update: This post was written in 2019 and I’m updating it for 2020 in the middle of Coronavirus #socialdistancing. While we’re all trying to deal with these lifestyle changes (which are hopefully short-term) and our emotions are all over this it’s important for everyone to take a break and have a little family fun. Holidays like St. Patrick’s Day are a perfect excuse for this.
I remembered to pick up Lucky Charms and corned beef during our stock up grocery run. But even if you didn’t how about takeout or delivery from a local Irish restaurant. Search your pantry for green food dye, rainbow sprinkles and anything naturally green and have fun with it. Look around your house and improvise for some fun ideas. Craft paints, nail polish, green clothes. Print out some fun Leprechaun memes and hang around the house. #wegotthis
back to the regular post….
When my son was younger, St. Patrick’s Day meant setting up a leprechaun trap. In some households, the Leprechaun causes trouble like knocking over chairs. I also always left a trail of shamrocks and gold coins that let to a pot filled with a few green colored gifts (usually candy and a swimsuit since its almost pool season here in Arizona). Even if you’re not Irish it’s still fun to be festive. Everything on my list is pretty simple and inexpensive.
Showing your family they’re special to you
Teaching and learning, focus on the cultural aspects of the holiday
Another reason I’ll add to this list is teaching about cultures. Based on media and what stores are selling for the holiday, my son started to get the impression St. Patrick’s Day is a holiday celebrating beer. This started a conversation where we talked about the cultural traditions behind the holiday and a chance to research the culture. One of the things I like to do on St. Patrick’s Day is to enjoy an Irish meal at an Irish restaurant for the full experience. Because St. Patrick’s Day can turn into a drinking and party holiday out at my Irish restaurants/pubs we try to go earlier in the day or the day before the crowd gets crazier. The same goes for Mardis Gras and Cinco de Mayo.
11 ways to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with tweens and teens
- Eat all things green – make all green foods for a meal. Dye pancakes green and top with rainbow sprinkles. Make green jello. Pasta with pesto sauce and a side of green veggies. Add some green dye to milk. Chocolate mint ice cream (if you can find one that is green) for dessert.
- Irish dinner – Cook up (or go out for) a traditional Irish meal. Corned beef and cabbage is one my favorite Irish meals.
- Gift your teens fun green socks to wear on St. Patty’s Day. Something fun, simple and festive.
- Give them a pack of St. Patricks’s Day pins or stickers that they can hand out to friends.
- St. Patrick’s Day holiday home decor. This isn’t a holiday to go overboard with but you can add a wreath or welcome sign on your patio or a decoration or two in your home. I updated my mantel for the holiday this year.
- St. Patrick’s Day-themed bento lunch – this one is more for the tweens than teens. The older ones you could add a holiday chocolate to their lunch.
- Dye the toilet water green. I don’t think boys will ever outgrow the amusement they get from this.
- Serve Lucky Charms cereal for breakfast. Serve it with green milk.
- Binge-watch Irish movies.
- Fun manicures with green nail polish themed designs if you’re really creative.
- Bake Irish Soda Bread together – super easy quick bread version with no yeast
Need some ideas on how to decorate your home for St. Patricks Day? Check out our St. Patrick’s Day decor home tour
Planning ahead for Easter – we have some great ideas for making easter fun for teens and tweens