whiskey jam does not sound to good.

  11. Such a lovely post - you make me wish I could return to the UK immediately.

    PS - we're moving to TN!!

  12. Beautiful! I can't wait to see spring and summer pics of the garden!

  13. Can't wait to see Rattlebridge Farm's renovation as it progresses. What a lovely farm it is. Being in Tennessee myself I can certainly relate to your comparison of Tennessee and Ireland. I could picture it in my mind as I was reading your post.

    Blessings to you and Rattlebridge Farm.

    Mary L

  14. My wishes are the same :) Lovely breakfast and I can't wait to see the renovations, and also the pond, cottage garden and cemetery!

  15. The farm looks grreat. Would you believe it could snow here tomorrow?

  16. I love Tennessee and I love the view you shared of your property. It looks very calming and peaceful! I wish you the best with the renovations ~ I can only imagine how wonderful it will be when you are finished.

    Thanks for sharing your breakfast with us as well as your thoughts ~ I love to read what you write.


  17. You make oatmeal look delicious! I'm looking forward to hearing about your renovations and seeing all the pieces of RBF! Wishing you many Irish breakfasts and blessings :)

  18. Hi Michael Lee, my hubby & I have only been to Europe once & that was to Ireland...our dream vacation! We had the best scones at Cabra Castle. Your berry scones look fabulous & with Bailey's Irish Cream, how can one go wrong??!!

  19. This is a very green week for you!
    Tues, I had the Connollys, Donnellys and Dolans for a luncheon, my bil is Irish born and one of 13! Today I had lunch with a fellow blogger, The Tablescaper, at The Irish Coffee Pub a lovely restaurant here on LI. The scones were dry, but the conversation was anything but!
    My sis and bil are off to TN for St . Patrick's Day. My niece is a doc at St. Jude's. Are you near there?
    I can't wait to see the new farm, what a wonderful adventure!

  20. Breakfast at Rattlebridge Farm looks inviting. Love oatmeal for breakfast. Beautiful setting!