Happy Rabbie Burns Nicht


What day of the year combines haggis, whisky and poetry with lots of fun and laughter? Burns Night of course! There is no better time of the year to toast the bard and glorious Scotland and WeeBox has all you need to host the perfect Burns Supper, wherever you are in the world!

This month, WeeBox was lucky enough to collaborate with the only Centre for Robert Burns Studies in the world (!) to work with their experts to bring you January’s WeeBox!  The Centre was established at the University of Glasgow over10 years ago and it’s mission is the development of research, scholarship and teaching in the area of Robert Burns, editing his work for the 21st century.  Take a peek at our very special ‘unboxing’ video by Dr. Pauline MacKay on our social channels, who expertly brings your WeeBox to life!

The first Burns supper was held in July 1801 when nine of Burns’ close friends got together to mark the fifth anniversary of their friend’s death. Taking place at Burns Cottage in Alloway, the night included haggis, of course, performances of Burns’ work and a speech in honour of the great Bard (now known as the Immortal Memory). The night was such a resounding success they decided to hold it again (this time in honour of Rabbie’s birthday), beginning the tradition we still enjoy to this day.

‘The Burns Supper, a concise history’ book is hot off the press and we have it exclusively for you before anyone else! Clark McGinn is also a PhD graduate of the University and this book comes highly recommended.  Spanning the history of the phenomenon, from the year of its creation in 1801 to the present day, this book offers you everything you need to know about the Burns Supper, and the poet for whom it is held every year. From the origins of the custom to its modern day interpretations, from the rituals and traditions to the fun and fellowship, this first full-length study of the unique annual celebration of Scotland’s national poet answers every question you can think of, along with every one you can’t.

The perfect Burns Supper is all about setting the scene.  So, lay your Scottish table with these bonnie Burns napkins and hang your stunning stained glass window art of the man himself – gie the Bard pride a‘ place!  

Now to the feast – traditional haggis, neeps and tatties are a must! But as we cannae send you the real haggis, enjoy Mackie’s haggis and black pepper crisps! Try to be believed, perfectly ‘paired’ with Talikser (the single malt from the Isle of Skye) with its smokiness – not for the faint of hearts! The Mackie’s Crisps story goes back many years… to when the Taylor family began farming in Perthshire in 1927, to them teaming up with Mackie’s of Scotland in 2009, and beyond.

   Selkirk Grace

Some hae meat and canna eat, 

   And some wad eat that want it; 

But we hae meat, and we can eat, 

   Sae let the Lord be thankit.

Finally, don yer best tartan or kilt and to add a wee special touch with this exclusive Hamilton & Young Edinburgh jeweller’s necklace, bearing the Bard’s famous ‘Auld Lang Syne’ for the sing-song and remember to gie it laldie!

“Happy Rabbie Burns Nicht 2019” from all at WeeBox HQ! 


Scotland’s Greatest Celebration

Happy Birthday to our national Scottish Bard, Robert Burns!

Scotland and the world celebrate his birthday on the 25th January with whisky, haggis, poetry and song.  This month, WeeBox HQ was honoured to collaborate with the Centre for Robert Burns Studies at the University of Glasgow to bring you a very special Burns WeeBox.  And we have a real treat for you! Here is Dr. Pauline Mackay, Lecturer in Robert Burns Studies, unboxing your Burns WeeBox giving a magical insight into the man, the gifts and how to salute his birthday like a real Scot! Enjoy! #CheerstoRabbie 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿🥃

 

WeeBox in Burns Country

With Burns Night on the way and preparations taking place around the world, WeeBox decided to take a nostalgic trip to Burns Country – and walk in the footsteps of the Bard!

On the 25th January 1759 Robert Burns was born in a small cottage in Alloway, Scotland. He would become Scotland’s favourite son and national Bard – his legacy has held strong over the centuries and his memory will be celebrated this month.

From Los Angeles to Singapore and from Canada to Hong Kong – this year, WeeBox is helping Scots-at-heart across the globe celebrate Burns Night …. and we’ve channelled inspiration from our visit to his birthplace, Alloway.

The most picturesque village and made famous by Burns, Alloway is pristine, thick with history and a story (or ten!) to tell. Every inch seemed to nod to the Bard – from the sign posts, street plant pots and street names such as ‘Shanter Way’. We followed in the footsteps of the adventures of Tam o’Shanter, had afternoon tea at the Brig o’Doon Hotel and popped in to ‘Poet’s Corner’ coffee shop for a blether and a natter.

When WeeBox visited, the village was preparing for a host of unique events on and around the 25th January. One which captured our imagination was an exclusive Burns Supper in Burns Cottage where it all began! Of course now sold out, this exclusive fundraising event will be held by The Friends of Robert Burns Birthplace Museum. What an unforgettable night it promises to be with piper, toasts, recitations, music and speeches, in the most remarkably preserved thatched cottage. WeeBox will keep you posted on tickets for next year!

No visit to Scotland would be complete without a trip to Burns Country – its beauty, history and sense of mischief made WeeBox proud, surprised us and of course, gave us a wee grin!

Burns Supper 2017

Burns Night the WeeBox Way

Haggis, whisky, poetry and pride! Burns Night, celebrated on and around the 25th January to mark the Bard’s birthday, is recognised around the globe by Scots and Scots-at-heart. Centred on auld traditions, here’s our WeeBox guide to Scotland’s famous annual shindig with tips on how to use your January WeeBox curated especially for the occasion.

January Burns WeeBox

Who was Robert Burns?

One of Scotland’s most iconic literary figures, Robert Burns was born in 1759 to a farming family in the small town of Alloway. He gained a reputation for his pioneering views on religion, politics and class-inequalities. Interestingly he lived a fairly impoverished life and his work only really gained fame after his death. We’re sure he would be stunned to know his words, ‘Auld Lang Syne’ were sung around the globe every Hogmanay!

How to Celebrate Burns Night

A night of friends, family and steeped in tradition, your Burns Supper will be a night to remember with WeeBox! Don your Brave ‘Scottish Alphabet’ apron to get in the spirit and get ready for a night of poetry, feast and fun.

Setting your Burns Supper table is an important part of creating the right atmosphere – be sure to have tartan napkins, thistles and red roses on display and lots of crystal whisky glasses! We have included a beautiful ‘Auld Lang Syne’ tea towel straight from the Burns Birthplace Museum in Alloway for you to display as part of setting the scene.

Poetry and Scottish charm aside, Burns Night wouldn’t be the gathering it is without the gastronomic delights that are celebrated throughout the evening. And of course, before the feast is served, its traditional to recite the Selkirk Grace:

Some have meat and cannot eat,
Some cannot eat that want it;
But we have meat, and we can eat,
Sae let the Lord be thankit

Satisfying Scotch broth, or Scottish soup, typically starts off the supper, with crusty bread and lashings of butter. Alternatively, cock-a-leekie, or ‘Scotland’s national soup’ is another delicious choice.

The best part of Burns revolves around the spectacle of the haggis. This ‘great chieftain o the puddin race’ is revered and celebrated like no other dish. For the grand entrance, get dressed in your best tartan, and pipe in the haggis on a silver platter! The haggis must of course be addressed with a riveting rendition of Burns’ poem ‘Address to the Haggis’. Remember to have your knife poised at the ready, and on cue (His knife see Rustic-labour dight), cut the haggis along its length, making sure to spill out some of the tasty gore within (trenching its gushing entrails). The address must finish with a raucous whisky toast ‘To the Haggis’!

But where do you find haggis? In the majestic Highlands? Roaming the lochs? Or ….. at a Scottish butcher?! If you’re not lucky enough to live near a traditional Scottish butcher, you can lay your hands on traditional haggis online. It can be baked or boiled, and there are innumerate versions, from vegetarian to venison. One brand WeeBox can vouch for is Stahly Scotch Haggis and the good news is that they have distributors in North America for example, who you can order from direct. Take a keek at www.haggis.com for more information and a free downloadable haggis recipe book in response to the age old question ‘what do you do with it!?’ We are keen to build up a knowledge of haggis around the world, so do let us know where you get yours in the comments below.

The haggis should be served with neeps and tatties: a famous and glorious union. This fluffy serving of mashed potatoes and mashed turnips can also be served with a deliciously rich, whisky sauce and of course, a dram.

Finally, pudding is typically Scottish cranachan, a delicious fusion of whipped cream, toasted oats, honey and raspberries soaked in a dash (or more!) of whisky. Whisky or a robust red wine make a good accompaniment to your Burns Supper.

Other recitals on the evening include a speech commemorating Burns and a toast to the great man, known as the ‘Immortal Memory’. The ‘Address to the Lassies’ and of course ‘The Reply from the Lassies’ are a highlight and normally written especially for the evening. Each Burns Supper is individual, so have fun, add in other elements for your guests – a quiz, a treasure hunt – anything goes, we don’t think the Bard would mind!

Dress code for a Burns Supper can be a nod to tartan or the full traditional kilt outfit. Often a tartan scarf wrapped like a sash is effective but if you do want to get fully kilted up, our WeeBox friends at MacGregor & MacDuff www.macgregorandmacduff.co.uk can help! Just tell them WeeBox sent you….

The soundtrack to your evening could be anything from bagpipes to more modern Scottish music. Nevertheless, a rousing chorus of ‘Auld Lang Syne’ at the end of the night is a must.

And when the night is over, WeeBox has even thought of your morning after. Beat the dreaded hangover with the classic Scottish hangover cure and Scotland’s iconic national drink, Irn Bru. And what about a wee slice of toast and marmalade? Thanks to our friends at Pipsqueak Preserves, we bring you this delicious home-made marmalade from Glasgow.

So, from WeeBox HQ in Scotland, we wish you a wonderful Burns Night 2017! Slainte!

WeeBox in the Big Apple

What better place to launch WeeBox than at the historic 260th St Andrew’s Banquet in New York City, USA!

We are honoured to be attending the event hosted by journalist and broadcaster Kirsty Wark and are looking forward to seeing our beautiful purple WeeBox’s as table gifts for guests.  One lucky bidder will also win a 12 month subscription to WeeBox – receiving inspiring Scottish discoveries delivered straight to their door for the whole of 2017!

The Scottish expat community here in the US is vibrant and very proud of their Scottish heritage.  For over 250 years the St Andrew’s Society of the State of New York and its distinguished membership has provided charitable relief, academic sponsorship, community and identity to the natives of Scotland and their descendants. As one of the oldest not-for-profit organizations in the country, the St. Andrew’s Society celebrates Scottish heritage and tradition through fund-raising and other social events, fostering the good will, understanding and communication between the people of New York and the people and leadership of Scotland. 

So, as the song goes ….. if WeeBox can make it here …. we can make it anywhere! Thank you New York City from your friends at WeeBox.

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