I think most adults view St. Patrick’s Day as a fake holiday. It seems to be an excuse to drink Guinness, wear green and pretend to be Irish. Retailers seem to be going with that for their products, anyways! 😂
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Our family tends to keep it pretty basic for St. Patrick’s Day. As I said in the Valentine’s Day post, we used to teach our kids the history of St Patrick and his role as a missionary to Ireland. Patrick’s story is an amazing example of forgiveness (see book list below for resources).
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Our views about holidays
In recent years, our focus has shifted away from direct instruction about Christian history. Instead, we use holidays as a way to help our children learn about different cultures and peoples. We also enjoy celebrating the fun and silly aspects of holidays.
As parents, Brian and I tended to take life too seriously in our earlier years with our children (an occupational hazard of us both being firstborns😉).
@dinkumtribe When you realize your holiday is not serving the needs of your family, it’s time to reconsider. @dinkumtribe @dinkumtribe @dinkumtribe #momguilt #momguilttiktok #adhdholiday #adhdholidaytip #adhdholidayhack #adhdfriendlyhouse #adhdholidays #adhdholidaytips #adhdfamilies #adhdparenting #adhdproblems #adhdfamilylife #adhdfactoftheday #adhdinfo #adhdingiftedkids #adhdstruggle #adhdinwomenandgirls #adhdinformation #adhdlearningaboutadhd #momsofadhdkids #parentingadhd #adhdtiktok #neurodivergenttiktok ♬ original sound – DinkumTribe ADHD family travel
So now we are making a concerted effort to change that and just enjoy our children. We recognize that our time with them is finite and they will soon be grown and flown.
Since Easter is celebrated on a different day each year, there are times when Easter and St. Patrick’s Day occur in close conjunction. In the years when St. Patrick’s Day is within a few days of Easter, we skip the St. Patrick’s Day celebrations altogether.
Here’s some of the fun traditions we do for St. Patrick’s Day. Nothing too complicated or serious, and definitely nothing that’s too much work for the parents!
@dinkumtribe Parents deserve to enjoy the holidays as well, so do what makes you happy, even if it’s not the traditional things. @dinkumtribe @dinkumtribe @dinkumtribe #adhdholiday #adhdholidaytip #adhdholidayhack #adhdholidays #adhdfamilies #adhdholidaytips #adhdparenting #adhdproblems #adhdfamilylife #neurodivergenttiktok #momsofadhdkids #parentingadhd #neurodivergentparenting #adhdchristmas #adhdthanksgiving ♬ original sound – DinkumTribe ADHD family travel
St. Patrick’s Day Food
I have done the big corned beef and potatoes feast before, mostly because I enjoy corned beef on occasion. However, once I realized that I was the only one who actually liked it, I decided it wasn’t worth it for me to cook. Cooking is not my favorite thing!
Instead, I pick up some Lucky Charms and drop some green food coloring in the milk. We rarely buy sugary cereals, so this is a special treat for my kids! Other years I have made chocolate chip scones with green sprinkles (recipe is in my Valentine’s Breakfast post.
The last couple of years, Costco has had this fun shamrock-shaped ravioli. That makes a super easy lunch or dinner, and I get some dollar store St. Patrick’s Day plates and napkins. Keeping it simple here, folks!
This year we came up with a super easy alternate meal idea. We made corned beef hash and eggs with toast, and we all agreed that this will be our new St. Paddy’s Day corned beef dish.
@dinkumtribe Most of our family doesn’t enjoy traditional corned beef stew, so this year we went with this easy alternative. #cornedbeefhashwithegg #cornedbeefhash #marykitchen #easystpatricksdayrecipe #cornedbeefandegg #stpaddys2023 #kidfriendlyrecipe #happystpatday ♬ The St. Patrick’s Day Song – St. Patrick’s Day Music Pub Crawlers
Books and Activities
We have loved reading holiday books with our kids! Here’s our favorite St. Patrick’s Day books.
- Jamie O’Rourke, by Tomie DePaola
- The Story of St. Patrick’s Day, by Patricia A. Pingry
- The Night Before St. Patrick’s Day, by Natasha Wing.
After reading about leprechaun traps in The Night before St. Patrick’s Day, my kids were all about making some traps last year! I had a good chuckle to myself about the engineering they were practicing without me having to teach it. It kept them happily engaged for several hours— parenting win!
Last year I hunted up some YouTube videos of kids dancing an Irish jig, which my children all enjoyed watching. Then they tried for themselves, and came away with a better appreciation of the skills and practice necessary to dance a jig well!
Of course we all try to wear something green, too. That’s one of the fun things I love to do because green is my favorite color!
Other fun stuff for St. Patrick’s Day
We have done rainbow crafts some years, and shamrock crafts other years. There are tons of St. Patrick’s Day activities available, and you really can make a whole unit study on rainbows, shamrocks, Ireland, leprechauns, St. Patrick… you get the picture.
I love doing holidays with my kids! However, I discovered that when I put too much pressure on myself, I lost the enjoyment of being with my kids. It somehow became about performance and Pinterest-worthy creativity, and I don’t want to be a high-pressure parent.
@dinkumtribe Gotta love easy- our St. Patrick’s Day breakfast is Lucky Charms with green milk! @dinkumtribe @dinkumtribe @dinkumtribe #stpatricksdayactivities #stpatricksday2023 #luckycharmsmarshmallows #luckycharmscereal #nomnomnom #magicallydelicious #90sthrowback #momlifemadeeasy #momlifemadesimple ♬ Make It Rainbow – Lucky Charms
My new attitude towards holidays is this: if it’s fun and doesn’t take a lot of preparation, let’s do it! If my kids want to do something and they have the ability to do it, I say, “Go for it!” As a result, my kids engage their own creativity, and I get to just enjoy cheering them on.
Do you celebrate St. Patrick’s day with your kids? I’d love to hear in the comments if you celebrate other late winter/early springtime activities too!
© Copyright 2022 Jennifer D. Warren. Updated: March 17, 2023.