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Tuesday 25 February 2014

The Death of St. Patrick

Saint Patrick is the patron saint and national apostle of Ireland. He is credited with bringing christianity to Ireland.

BUT 'Why is the Shamrock the National Flower of Ireland ?' St. Patrick used the shamrock to explain the Holy Trinity to pagans.

There are several accounts of Saint Patrick's death. One says that Patrick died at Saul, Downpatrick, Ireland, on March 17, 460 A.D. Another account says that St. Patrick died at Glastonbury, England and was buried there. The Chapel of St. Patrick still exists as part of Glastonbury Abbey.
The alleged burial place of St. Patrick at Down Cathedral Co. Down. Photo by Shiela O'Connor

The Annals of Ulster say:
"Patrick, arch-apostle, or archbishop and apostle of the Irish, rested on the 16th of the Kalends of April in the 120th year of his age, in the 60th year after he had come to Ireland to baptize the Irish."

After his death there was the legendary "Battle for the Body of St. Patrick" between the Ui Neill Kings of Tara, the Oirghialla and the Ulta (Ulaid) of Ulster.

Tuesday 11 February 2014

"Cremation jewellery is a novel way of remembering your pet"

Product review from Pete the Vet : looking after your pet’s remains after their death in a novel way – “cremation jewellery”
We all dread that day when we finally need to say goodbye to our pets. It’s always a difficult time, and on top of the emotional distress, there’s that difficult decision to make: what to do with your pet’s remains? It’s a difficult subject, and it probably makes sense to consider it in advance, so that when that moment comes, you have already given serious consideration to the various options. Your decision on the day will then be clearer and easier.

Generally, there are three main choices:

Burial at home - this suits some people, perhaps with smaller pets and with bigger gardens, but for many of us, it’s just not practical

Cremation – with ashes being returned. This option is the most popular for many people with a deep attachment to their pet.

Cremation – with ashes not being returned. Many people feel that they would not know what to do with their pet’s ashes, and they don’t feel the need to have them returned to them. And of course, there’s an extra cost to have pets’ ashes returned, and people may not be in a position to afford to do it.

At the time of your pet’s death, your vet will usually discuss each of these three options with you, and they will help you make the necessary arrangements in place.

If you do decide to ask for your pet’s ashes to be returned to you, what will you do with them? Some people scatter the ashes in a favourite place, while others keep the ashes at home, perhaps with a sample of their pet’s fur and some of their possessions, such as a collar or a toy.

Today’s product review is about a novel alternative for what to do with your pet’s ashes: you can have some of them incorporated into jewellery.  Have you ever heard the Rainbow Bridge story? Well if you haven’t and have suffered pet loss then you should visit you’ll be able to read all about the Rainbow Bridge, as well as learning about Jennifer’s novel way of remembering your pet.

Dubliner Jennifer Muldowney created Rainbow Bridge Memorials when her pet dog of 16 years, Roxy died in 2009. A friend shared the story of Rainbow Bridge with Jennifer and it helped her to heal and continues to inspire her collection of pet memorials.

Jennifer’s collection includes a number of colourful jewellery pieces, from pendants to charms made from the cremated ashes of pets fused with glass. The fusion of ash with the glass creates a cloud like effect, ensuring that each piece is unique and individual to you and your pet. You can add different colours or charms to make it even more personal: just ask Jennifer and she’ll explain how this can be done.

When you make a purchase on the website – you are sent a Rainbow Pack so that you can send Jennifer and her team a small amount of your pet’s ashes. All postage is included in the price of €160 (or €240 for 9ct gold) and each order is handmade separately.

Cremation Jewellery isn't for everyone, but if you are looking for a different way to remember your pet, it’s certainly worth considering.

So what are we at?!

So what do we do here at Farewell? Well while we started off in the funeral planning business- it didnt quite work out - Irish people were not really open to the idea of planning their own funeral but it brought me on a journey to where I am today which is still evolving every week!

Currently I write books, articles and reviews of funeral planning, products, the industry, new businesses etc. I also speak on the radio or in documentaries about the same. While I am writing book number 2 at the moment my new range of memorial keepsake jewellery is flying out!

It started waaay back when I was in the States and my granny passed away. I didn't make it home for the funeral but she had given me (as most Irish grandmothers did!) a miraculous medal to keep me 'wholesome and pure' and while that might not have worked I did wear it to feel close to her after she passed. Soon however I was getting the typically snide remarks of "the virgin Mary" and "ooo aren't you a holy Joe" and it became uncomfortable because I would have to tell them that either yes I was or that they were an a** because my granny had died (usually the latter).

Then two years later we had to put our dog of 16 years down because she was suffering with strokes. This devastated us. We got her cremated and have her ashes in a box on our mantelpiece, an act most families of cremated loved one's do. But with these two experiences, I got thinking about how I could keep a piece of a loved one with me, wherever I went in the world (I intended to travel alot).

Farewell Celtic Ashes and Rainbow Bridge Memorials were born, looking after the Humans and Pets respectively. It only takes a teaspoon of some ashes to create a beautiful piece of memorial jewellery that you can keep with/on you forever.

So that is what I am currently up to at Farewell HQ! ;-)