St. Patrick's Day may have been known to the college version of you as a day of bar-hopping, but now that you're a parent, it's so not much about the green beer. Kids have a way of changing everything, including how we celebrate St. Patrick's Day. Celebrating the luck of the Irish with your kids can be more fun than you ever imagined. Just get creative — and buy some green food coloring.

Surprises

Leprechaun Trail. Bring some luck of the Irish into your home before the kids wake up. Leave a trail of green or gold dust (glitter or confetti) down the hallway to hidden treasures around your house like chocolate gold coins, real coins, or four leaf clovers. Let the trail lead right out your front door where it mysteriously disappears.

Bath Time Treasure Hunt. Turn bath time into a St. Patrick's Day treasure hunt. Drop a bit of green food coloring into the water, add some fake green grass, and let the kids go crazy looking for treasures in the water like gold coins, green beaded necklaces, and shamrocks.

Crafts

Leprachuan Trap. If captured, a Leprechaun has to take you to his pot of gold. It's totally a rule. Follow these directions to catch your own Leprachaun courtesy of Stacy Molter.

Make Your Own Leprechaun Beards. You can stick with orange construction paper to cut out a simple Leprechaun beard with holes punched on either side for a string. Or you get even more creative by making this beard (designed by Green Owl Crafts by Amanda) out of orange yarn, pipe cleaner and a hat from the Dollar Store.

Treats

Green Lemonade. Or green milk or green pancakes. With a bit of green food coloring, you can turn just about any of your child's favorites into a treat created just for her for St. Patrick's Day. It's super fun for everyone and may just inspire your picky eater to finish her food.

Leprechaun Lunch. Take meal time a step further by creating a special lunch complete with a pot of gold, and Leprechaun shaped sandwich using carrots for his hair and beard.

Fruit Rainbow. This one is a piece of cake — I mean, fruit. Sliced apples, oranges, pears, bananas, grapes, and more can all combine to create a fun and healthy rainbow with a pot of gold at the end. The perfect snack for St. Patrick's Day is also a great way to get some fruit into those little bellies.

Mint-Chocolate Chip Cookies. I saved my personal favorite for last. Mint-chocolate chip cookies mix the magic of Leprechauns with a classic, favorite treat. This simple recipe from Mom On Timeout uses a Betty Crocker mix and creme de menth baking chips to create an amazing combination. (Hide some for yourself for when the kids go to bed.)

St. Patrick's Day gives us the perfect excuse to spend some quality time with the kids, get creative, and eat lots of yummy albeit green food. No matter how old your children are, they are sure to get a kick out of anything you do to celebrate the day.