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Healthy and fun alternative treats for Easter
I find Easter, Valentine’s Day, and Christmas to be holidays of absolute “healthy eating sabotage” for parents. First, it starts with the school teacher sending the kids home with a little goody bag, then the grandparents add more candy and don’t forget the sweet neighbour next door, and then the doting aunties and godparents too. Suddenly you have all this chocolate in your home without any reasonable way to eat those delicious treats in a balanced way.
Why is the Easter chocolate tradition so troublesome?
The gesture is soooo very generous of the people who care about our children and at the same time it is difficult for us as parents to explain to the children why they cannot eat it all.
The amount of chocolate and candy is way too much to consume in a balanced way. It is also difficult to resist the temptation of having all this candy in your face (on the kitchen table.) So, take a step back and refocus on the positive.
What can you do to have a healthier Easter holiday?
Take a deep breath and be kind to yourself. You don’t have to get Easter PERFECTLY clear of sugar or chocolate, but you can do three things to create balance.
Focus on these 3 concepts to have a healthier Easter
1. Create more opportunities to eat fruit and vegetables
2. Focus on activities that boost creativity and fitness
3. Set boundaries with well-meaning adults
1. Create more opportunities to eat fruits and vegetables with these 3 healthy alternative Easter treats!
Make breakfast fun with Bunny Tail pancakes!
- Prepare a lighter version of pancakes with added nutritional powders and plant-based milk.
- Allow the kids to decorate with lots of fruit.
- Encourage them to “play” with their food and let it be messy.
- Playing with their food helps them to build a relationship with the textures, tastes, and flavours. They won’t play with their food forever, so let it be uncomfortable and see what happens. Turn up that curiosity
Make pink, blue and yellow-coloured smoothies
Blend these up separately and serve in 3 different tiny cups. If you freeze the fruit, it may be possible to layer them all in one glass by pouring very carefully. Decorate with fun straws and goofy eyeball candy.
- Pink – frozen strawberries + milk of choice
- Blue – butterfly pea flow powder+ banana + milk of choice
- Yellow – frozen pineapple + milk of choice
Keep the marshmallow bunnies and marshmallow eggs, but… add in the fruit! This trick keeps the fun of having a sweet treat AND adds in lots of colourful fruit. I bet your child will eat more of the fruit and less of the marshmallow anyway, but no stress if they only want the bunny.
Start with the red fruits first, then stack in rainbow order leaving the bunny or chick on top. FUN. Here is the order:
- Red grapes
- Green grape
- Honeydew melon
- Marshmallow bunny or chick topper!
Source: Debbie Chapman at OneLittleProject https://onelittleproject.com/easter-peeps-fruit-kabobs/
Serve Fruits, Vegetables and Snacks in Easter Eggs!
- Kids love colours and unique ways to serve and arrange food.
- Get some plastic egg cups and fill them with little hand friendly-sized foods like baby carrots, corn kernels, hummus, peas, tomatoes, or crackers (of course consider choking hazard foods if you have a young child.)
- This is not only whimsical for kids, adults love it too.
- Consider sprinkling colourful confetti in the hummus to encourage kids to try it.
- You can also cut flower shapes into the carrots or cucumber if you have time.
Source: Kara at A Kailo Chic Life https://akailochiclife.com/2012/03/easter-egg-lunc.html
2. Focus on activities that boost creativity and fitness
Instead of focusing on the chocolate and treats, turn on the creativity and get out there and move your body. Here are 3 Easter related themes.
- Easter Egg Hunt – instead of chocolate inside the plastic eggs, place coins in the eggs and have one or two eggs that have paper notes in them for the lucky finder. Place the eggs in places where they need to climb and walk a lot to get them. Allow them to buy their own toy with the money.
Hold the Easter Olympics! Create races with the kids and adults, winner gets a medal or their picture on the Fridge. We love:
- egg and spoon races
- 3-legged races
- longest hoola-hooping
- crab-walk races
Easter Dance Party – Each person or together as a team create a unique family Easter dance. Some ideas to get started is the chicken dance, the macarena and bunny hop and freeze. Just be silly and have fun with it.
3. Set boundaries with adults
Everyone loves to give kids candy and be the favourite. It’s like instant LOVE in a wrapper.
With that said, we need to retrain our family (and ourselves) to give gifts that are supportive, grounding, and meaningful. Help your family to think out of the box and talk to them with plenty of time in advance so they can turn up their own creative juices.
Here are alternative gift ideas for the Easter holiday.
- Little Easter themed stuffed animals
- Quick and short rabbit themed or spring themed books e.g. The Runaway Bunny, Guess How Much I Love You, and Peppa Pig’s Easter Hunt.
- Fancy Easter clothing (I loved getting new shoes or a hair ribbon on Easter)
- A cute t-shirt that could be worn all summer
- Coupon for play date with that person (It can be a coupon to go to a movie, the library and read together, play in the park, go to a special place or even just a bike ride together.)
The point is, BE DIFFERENT.
Be kind to yourself.
Life in 2022 is already a 3-ring circus.
Get clear on what you truly want for your family.
And start with what lights you up and brings YOU joy.
We need to do it for ourselves.
Sending warm spring vibes.