Saint Patrick's Day holds a special place in my heart.
My father is from Dublin, Ireland and March 17th was my late mother's birthday.
In fact, most of my father's relatives still live on the Emerald Isle.
I visited there during my college years and it really is a special place. (Though I'm sure in the many many years since then that it's changed quite a bit.)
While in Ireland one summer, I:
- Studied at Trinity College. But the courses were in Irish History and Literature so I don't recall much. Just ask my husband – I'm a math and science brain for sure!
- Spent loads of time with relatives.
- Hitch-hiked across the small island in 6 hours with another girl in my program (yes, it's pretty safe in Ireland)
- Enjoyed all the funny names for things like “crisps” for potato chips
- Learned that fresh eggs can be stored at room temperature for a long time (they have eggs stacked on the floor in the grocery store)
- Walked into a pub on the Western side where everyone was speaking Gaelic, Ireland's native language.
The story behind St. Patrick's Day is inspiring. In a nutshell:
- Patrick was from Britain, born near the end of the fourth century.
- When he was sixteen, he was kidnapped by Irish raiders and forced to tend sheep in Ireland.
- His trials led him to seek God. One day he thought he heard God telling him to flee his captors, so he did.
- He was caught again and put into slavery, but again escaped and returned to Britain.
- He had another “vision” from God calling him back to Ireland.
- There, he studied with priests, became a priest and a deacon, and eventually Bishop of Ireland.
- “Patrick evangelized, taught literacy, equipped men and women for ministry, and provided leadership for new churches throughout the Emerald Isle.”
I don't know how all of the alcohol and revelry started, but I like to celebrate on some level.
I'd love to do the whole naturally corned beef and all that, but frankly that's a little ambitious right now.
Some simple Saint Patrick's Day ideas you might try:
1. This morning I made my hubby and son a fruit and protein shake that I flavored with mint and added a bit of parsley to to color it. Kind of like a healthy shamrock shake. Not quite tasty enough to post, but they enjoyed it!
2. One year we used potato stamps and stamped green shamrock shapes all over paper bags which I then taped together into a table runner :-).
3. How about Saint Patrick's Day Fudge? Super simple, yummy and green!
4. How about Saint Patrick's Day Popcorn! It's really my Surprisingly Good Seasoned Popcorn (which is pretty amazing in its own right. So many people tell me that it's really addictive. Not sure about that, but I will say it is pretty hard to stop eating it once you've started!
The seasoning has quite a bit of parsley in it so it's fairly green already. But here it is with a little extra ground parsley mixed in!
Whatever you choose to do, I hope this Saint Patrick's Day finds you healthy and enjoying loved ones around you.
How will you be celebrating Saint Patrick's Day?
Top Photo Source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/doyland/4428362687/