Hello, and thanks for the welcomes! :D
Leslie -- I turned towards an Irish path because that is where my family came from. I am a second-generation Irish-American because most of my family lives there except for my parents and a few aunts and uncles. And I'm stuck here in NJ, hah.
I think the best way to go along picking something that suits you is to read, read, read! I am a total book nerd and I've read about a lot of different religions, from Buddhism to pagan Rome! Everyone has very different but very similar ideas and it is interesting to see how they all intertwine.
For Irish book recommendations, I would suggest three of my favorites:
* "The Apple Branch", by Alexei Kondratiev
* "The Mist-Filled Path", by Frank MacEowen
* "The Red-Haired Girl From The Bog", by Patricia Monaghan
For Druidry (well honestly I haven't found too many that I liked!):
* "A Brief History of the Druids", by Peter Ellis
For Asatru/Nordic studies:
* "Norse Mythology", by John Lindow
* "Exploring the Northern Tradition", by Galina Krasskova and Swain Wodening
For general histories (lots more than this, but these are my 'basics'):
* The Táin Bó Cúailnge
* The Lebor Gabála Érenn (or Leabhar Gabhála Éireann)
* The Eddas
I am not sure what you wanted to know about altars, but I keep mine very minimal. Some people have very showy and lovely ones, but I like to be able to pack mine up easily if I have to. I don't have any statues or pentagrams on mine, just a few handmade bowls (salt and water), candles, a branch wand and feathers I collected myself that have some meaning to me.
(¸.·´ (¸.·` Fox ¤
Happily in maintenance!
"Practice becomes firmly grounded when continued for a long time, without interruption and with reverent devotion."