My town is St. Pat's crazy. Many years ago students at Missouri S&T (at that time known as “Missouri School of Mines) declared St. Patrick the Patron Saint of Engineers. Although it's a bunch of blarney, the students plan all year for this holiday. This weekend, the 106th “Best Ever” St. Pat's celebration will follow annual tradition and feature an honorary St. Patrick and his Court, 3 days of crazy games on the Fraternity lawns, and a downtown street mop-painted green for the parade.
Many families in town tend to get caught up in these shenanigans. Our family will attend the parade and chuckle at the green street while we try to distract the kids from seeing the green-painted-half-dressed college students. (Mommy, did you see that? Yes dear, it was a leprechaun!) The kids will gather as much candy and as many beads as they can carry. We will all wear green to avoid getting pinched, and we will have corned beef and cabbage for supper.
I think this is a pretty common description of St. Patrick's celebrations for families throughout the US (perhaps without the green streets and the “leprechauns”). But my favorite thing about St. Patrick's Day is seeing the “Irish” art creations that my kids bring home from school: construction paper leprechauns holding pots of carefully cut golden paper circles; big green construction paper top hats or a shamrock headband; a tissue paper rainbow.
So in honor of this fun little holiday that has made it's way across the pond to countries other than Ireland, I leave you with this lovely Irish blessing for the wee ones:
May all the blessings of our Lord touch your life today.
May He send His little angels to protect you on your way.
Such a miraculous gift, sent from above.
Someone so precious to cherish and love.
May sunshine and moonbeams dance over your head.
As you quietly slumber in your bed.
May good luck be with you wherever you go.
And your blessings outnumber the shamrocks that grow.
What are your favorite St. Patrick's Day traditions?