Just another WordPress.com site

Posts tagged “family time

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!!


Walking in a Winter Wonderland….Time with My Son and My Camera

I hadn’t really been out of the house for days, with being ill and not being able to kick it. Plus, the weather has been just downright nasty with either rain or freezing cold that makes my nerves stand on end. I actually prefer when it snows lightly. Now that I am able to better appreciate the beauty of snow, I really want to be out in it. The wonder of each snowflake, the icicles, the formations all leave me in awe. I have missed my Fall walks with my camera. I wanted to see what I was missing out there in nature. The sun was shining and so I resigned myself to bundle up well, don the boots and hit the sidewalk at least for a few minutes. My son wanted to go with  me, and I really wanted his company. When he and I have time alone exploring as we do, I know it makes him as happy as it makes me. And we spent a lot more than a few minutes outside.

We wandered around and saw how beautiful the sun glinted off the snow piles.  We looked for icicles and saw absolutely gorgeous formations of them all around us. If we were driving by or walking by fast, we never would have noticed them. We saw all the berries left from Fall, and it was like they were almost preserved from the cold, some even encased in ice.

I was in wonder of the beauty God creates all around us. I appreciated the moments spent with my son as we talked about life and nature and what he planned to do when he grows up (which is a list of about 100 things, but all very nice assets to humanity). He had some things he wanted to show me by our local Ashland County Courthouse. I knew the architecture would be great of course there and I wasn’t disappointed. The trimming of the building are delicious.  He loves the old bell there, and the cannon, and he wiped the snow away from the plaque that told about the time capsule from 1976. He even plans to attend the opening of it, coming back to Ashland. I know it is driving him nuts what is inside it. He is such a treasure hunter. I watched as he wiped the cannon in various areas–brushing off the snow to find the manufacturer’s imprints, the years (1884), the little intricacies imbedded in it. He looked like a little museum curator. I stood and watched him, filled with love. His treasures are history, and though I too love history, I could relate even more as my treasures are finding the various photographic angles that are around us each day.

I know what it is like to be busy in life. I know what it is like to rush and work so hard that you never see your kids or go outside. Being on this side of that now, I certainly appreciate these moments even more. And I believe that my son, and my children, will certainly have better memories of their mom in their mind as well as in photos! I urge everyone that if you aren’t seeing these small things in life, appreciating the world around us, remembering history and appreciating it, that you stop what you are doing and figure out how to get it in your life without excuses. Nothing is more important than quality time with your children and the outdoors.

Here is a short slide show of some of the photos we took today, all which are available as prints for sale if you’d like a little piece of our adventure (please don’t steal my photos, they are copyrighted). Please leave comments and let me know what you think!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.