Get Lucky! The Countdown to St. Pat’s

Ironically, the morning I sat down to write this, I had a very hard time concentrating because of our impending “blizzard.” So, I scratched the idea of counting down to St. Patrick’s Day and decided to share some snow ideas instead.

Now that the 17th is almost here, I feel like I have to write this post because I took the pictures, and had the ideas, and by golly, it’s going to get DONE.

Kind of kills the fun, eh?

Ireland deserves more. Theretofore, I have bolstered myself with a medium-sized ice cream sundae, and am ready to share some ways that we get our Irish on for this festival of green. After all, green is Quint’s favorite color and I am like one-eighth Irish (give or take…probably take. I don’t know! Ask ancestry.com), so let’s start with the basics.

Why do we even celebrate St. Patrick’s Day? Well, us Irish (ha ha) recognize March 17th because it is the anniversary of St. Patrick’s death. The cliff notes version is that he brought Christianity to the pagan Irish. Shamrocks are all over the place because he used them to explain the Holy Trinity, and the color green abounds because it has represented the Irish for many years and was used on their flag. Now, I am not a history major, and I certainly can have this wrong, so if anyone wants to enlighten the reader or correct my assertions, by all means…speak now. I am going off of memory and wouldn’t want to lead anyone astray. You know, in case you decide to bring this up during a cocktail party or something whilst consuming your green beverage.

I visited Ireland in the summer of 1993. It is hands-down my favorite place of all time. Tied with the beach. Yes, I know… I am a living, breathing oxymoron. The scenery of Ireland is so green and magical you never want to blink. I visited castles, I played with sheep! The people are so nice and happy and I could listen to them talk all day. I love that place.

Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day? Absolutely. There is so much LIFE there. How could you not celebrate?

In the past our celebration included buying some Guinness and toasting “slainte” (pronounced “slahn-cha” meaning “health”)  to my friends, while wearing green. Aaaand that is hilariously understating what St. Patrick’s Day used to be, but for the sake of this blog there are some other things that are more kid-friendly that I think you might enjoy.

Treats! Is food a love language? “Always food with this one!” you must be thinking. Quite honestly, I am thinking it’s how I express my appreciation for others (one way at least). So here I go again, sharing some treats that can be shushed up for St. Pat’s.

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On the far left you see gold sprinkles, in the middle food color mist, and on the right is the ever-famous food coloring.

Last year, I  spray-painted powdered donuts and put them in a shamrock shape on a white paper plate. While they were still wet, I sprinkled on the gold and drew a stem with a green marker. Voila! It’s a shamrock breakfast. I covered them in saran-wrap and set them out for the boys to find in the morning.

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The glittery shamrocks were also added that night, but this year they are a part of our month-long decor. They were .99 at Walmart! Between Walmart and the dollar store, I found some cute stuff that I am going to stick out with the shamrock donuts on Friday.

The shirts and shamrock necklaces are from Walmart as well. I sort of splurged this year because we usually just wear something green we already have. And Max always borrows a pair of my socks because my mom always sends a care package to us, full of awesome St. Patrick’s Day goodies! She has been such a role model to me in how to make the most of each holiday and celebrate even the little things. When we were younger she’d leave a small trinket or gift on our dresser to find when we woke up the morning of a holiday like Valentine’s Day or Halloween. It was a special tradition that I want to continue because it brings me joy to see my boys overjoyed, as I am sure it brought her joy to bring a smile to our faces.

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What’s funny is that I put this stuff out so there would be a grand reveal in the morning and the boys both said that Lucky the Leprechaun did it. I didn’t even consider the possibility, but I just had to laugh. They miiiiight be a little Elf on the Shelf trained!

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I mean, Lucky is from my trip to Ireland so he could be magical!

In that case, however, Lucky was also very busy preparing other green treats in addition to the donuts. The boys’ milk was green (prepared the night before in clear sippy cups), some vanilla Oreos had been sprayed green and covered in gold sprinkles. One year I served meatloaf with green mashed potatoes; though, last year I made shepherd’s pie (sparing the potatoes the olive hue). I – ahem, LUCKY – also made pistachio pudding that no one liked except for the husband and I, which was just fine by me because I love it.

We haven’t made them yet, but I also have a little craft from Oriental Trading for the boys to put together. My mom used these with her preschoolers and it reinforces St. Patrick’s use of the shamrock in teaching about the Holy Trinity.

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So, am I taking it too far? Buying-in to the consumerism and hype? Probably. My family has a blast with it and so do I. My one-eighth Irish eyes are smiling so that’s all that matters.

In closing, I will leave you with an Irish Blessing that I just love. Cheers, my friends, and Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

May the road rise up to meet you,

May the wind be always at your back,

May the sun shine warm upon your face,

The rain fall soft upon your fields,

And until we meet again,

May God hold you in the palm of His hand.

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