Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Whether or not you hail from Ireland, everyone gets to claim some “luck o’ the Irish” today. Because St. Patrick’s Day falls on a Sunday this year, that gives you the whole day to spend with your family, making it a great year to really get into the celebration. Here are some ideas for making the day special:
- Eat traditional foods. When I was a kid, we’d always have corned beef and cabbage on March 17, and we still do this in my house. I grew up not liking it, because everything (corned beef, cabbage, carrots and potatoes) were boiled together, and it just didn’t appeal to me. If this is the case with your family, try cooking the vegetables separately from the meat. You could use ham in place of the corned beef, if you prefer. And if you really don’t care for any of that, then consider serving Shepherd’s Pie, another Irish dish.
- Think green. Literally green, as in the color, not as in environmental friendliness. Add a bit of green food coloring to your kids’ breakfast… green eggs and ham, anyone? Or shamrock pancakes? Dress everyone in green, either from head to toe, or just with green socks or a green hat.
- Go hunting for a four-leaf clover, if it’s green in your area. Explain the difference between a shamrock (three-leaf clover) and a lucky four-leaf clover. If you still have snow on the ground where you live, then make clovers out of green construction paper. You could hide many shamrocks around the house, along with one four-leaf clover, and give a prize to the child who finds the special one.
- Tell your kids about the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. They may be familiar with this if they’ve seen the Lucky Charms commercials, but let them know that legend says there’s a leprechaun guarding a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. If you’re particularly lucky, maybe you’ll even see a rainbow on St. Patrick’s Day, to add to the magic! If not, though, keep it in mind for the next time you do see one.
- Learn about rainbows. If you have a prism (or a garden hose) and it’s a sunny day, you can even make your own by angling the glass or water spray so that the sun shines through it. You can tell them about how a rainbow is made (you can read about it here if you aren’t sure), and show them how they can remember the order of colors in a rainbow by remembering the name Roy G. Biv. (The letters stand for red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet.)
St. Patrick’s Day can be a day full of fun, so try some of these activities with your children! If you have other activities to share, let us know in the comments below.