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Shamrocks — like a needle in a haystack

The saying “In like a lion, out like a lamb” is often used to describe the month of March.

It’s a very transitional month — beginning with winter and entering the spring season on the 19th this year — thus ending the month a bit milder.

This winter really hasn’t been that bad, so I’m wondering if we’ll have a large snowstorm in March — just so we know that winter can be very ugly at times.

I don’t know about you, but I’m more than ready to usher in spring. I need sunlight, it just makes me feel better!

So, I’m anxiously awaiting one of my favorite seasons. I love spring, then autumn.

Another event on the calendar is International Women’s Day. Annually on March 8, we celebrate the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women.

The first International Women’s Day gathering took place in 1911 and was supported by over 1 million people.

At present only 50 percent of women are represented in the labor force globally, compared to 76 percent of men.

And an overwhelming majority of women are concentrated in low-paid, lower-skill or domestic occupations.

St. Patrick’s Day is March 17 and is named after the patron saint of Ireland, although he was born in Britain to an aristocratic Christian family.

While a young teenager he was captured and taken to Ireland. He then spent six years in slavery. He returned to Ireland in his 30s as a missionary among the Celtic pagans.

He used Ireland’s native shamrock as a symbol of the Holy Trinity when preaching.

The four-leaf clover comes from the White Clover plant, Trifolium Repens, considered to be the original Shamrock. Other plants may have four leaves but the genuine four-leaf clover usually has a smaller fourth leaf than the other three.

The first leaf represents faith,; the second is for hope; the third symbolizes love; and the fourth is for luck.

In Irish tradition, the Shamrock, or three-leaf clover, represents the Holy Trinity — one leaf for the Father, one for the Son and one for the Holy Spirit. When the Shamrock is found with a fourth leaf, it represents God’s grace.

I found some interesting little tidbits pertaining to St. Patrick’s Day that I would like to share with you.

∫ The first St. Patrick’s Day celebration in the United States was held in Boston, in 1737.

∫ Shamrocks are the national flower/emblem in Ireland.

∫ The color of St. Patrick’s Day was originally blue; green was considered unlucky. It is thought that the shift to green happened because of Ireland’s nickname “The Emerald Isle,” the green in the Irish flag and the shamrock, or clover.

∫ Your odds of finding a true four-leaf clover are one in 10,000.

∫ With the help of Plumbers Union 110, Chicago dyed the river “Kelly” green for St. Patrick’s Day in 1962 for the first time. It took 40 tons of dye and the color lasted about five hours.

∫ According to the 2016 Census, there are 32.3 million United States residents with Irish ancestry. This number is about seven times the population of Ireland itself.

I wrote all of the above article and decided to take a break before continuing. Well, not a good idea for me.

I got very sick this past week and am just now starting to recover.

Let me make a plea to all readers out there — the flu is serious business!

Yes, I get a flu shot every year. Yes, I try to take care of myself.

I was helping family with sick girls, so I thought I might contract it. I had no appetite, tried to drink fluids but my throat was on fire, achy all over.

I just wanted to lie down and be left alone.

After two days my husband took me to MedExpress, and I was diagnosed with influenza B.

The doctor gave me two prescriptions — some derivative of Tamiflu and an antibiotic in case my throat turns into strep.

I got to MedExpress on Sunday morning, Feb. 23, about 9:30 a.m. (they open at 8 a.m.) and was the third positive case already that morning.

Please take care of yourselves! This is nothing to sneeze at (pardon the pun).

I am writing this piece on Wednesday, and I’m still not myself.

However, I did eat a couple bites of mashed potatoes today.

Small steps, right?

So, however you celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, good luck to ya! I won’t be out looking for four-leaf clovers, but I will wear my green to celebrate my part-Irish heritage.

That is, as long as I recover.

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