Green is the color associated with St. Patrick’s Day (Saturday, March 17, 2012). However, in today’s environmentally conscious world, green has another very important meaning.
Here are some ideas for going green:
- Switch to Energy Star-rated CFL bulbs, like GHRI fave Satco’s Mini Spiral S6202; they use 75 percent less energy and last 10 times longer than standard bulbs. You’ll knock $30 off your electric bill for each bulb over its lifetime.
- Plant trees around the house strategically (on the south and west sides; shading the air-conditioning unit, if possible) to save up to about $250 a year on cooling and heating.
- Install dimmer switches in the living and dining rooms and three bedrooms to dial down electricity fees about $37 a year.
- Since 1992 legislation, all new showerheads must have a flow rate of 2.5 gallons per minute or lower. Replace your old showerhead and save up to $45 a month for a family of four.
- Wrap an insulation blanket around your water heater and lower its running cost as much as 9 percent.
- Run a full dishwasher whenever possible — it uses half or less of the water and energy of washing the same dishes by hand. And don’t waste water by rinsing before loading (today’s machines are designed to power off the mess).
- Invest in a faucet-mounted water filter for a low $30, and use refillable bottles like our top-rated GHRI pick, the Nalgene OTG Everyday 24-ounce bottle. By giving up bottled water, a family of four can save about $1,250 a year.
Now for the green associated with St. Patrick’s Day.
Here are some funfacts about the holiday:
St. Patrick’s Day Celebration
- Corned beef and cabbage is a traditional St. Patrick’s Day dish. In 2009, roughly 26.1 billion pounds of beef and 2.3 billion pounds of cabbage were produced in the United States.
- Irish soda bread gets its name and distinctive character from the use of baking soda rather than yeast as a leavening agent.
- Lime green chrysanthemums are often requested for St. Patrick’s Day parades and celebrations.
St. Patrick’s Day Parade
- The first St. Patrick’s Day parade took place in the United States on March 17, 1762, when Irish soldiers serving in the English military marched through New York City.
- More than 100 St. Patrick’s Day parades are held across the United States. New York City and Boston are home to the largest celebrations.
- At the annual New York City St. Patrick’s Day parade, participants march up 5th Avenue from 44th Street to 86th Street. More than 150,000 people take part in the event, which does not allow automobiles or floats.
- The original Irish name for these figures of folklore is “lobaircin,” meaning “small-bodied fellow.”Belief in leprechauns probably stems from Celtic belief in fairies, tiny men and women who could use their magical powers to serve good or evil. In Celtic folktales, leprechauns were cranky souls, responsible for mending the shoes of the other fairies. Though only minor figures in Celtic folklore, leprechauns were known for their trickery, which they often used to protect their much-fabled treasure.Leprechauns had nothing to do with St. Patrick or the celebration of St. Patrick’s Day, a Catholic holy day. In 1959, Walt Disney released a film called Darby O’Gill & the Little People, which introduced America to a very different sort of leprechaun than the cantankerous little man of Irish folklore. This cheerful, friendly leprechaun is a purely American invention, but has quickly evolved into an easily recognizable symbol of both St. Patrick’s Day and Ireland in general.
The above information is from:
If you are in the mood to cook, here’s a recipe for corned beef and cabbage.