Growing up, I had a strong sense of my Irish heritage. I also knew I was Spanish, but didn’t have a strong sense of what that meant. Not then. So, the Irish side drove much of my connection to my family’s heritage as a child. My mother’s maiden name starts with the familiar O’, so it would have been hard to avoid, anyway.

Like many Irish Americans, my family emigrated out of Ireland during the potato famine. They weren’t exactly welcomed with open arms. My mother still has a sign hanging in her house as a reminder of those times: “Irish Need Not Apply.”

The Irish spent years working to change those attitudes. And they eventually did. You can read all about the history of the Irish in America here.

Unsurprisingly, St. Patrick’s Day has long been a big day in my family. And like any good Irish family, we celebrate with food: Irish soda bread and Irish stew, specifically. (Although now that I live on the West coast with a husband who is not fond of lamb, it’s more beef stew with a Guinness on the side.)

The soda bread is my favorite. But my daughter’s favorite part of St. Patrick’s Day is not the food. It’s the leprechauns.

Ever since Nola’s first-grade teacher had her class make leprechaun traps, she’s determined to catch one. We even have shamrocks in the house year-round to make the house inviting.

But the leprechauns have proven elusive. Maybe that’s because they’re busy doing other things.

Just like the one in Kristine Grayson’s “Cosmic Balances Inc.” So, as my St. Patrick’s Day gift to you, I’m giving you the ebook free this week. (No, gift-giving isn’t normally a thing for St. Patrick’s day, but I like any excuse to give our readers free stuff.)

Click here to get the story and find out why poor Grint’s St. Patrick’s Day just took a turn for the worse.

So, enjoy the story, wear some green, enjoy some Irish food or drink, and have a very happy St. Patrick’s Day this Friday!

Allyson Longueira is publisher of WMG Publishing. She is an award-winning writer, editor and designer, working mother, and brain tumor survivor.