Where typically we are buried under snow, longingly looking ahead to warmer days and burgeoning life as we enter the last week of February, currently we are seeing patches of boggy lawn with streets lined by banks of crusty grey snow. Rather than shivering and shaking we've been out and about in light jackets — bareheaded and un-mitten-ed.
And it sounds like we can enjoy more of the same for several days to come. Temperatures are actually expected to soar into double digits later this week.
No matter what the rest of winter has in store for us, though, there's no question that we have become inspired to gaze expectantly ahead. We look to spring, to that time of year when existence just becomes a little more carefree. We will doff the heavy outwear and cumbersome boots, our worries over travel on snowy roads ends and we surge forth from our winter cocoons.
Spring is in the air and our daydreams colour with shades of pastels and green. The latter plays a big part in a celebration that arrives just days ahead of winter's demise. St. Patrick's Day, with its images of happy leprechauns, cheery rainbows and verdant shamrocks is a fun and lively party. Like a charming ebullient friend, the Irish holiday chases away any leftover weight of woeful winter to lighten our hearts and brighten the end of the season.
When I think now of St. Patrick's Day, my mind first wanders back to my childhood school days, when the theme was prominent in our arts and crafts. We didn't understand much about the occasion, nor did we know anything about its origins. The story of Ireland would be buried deep in the roots of some of our family trees, but few of us were aware. March 17 was something we celebrated regardless of our lineage. What we did know was that there was something endearing about the day.
St. Patrick's Day is still almost a month away, but with February drawing to a timely, and lovely, close it's not too soon to turn our thoughts that way. Particularly when it comes to preparing. Whether you're an educator looking for images for the classroom, or an establishment contemplating how to promote that green beer, you'll be in need of a great graphics resource. Here are some great collections from iCLIPART.com and Clipart.com, royalty-free subscription services.