An Italian’s Take on St. Patrick’s Day

LeprechaunYesterday was St. Patrick’s Day. I tend to relate most strongly with my Italian roots, so I don’t mention my father’s heritage often, but it seems only fair to acknowledge it on the one day a year his nationality gets top billing.

My dad is a wonderful man whose heritage is a volatile mix of Irish, Scottish, German, and Swedish. So, yes, in addition to the passionate Italian in me, I’ve got some whiskey-downing, Scotch-swilling, beer-chugging, Viking-loving blood coursing through these veins. There’s some partying blood in there, and there’s some warrior blood in there, too. So, it’s no surprise I’m not a shy person. I embrace life to its fullest, which means I love big, I cry big, and I get mad… big. Why do anything half-hearted?

irish mealI also celebrate big, which means yesterday’s holiday was a festive one, especially because my in-laws are in town to celebrate with us. (Yes, I’ll use anything as an excuse to celebrate, but come on, a holiday and family visiting? Who wouldn’t celebrate?) Beer, Irish stew, cabbage, potatoes, soda bread… even Irish coffees for dessert.

After all that, I swear I saw a leprechaun with his shillelagh in my yard, holding a four leaf clover sitting on his pot of gold. But before I got outside to greet him, he disappeared over the rainbow, and it was just me in the yard trying to keep my dogs out of the pool, which, I have to tell you, is not easy under the best of circumstances.

Now it’s time to settle back into Lenten restrictions until Easter. So, I’ll leave you with this Irish blessing as I countdown the remaining weeks:

May you always have walls for the winds,
A roof for the rain, tea beside the fire,
Laughter to cheer you, those you love near you,
And all your heart might desire.

Published by Staci Troilo

A writer fascinated with interpersonal relationships, the importance of family, and the relevance of heritage. Learn more at

10 thoughts on “An Italian’s Take on St. Patrick’s Day

  1. You do the holidays well. I used to until I burned myself out. Beware – seeing leprechauns in your front yard is the first sign. Or it means you need glasses. Then again, it just might mean you had a spectacular day. I vote for the latter.


    1. Definitely the latter…

      With the kids still home, I try to do all the holidays. Chinese New Year, St. Patrick’s Day, Cinco de Mayo… if there’s a reason somewhere to celebrate something, we celebrate it. They’ll be out of the house before I know it, so I enjoy them while I can.


  2. I went to a 50th birthday party on St. Paddy’s Day. Had a great time, but no traditional food. As for me, I can skip the mashed potatoes, but love a good Irish stew. Since I did not do the traditional celebration, I missed the leprechaun. 🙂


      1. I’m on my way. If all goes well and I don’t get lost, I can be there by dinner on Thursday. Have some garlic bread and spare ribs for my gnocci along with a nice tossed salad!


  3. I’m sorry but what’s a shillelagh and why on earth would a leprechaun have one? If you saw said leprechaun in the back yard then I believe you are partying way too hard. 🙂


    1. All leprechauns have them… they’re their canes or staffs. And isn’t the point of St. Patrick’s Day to party? You can’t party too hard on 3-17. Of course, if you are seeing leprechauns and wake up with a headache on 3-18, you might want to reconsider that viewpoint…


  4. Too much corned beef for me yesterday. Need to dial it back down now to regular diet (pastas that end in the letter “i”). 🙂


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