In this post, I’m giving you 7 ways to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, but you definitely don’t need to be Irish to use them. I remember as a kid, learning how to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in school. Of course, you had to wear green, or someone would pinch you. Nowadays, I’m pretty sure that wouldn’t fly. I specifically remember that if a kid didn’t have obvious green on their clothing, they would often say, “My underwear are green!”, but then other kids would ask to see, which, again, would be a BIG no-no today!
One year, when I was probably 8 or 9, we couldn’t find anything green for me to wear that day, so my mom gave me this round, green button she had, (the kind with the pin) that said, “Kiss Me, I’m Irish!”. I’m not sure what she was thinking, sending me to school like that, but in hindsight, it just seems like a bad idea.
AM I IRISH, AND, DOES IT EVEN REALLY MATTER?
I was never quite sure if it was true that I was part Irish. My dad always told me he was English, Irish, Scottish and Dutch, and my mom was Swedish and German. So, I had no idea what percentage of Irish I was, or if it was even accurate.
Thanks to technology today, and one of those DNA kits, I now know that I am 31% Irish/Scottish. You’d think they would break that up, because I’m sure that people in Ireland and Scotland wouldn’t be ok with being lumped all together like that. Regardless, I’ll celebrate it, whether or not i’m actually Irish. But my heritage is not supposed to be the subject of this post, so let me get back on track.
SOME HISTORY ON THE HOLIDAY
I think that if you’re celebrating St. Patrick’s Day, you should at least have some idea why you are doing it. So, I’ll give you a brief bit of history, as I understand it.
St. Patrick was actually born in Britain, but he was kidnapped at the age of 16 and taken to Ireland as a slave. He escaped and later went back to Ireland, with the intent to spread Christianity. It’s been said that he used the 3-leaf clover, or “Shamrock”, to demonstrate the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, which is the Holy Trinity in Christianity. Historians seem a little bit skeptical of that, but it’s a nice story, anyway.
It has also been said that St. Patrick is responsible for driving the snakes out of Ireland. To me, that’s definitely a reason to make someone a Saint. I am not a fan of those reptiles.
Anywho, St. Patrick’s Day, which is apparently the day of his death, became celebrated as a feast day, in Ireland. Today, the day is associated with corned beef and cabbage, Irish bread, wearing green or shamrock’s and even dyeing beer green!
Celebrating in the U.S.
St. Patrick’s Day is a big deal in New York, Boston, Chicago, Savannah and Philadelphia. They all have huge parades, the largest of which is in New York. In Chicago, they dump 40 pounds of green dye into the Chicago River to celebrate. Don’t worry, though, because it’s vegetable dye. I’m not sure the fact that it’s vegetable dye matters to all of the green fish that are now forced to celebrate the holiday by being green, but at least we know they won’t get pinched, right? But then I can’t help but think of the wise words of Kermit T. Frog, “It’s not easy being green.”, and it makes me feel bad for them.
Links for St. Patrick’s Day Gifts
7 SUGGESTIONS FOR CELEBRATING
So, how can you celebrate St. Patrick’s Day this year? I have some suggestions.
- Have corned beef and cabbage for dinner. I’m not really a big fan of it, but any day that I don’t have to think about what I’ll make for dinner is a good day!
- Try making some Irish soda bread! My husband, who doesn’t have a drop of Irish in him, has really mastered the stuff, and I will add the recipe in this post for you.
- If you have young kids, take some rocks and spray paint them gold. Then hide them in your yard and tell them that a leprechaun came and hid gold nuggets in the yard for them to find. I used to do that for my kids, and they still remember it fondly.
- Dye your beer green. OR, I will give you a great recipe for a green cocktail, and that’s always fun. This recipe from pizzarie.com for a St. Patrick’s Day Shamrock Sour Cocktail is a good one to try!
- Do something fun for friends, colleagues, or your kids & their friends, and give them some kind of fun little treat. I got these cute little gift bags from Amazon (links above) and just added fun hot cocoa packets and chocolate gold coins. No big deal and it will hopefully make them smile!
- Make a delicious shamrock shake. Here is the link to AllRecipes.com for the recipe. If you like mint-chocolate, you will love this milkshake!
- Have some Irish coffee. I found a great recipe from the Pioneer Woman, that is amazing. She uses some brown sugar in the recipe, and I think it’s a great touch! It does include whisky, so I don’t know if it’s the greatest cup of coffee to have before heading to the office in the morning. Maybe save this one for the evening.
HAPPY ST. PATRICK’S DAY!
I hope this gave you a little bit of inspiration to make it a fun day, whether or not you are actually Irish. I think it’s ok for us all to be “unofficially Irish” for one day.
- 2 cups self-rising flour, sifted
- 3 tbls. sugar
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 1 12 oz. bottle room temp beer (Guiness is best)
- 1.5 cups grated cheese, divided (I use cheddar, but you can use any hard cheese)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees
- In a lg mixing bowl, add sifted self-rising flour, sugar and salt. Stir in the room temp beer and continue stirring until batter is thick and fluffy. This should look similar to a Bisquick batter, so add more beer if it seems too thick
- Set 3 tbls of shredded cheese to the side, and stir the rest of it into the batter.
- Grease two loaf pans and divide the batter between the two.
- Sprinkle the 3 tbls of reserved cheese over the top of the two pans.
- Bake in oven for 1 hour.
- Remove loaf pans from oven and let cool at least 15 minutes before slicing and eating.