Monday, March 13, 2017

Mr. Leprechaun's New House

Every year I write about our annual St. Patrick's Day celebration.  In light of my new found knowledge of being 20% Irish-British, this was even more special.  This year we celebrated a few days early because of scheduling conflicts.  Even with all the planning, our granddaughter Melissa couldn't come.  She is sixteen years old and has a job at a mom and pop type drive-in.  Surprisingly they opened in February.  Looking out the window today at the snow makes me wonder if the drive-in owners made the same mistake as all the migratory birds.  Our early tease of warm weather did not continue, and summer temperatures are not in the immediate future.

I usually report about our big meal.  I won't do that this year because it is always the same except this year I made three racks of ribs and four corned beef briskets.  As amazing as it seems, we were left with not that many leftovers.  After everyone took home a little care package, very little remained.  That's a good thing.

What I do want to write about is our youngest grandson's search for the elusive leprechaun.  If you follow this blog, you will know about his love for leprechaun's.  Every year before we eat, we have to look for the leprechaun.  Ewan's theory is that Mr. Leprechaun, which we call Shamus, has to return to Wisconsin from his winter home in the south by St. Patrick's Day.

Our family arrived a little before noon all decked out in their Irish finery.  Ewan was anxious to get started, so before everyone had their coats off, he was leading the parade to the woods.  When we arrived, we noticed a disaster had happened.  A week earlier we had a lot of wind, and a big tree had fallen on the leprechaun's house.

Upon arriving at the scene, we noticed the door of the house was open.  Inside was a note written by Shamus Leprechaun.  It was rolled tightly and tied with green yarn.  It was a little hard to copy, but this is what it said.

After looking at the compass and analyzing the clue, Jack (our second youngest grandchild) and Ewan ran to the spot.  There, lo and behold, was another clue.

The clues took us to the food break down bin (compost bin),

clue #3 to the cooking place (fire pit),

clue #4 to the rabbit's hiding place like br'er rabbit (brush pile),

clue #5 following a deer trail to a house on a pole (birdhouse),

clue #6 across a big gravel path (driveway) to a prickly bush.  The last clue brought them to the new leprechaun house.  There was a basket of candy with this final note.

So much excitement at the sight of the new house.  Ewan dove through the all the branches and sticks used to camouflage the house from view.  Jack ran around and grabbed the basket of treats.  I hate to see them grow up and lose the wonder of it all.

This is Shamus Leprechaun's new house.  There is a story behind this house.  We knew we wanted to have Mr. Leprechaun move.  My husband was going to build a new house from scratch, but one day we went to the Restore Store.  They had a stack of dog houses in cartons ready to assemble.  The houses only cost $10, but all the writing and instructions were in Chinese.  We thought it would be a good base.  We brought it home and remodeled it a little.  Mike cut windows and put in plexiglass.  He sided it with wood lath and put chinking (like we have in our log house) between the boards.  He made hinged doors to cover the doghouse opening.

The beginning of the remodeling process.

I made a bed in a small orange crate.

We added a few clothing items.

 I even made coat hangers out of paper clips.

The inside of the house.  If I were ten inches tall, I could move right in.

We brought all the furnishings inside, but I will have to set it up again when the kids come back out for a visit.  I can probably leave it set up when the weather improves, but for now I have to hope they don't just "drop in" to see us.  Ewan would be very sad to see this house abandoned.  I don't know how we will top it for next year although we realize the days of "believing" are numbered.  Great memories for us as well as the kids.