My ancestral home, Ireland.. Éire if you want to get technical.

The interesting things I learned this weekend researching it with Kasey for her school project..

“There are not only no snakes in Ireland, but no native turtles. There are frogs, one salamander, called a newt, and one lizard that bears its young alive.”

After she read that aloud, Kasey and I had the most interesting conversation….

Mom… ???

Yes Kasey..

There’s only one salamander in Ireland?

Yes, Kasey.


Well, after the ice age, any other species that might have been there were gone from the cold. And because Ireland is an island they really cant relocate themselves from other places…so… just the one salamander!

Where does it live?

Probably under rocks.. there are a lot of rocks in Ireland.

But what if someone kills him? His name is Newt!

If you could have seen my face. I laughed, I cried, I peed.

Charlie comes in….

Kasey re-reads it. Still looking at me like Newt just popped out of my forehead.

She wonders why I am sitting down, nearly passed out from laughing till I was breathless.

She figures it out. Smiles…

All Charlie hears is “no” and what he thought was “dogs”.

There are no dogs in Ireland? What?

Because I am a terrible mother and I like to prey on my children’s innocence, I say “ Just three…and they all live with Newt”

Kasey chimes in “Under his rock.”

And then we went to school…..


Gosh… I hope Charlie doesn’t tell his teacher about the one salamander in Ireland named Newt who lives under a rock with his three dogs…



I would really love to include a picture of the 2 salamanders TJ used to have when he was in 5th grade…but the only pictures that were ever taken were of them playing leap frog.

But they really weren’t playing leap frog. I just told everyone they were playing leap frog. Because the only thing two boy salamanders do like that together is leap frog.