We are all about holidays over here – any excuse to eat themed snacks and set a fun table!
Holidays are an important part of our family life, but holidays are a time to make memories and be together. They shouldn’t be a source of stress. Easier said than done, especially with little ones, but as with everything else, I’ve found that tweaking my own expectations and simplifying our activities makes these special days enjoyable for all of us!
Some years I’ve gone “all out” with homemade treats and multiple crafts. Some years, we just put our green on and call it a day. The point isn’t to stress yourself or your family by doing what someone else is doing with their kids – you should do what brings you joy!
This year I did mostly store-bought treats, and kept things green, but easy!
Green corn muffins. Those few drops of green food coloring really made their day, but if you’re into it, there are some great recipes for healthier options like pistachio muffins.
St. Patrick’s Day outfits and Dollar Tree props. We put these on pretty much any chance we got! Rule #1 for partying in an Irish family – the noisier, the better! Even Cassandra got the memo!
Make parent dress up like a leprechaun. I found this leprechaun outfit at Target online and the kids begged me to order it for Hubby/Daddy. I ordered it and then subtly left it on his bureau. 😉 He did not disappoint! (I’m pretty sure he basically uses his kids as an excuse to be as goofy as he can, any chance he gets. Just saying! 😉 )
Shamrock cookies. A local mom who bakes whipped up these fabulous shamrock cookies which we had as an after-school snack. What is it about kids and seeing their name on their food?! Mine absolutely love personalized food! haha
In the past, I’ve made our own from-scratch cookies, used bagged cookie mix with green sprinkles, and bought whatever Target had on hand. Kids are easy to please – it’s really all about the food color matching the holiday! 😛
Green bagels. These are from our favorite bagel store and it’s a tradition we love. (Locals, Bagel Biz is seriously the best bagel store on Long Island. Go get you some!)
I got extra of these to bring to Mikey’s class party this afternoon. #givemeallthebagels (Mikey’s teacher is ridiculously awesome – does tons of hands-on activities and marks any holiday she can with the class!)
Leprechaun art: There a ton of great craft ideas on Pinterest, so the older kids and I browsed through together until we found one we all liked. I cut the pieces out for the younger kids, and we put our leprechauns together after school yesterday! I ran out of yellow paper so we used felt for the buckle. You could also just color white paper yellow, or use a totally different color. The point is having fun together, not making “perfect” kid art. 😉
Books: Reading is always a favorite way for us to mark special days, and there are a TON of wonderful children’s books for St. Patrick’s Day. I linked (aff.) to a few of our most-loved that I actually ended up buying, but we also always pop into the library to grab a few new ones to try each year!
Religious traditions: Besides the general Irish/party fun, we also remember the guy who started it all – St. Patrick! I printed out these coloring sheets, we watched this St. Patrick movie, and we talked about St. Patrick, the shamrock and the Trinity.
If you’re a Pinterest-lover, here’s a special pic just for you. Because Pinterest has pretty much replaced google for me when it comes to ideas like these! 😛
Celebrating holidays has become such a favorite part of their childhood, and I’m crossing my fingers that they never get “too cool” for fun like this!! I know holidays aren’t for everyone, and unfortunately have become so commercialized in recent years, but in our family they are such a source of joy, and bring many happy times to our home.
Do you celebrate any/every holiday you can, do you stick with the big ones… or you not a holiday fan at all?