Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Even if you’re not Irish, you may feel an impulse to wear GREEN today or maybe even sport a derby hat. Our family is mostly of German-Swiss ancestry, but once we lived in the Killarney Shores neighborhood of our city with streets named Emerald Isle Circle, St. Patrick’s Lane, one even named Leprechaun Court. I wrote about our tussle with the City to keep our community GREEN. You can read about it here.

Speaking of leprechauns, here’s a cheeky fellow pausing in his jig to stare at a washerwoman scrubbing the laundry.


A one-minute listen: Musicians joyfully strum and fiddle the familiar tune!



There’s no indication what kind of soap this industrious woman used, but I’m sure it wasn’t Gain or Tide. If she is like my Grandma Longenecker, she may have made her own soap.

Pat Campbell reminisces about her grannie making lye soap for laundry and then washing her hair with the same product, producing shining locks.


Grandma Fannie’s hands were always busy, shown here canning peaches.

Mondays were her wash days and I can’t verify exactly what soap recipe she used, but I do remember her large tub on the back porch filled with the pungent smell of lye and probably borax and ammonia. like the recipe shown below.


After the soap mixture congealed, my Grandma sliced it into good-sized beige blocks with a sharp knife and stored it on a wooden shelf for Monday wash-days.



An Old Testament scripture refers to another kind of washing, the kind King David needed after he committed adultery with Bathsheba and schemed the death of her husband, Uriah, in battle.

Image GoodSalt.com


David laments his crime in Psalm 51:7, and entreats God to cleanse him with hyssop and wash him from the stain of his sin.

Psalm 51:7

Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean;
wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.  NIV


God forgave King David’s grievous sin, and he was restored to the joy of his salvation!



Do you or your family celebrate St. Patrick’s Day?

What memories do you have of “doing the washing” in your childhood home?

How do you “celebrate” work?


Photo courtesy of Artist Cliff Beaman – Dublin, GA



Note: I will return when my computer feels ready to cooperate!   🙂