This post was written by Liz Faria from A Mothership Down. Leprechaun trap up top was made by Mazzy and Harlow!
This St. Patrick’s Day is not like St. Patrick’s Days in the past. The parades are cancelled. Many of us are at home with our kids indefinitely, in the name of “social distancing.” And Coronavirus is on our minds at about, I dunno, 1,000 times the rate of a cold Guinness. If this doesn’t set the stage for holiday fun, well, I’m not sure what does. Ahem.
Even in better times, if you’re the parent of young kids, it can feel like a lot of pressure to keep up with all of the holiday “magic-making” swirling around you. I’m pretty sure St. Patrick’s Day wasn’t such a big deal when we were kids, in that blessed (not to be mistaken with #blessed) social media-free time, before Pinterest came along and raised the stakes for all of us. Which can be hard for us average parents who love our kids but don’t even know what we’re making for dinner, let alone have the mental capacity for using our Elf on a Shelf to its full capacity.
I will readily admit that my “whimsy” game isn’t as strong as I’d like it to be, especially when it comes to holiday prep that requires me to be crafty. But my 3-year-old and 6-year-old? They’re at that fleeting age where they’re absolutely enchanted by anything remotely magical. Like a toothbrush that lights up. And a tub of slime. This is precisely why, despite myself, I ended up with an Elf on a Shelf swinging from my lampshade this December. It was easy to toss that little guy to the rafters, and my kids went ballistic with joy when they saw it. So, yeah, the bar isn’t that high. Which is good news for all of us!
It means that even if you don’t think like a well-organized Pinterest board, you can still do some small things to make St. Patrick’s Day fun for your kids. And this year, of all years, I think it’s especially important to work in a little extra magic.
First step is letting your kids do some of the heavy lifting. If you are looking for educational things to do with your kids today, have them make a leprechaun trap! Many schools do this in class because it’s ultimately a STEM exercise. Just gather some materials and let them have at it. (Editor’s Note: The trap up top was created by Mazzy and Harlow with no help from mom whatsoever.)
Then, on St. Patrick’s Day, create just a little bit of mischief for your kids to find.
Here are some easy ideas for St. Patrick’s Day mischief:
1) Turn the milk green (using 1-2 drops of food coloring)
2) Hang some of the kids clothes from a ceiling fan
3) Toss chocolate coins or (other whatever treats you have on hand) around the house
4) Turn the toilet water green (again with the 1-2 drops of food coloring)
5) Put a temporary tattoo on your kids’ arms while they sleep (unless they are light sleepers. You couldn’t pay me enough money to do this with my 3-year-old)
6) Turn a few pictures hanging on the wall upside down or sideways
7) Place homemade shamrock cut-outs around the house (this should be easy with any construction paper you have lying around)
8) Make some trails of green glitter on the floor (if you don’t have glitter, cut up some green confetti from that same construction paper)
9) Open all the drawers and cabinets in the kitchen
10) Swap the bags of cereal so the boxes and cereal don’t match (if you can swap a cereal with Lucky Charms, even better!)
11) Switch their sock and underwear drawers
12) Unravel all the toilet paper (Kidding! That would be like telling you to dump out your hand sanitizer! We are being whimsical here, not idiotic).
Hang in there everyone. These are tough times for sure, and as stressful as this is, we still have to make some good memories for our kids. Even in a pandemic.
Leave more ideas in the comments!