Tuesday, March 16, 2010

St. Patty's Day

I love holidays! I jump at any opportunity I have to do something totally fun and out-of-the-ordinary! Of course, I love the BIG holidays; Christmas, Easter, Thanksgiving. But I love the little ones too! On President's Day, I always make a cherry pie and we learn fun little trivia about our past presidents.
St. Patrick's Day is always a fun one for us!

{a photo of my lovely purple shamrock I got from my mother planted in a metal McCann's oatmeal canister}
I am enamoured by Ireland! If I could travel to one place in the world, it would DEFINITELY be Ireland! I love flipping through photos of the verdant land and all the ruins! I am a wee bit Irish {and much more in my heart}. So St. Patrick's Day is much, much too fun for me!
Every St. Patty's Day, I, of course, make sure to dress my kids and myself in something green. For dinner we always eat corned beef, cabbage, red potatoes, turnips, parsnips, Irish brown bread, and usually some kind of green, minty pie or other confection for dessert. During dinner, we talk about St. Patrick's life, and fun little trivia about Ireland.
Afterward, I pass out "airplane tickets" to all my kids and they strap themselves into the couch for a "plane ride" accompanied by the sound of radio static {which sounds like a small airplane engine if you find the right AM frequency} as we flip through a photo book of Ireland together. Soon we land in Ireland, at which time I turn on my Rick Steves' Ireland film.

I LOVE Rick Steves! Okay, maybe I'm just silly, but I love watching his travels across the world, learning little tidbits of trivia and a bit of history too! You can see his programs on PBS stations, most libraries carry his films {or make them available through inter-library loan}, and I've even seen a few of his films at the local video rental store.
After our trip to Ireland, we must all listen to Irish music and dance a little jig {at which point, some of my children groan . . . until they actually start jumping around & dancing. Then they all really get into it and I end up with a bunch of exhausted boys!} As they all get ready for bed I sing them the Old Irish Blessing which I learned in High School for a choir competition, and send them off to dreamland with lots of hopeful, verdantly green thoughts.

Irish music is everyday music to me. I own a lot of it and listen to it often. It is easily my favorite music in the world. I love that most Irish music is not a bit temperate. Either it is full of spirit and energy, and you can't help but want to get up and do a jig; or it is utterly haunting and mournful, and brings to mind all the sadness that has ever come upon you.
The group, Deanta {loosely pronounced jun-ta} is one of my favorite groups! The lead singer, Mary Dillon has the most beautiful, clear, expressive voice I have ever heard, and there isn't a song I don't love on any of their albums. Some of my other favorite Irish groups: Altan, Teada, Back of the Moon, and Cherish the Ladies.

Wishing you all a very Irish St. Patrick's Day!

Fondly, Kate

1 comment:

  1. That sounds like so much fun! I want to go to Ireland with you guys! I love that you make learning fun by doing all this fun stuff about Ireland. You are a super cool Mom, Kate!