The English language is a rich and wonderful thing. Those of us who have it as our mother tongue hardly know how lucky we are. The Italians, for instance, have to use the same word for a niece, a nephew or a grandchild. I mean, really?
There’s just one area of English where it seems to me we’re a bit lacking and that is blessings. Is it because we don’t like fuss? My old Mum, who was a devout Christian soul, always looked slightly uncomfortable when my husband said Grace before dinner. I could see her thinking, ‘Yes, yes, I’m sure we’re all grateful for the food on our plate but the gravy’s growing cold.’
At 1 am this morning my newest grandson was born – a real bonus for me because it’s eight years since we had a baby in the family and I had thought my head count of grandchildren was complete. Anyway, stumped for an English blessing, I knew exactly where to turn: to my daughter-in-law’s Irish heritage. The Irish have a blessing for every occasion. Shearing a sheep, lighting a fire, milking a cow, a cut, a sprain, a new moon and, yes, a new baby.
Here are but two.
A newborn babe brings light to the house, warmth to the hearth and joy to the soul, for wealth is family, and family is wealth.
God grant you many years to live, for sure he must be knowing, the Earth has angels all too few, while Heaven is overflowing.
So welcome, Hamish (a nod to the Scots thread in his ancestry). There will be no work done in this house today. Your granny is way too excited.