Though we look forward to the winter holidays every year, sometimes the spring holidays are almost as fun. As a kids dentist in Mt. Pleasant, though, we also know how much more sugar the average kid consumes around Easter and St. Patrick’s Day.
It’s hard to avoid sweets and candy entirely, but we do recommend watching your family’s sugar intake. Make sure your kids brush their teeth after a sugary treat. If you’re out at a restaurant or visiting relatives, Colgate Wisps make brushing on the go easy.
Now that you’ve made plans for your dental health, we can get to the fun part of St. Patrick’s Day and Easter– the family friendly events and great recipes!
St. Patrick’s Day
St. Patrick’s Day can be a fun and relaxing holiday for families. It’s a time to celebrate where not every restaurant is booked in advance for months, and where we don’t have to spend hours and hours on decorating.
It’s a fun little treat for our kids, and we get to enjoy some Irish food, too. If you’re Irish or Irish-American, you might put some more preparation into the holiday than some of your fellow Lowcountry residents, but it’s never a source of stress like Thanksgiving or Christmas tends to be.
We like to keep it low-key on St. Patrick’s Day, as many of the festivities aren’t geared toward families. Every year, I make corned beef in the crockpot, and we enjoy a nice family meal that only comes along once a year.
If your kids are curious about the history behind St. Patrick’s Day, you can read them this article at National Geographic. If they’re curious about how our friends in Ireland celebrate the holiday, this article is a great source of information.
Here are some family-friendly St. Patrick’s Day events in the Mt. Pleasant and Charleston area:
- Charleston St. Patrick’s Day Parade – We’re lucky enough to live near the site of the biggest St. Patrick’s Day Parade in South Carolina. It begins at 8am with mass at St. Patrick’s church, and the parade begins at 10am. The parade gives us a chance to celebrate everything our own Irish community gives us and contributes to our lives. The parade starts at King and Radcliffe, and proceeds down King. There are always floats from local schools, fire trucks, Irish fiddlers, military floats, sports mascots, and traditional dance. If you’re so inclined, the family-friendly festivities last all day. More information here.
- St. Paddy’s Day Block Party and Parade – This event begins at noon, which gives you plenty of time to enjoy a nice breakfast and prepare for the weather. The block party itself takes place in the Olde Village of North Charleston. There’s so much live Irish music and great food that it’s easy to get lost for an entire day. There are also plenty of games and activities for your kids to enjoy. More information here.
- St. Paddy’s Pawlooza – Bring your four-legged family members to this event at Wannamaker County Park on Saturday the 12th. There’s food, live music, and an off-leash section of the park for your well-behaved pup to enjoy to her heart’s content. If you and your family love dogs, this is an excellent way to spend St. Patrick’s Day. More information here.
If you’re not sure what you’re going to do for food and treats on St. Patrick’s Day, we have a few healthy, low-sugar suggestions:
- Irish Soda Bread – This recipe does contain some brown sugar and raisins, but it’s a relatively low-sugar snack your family will go crazy for. Recipe here.
- Irish Mashed Potatoes with Cabbage and Leeks – There’s no sugar in these mashed potatoes, and this recipe removes a lot of the salt content, as well. The cabbage and leeks give it some more substance, and add to its festive appearance. Everyone loves potatoes, so this is a crowd-pleaser. Recipe here.
- Leprechaun Muffins – These tasty muffins use avocado, kiwis, and lime for their green appearance. And they also leave the extra sugar by the wayside. They’re great for breakfast and for snacktime. Recipe here.
If you’re looking for even more recipes, check out this article from Shape. It’s fully of healthy recipes for pies, drinks, veggie burgers, and more. They’re all good for you, and they’re all green.
Kids always look forward to Easter. It’s a time for colorful eggs, bunnies, and carefree fun in the sun. It means spring is here, and we can spend more time outside enjoying ourselves. That’s not lost on them!
Our daughter’s birthday is the day before Easter this year, so we have to balance two exciting days. It’s been a fun challenge, and we’re going to get it right.
Luckily, Easter brings plenty of options for free or low-cost fun for your kids and family. Here are a few of our favorites:
- Easter Egg Hunt at Alhambra Hall Park – This free event takes place on March 22nd, and begins at 11am. Bring your Easter baskets and prepare for a great Easter egg hunt for kids 6 and under. There’s a jump castle and many other activities, as well. This is a fun, relaxing event in a beautiful park. More information here.
- St. Andrew’s Easter Service – If you’d like to attend a service on Easter, but want to try something new, this comes highly recommended. There’s no admission fee to Boone Hall, and you can enjoy everything the plantation has to offer when the service ends. More information here.
- Easter Eggstravaganza – At 10am on March 26th, the Eggstravaganza begins. Kids get to search for hard boiled eggs at scenic Middleton Place, which they can take to the stable yards for a fun egg dyeing experience. There are plenty of Easter-themed games, stories, and activities to enjoy, as well. More information here.
For Easter dinner, we usually indulge in my Grandmother’s traditional feast. We eat ham, deviled eggs, potato salad, rolls, and other Easter treats.
Easter usually brings along thoughts of dessert and candy, as well, so we thought we’d offer a couple low-sugar alternatives.
These recipes are all festive and delicious, but they come along with a kids dentist in Mt. Pleasant’s recommendation:
- Healthy Lemon Squares – They’re just what they sound like. This is a great, once-a-year treat without tons of added sugar. Recipe here.
- Healthy Sugar Cookies – The recipe for these cookies gives you plenty of options to reduce their sugar content, and they’re delicious either way. They’re also much healthier than your average cookie– plus, who doesn’t like decorating sugar cookies? Recipe here.
When the spring holidays roll around, we’re even more grateful we live in the Lowcountry. The people, the weather, and the scenery make them extra special.
No matter how you celebrate Easter and St. Patrick’s Day, we hope you make the most of your holidays, and enjoy fun, relaxing times with your family.
The Busy Mom