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Did your Little Leprechan Leave You a Pot of Gold?

Of course all my life I’ve laughed and celebrated the saying “Erin Go Baugh!” Mostly because Erin is my name, which means Ireland. And yes, of course, that is why my dad named me Erin.  The phrase means Ireland Forever!  My parents have always been immersed in Irish culture and I grew up hearing stories of our time in England and their travels around Great Britain.

I am happy to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with my kids now. They always look forward to holidays in this house. It is probably because we use it as a learning opportunity and a way to celebrate with each other.

I’ve been going out to dinner with friends for St. Patty’s day for the last few years, and so Tim and I will celebrate with our kids on the weekend. But my kids couldn’t wait. They been eagerly awaiting wearing their hair bows (well the girls!!) and will wear them to school on the holiday. 

Game Suggestion

Last friday, when they had a snow day, Emma decided to play her St. Patrick’s day game early that she came up with for the other siblings. She hand-drew a bunch of little leprechauns. Then she put M&Ms in baggies. She hide the leprechauns around the house with the baggies. She drew one little pot of gold, which she hid with $2. It was really cute seeing the kids scavenger for the leprechauns. Her 11-year-old brother probably thought he was a little too old, but they both had fun watching their 3-year-old sister hunt for the little guys and she in fact found the pot ‘o gold too! Our 7-year-old, who organized the game, has been drawing leprechauns for over a month. Each night someone gets a picture of a cute leprechaun.

Cooking for St. Patty’s Day

We’ll have maybe some kind of cabbage or mashed potatoes usually, and this year we are having Irish Chicken and Vegetable Stew, and either Lime Pie or Leprechaun Pie.

Simple Irish Stew

  • 4 cups cooked, cubed chicken breast meat
  • 2/3 cup sliced fresh mushrooms
  • 1 cup chopped onion, sautéed in butter
  • 1-1/2 cups chopped carrots
  • 6 cups chicken stock
  • 1 teaspoon dried sage
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil leaves
  • 1 teaspoon garlic salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 1 (10 ounce) package frozen mixed vegetables, thawed
  • 3 cups cooked, diced red potatoes
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 1/8 cup all-purpose flour

Combine chicken, mushrooms, onion, carrots and stock in a large saucepan over medium heat. Simmer until carrots are tender, about 10 minutes. Stir in sage, basil, garlic salt, parsley, mixed vegetables, potatoes and celery and cook until heated through. Stir in flour to thicken sauce, then you can serve. I prefer to throw it in the crock pot and let it cook all day.

History of St. Patrick’s Day

Whatever you decide to do to celebrate, don’t forget to teach your kids why we celebrate the holiday and why it is so important to the people of Ireland. Of course, there are about 34 million Americans who have Irish heritage also, which is why it is a common holiday here as well (in fact, Ireland’s population is just 4 million). St. Patrick’s day is celebrated on March 17, because that is the day that it is believed that St. Patrick died in 461 A.D.  At a young age, St. Patrick was sold into slavery to a sheep farmer. He finally escaped in his twenties and spent quite a bit of time in the monastery.  In his thirties, he returned to Ireland as a Christian missionary and is revered for his work by the Irish people. If you’d like to read more info on St. Patrick’s day, check out this link: http://holidays.kaboose.com/patrick-history.html

So, as the weather breaks, get outside and find a four-leaf clover. Each leaf means something, one for hope, one for faith, one for love, and one for luck. May the luck of the Irish be with you as you observe the Wearing ‘O the Green!!

One response

  1. Erin! I love you blog! As a fellow Irish Gal (okay you know I’m the half Irish half German friend that you have!), I really enjoy your stories! The girls are stunning! Thank you for sharing this with me!
    Much love,
    Tamara

    March 18, 2011 at 1:47 am

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