Spring is Hell on Earth for all Parents

by | Mar 29, 2022 | Contributed Post

Good parents take their kids outside, showing them proudly to the sun as if they were little flowers needing UVB and UVA and all the other UVs available for photosynthesis. The only problem with kids is that they are nothing like flowers. You would probably have a quiet day out if you took the potted geranium for a picnic.

But, good parents don’t take houseplants for a picnic in the park. Good parents wait until the warm weather comes back to take their kids for a picnic adventure in the open. They wait eagerly for the spring fairy to paint blushing colors on the bushes and open a birds’ music band underneath their windows at sunrise. And tada, welcome to spring!

Note, it’s not that you or your kids are dead set on a picnic outside. There are so many more exciting things to do. Yet, you feel the silent and invisible burden on your shoulders. This is what we call social expectations. All the other parents are doing it anyway, so it’s not like you’ve got any choice in the matter.

But what is it about picnics in the park that makes the whole experience so challenging?

boy on swing

Photo by Johnny Cohen on Unsplash

The unavoidable sunscreen fight

Put on some sunscreen protection, you say. 

And your younger one looks at you with two incredulous eyes. Protection? Against the sun? What for, they say, it’s not even summer yet. 

You consider your counterargument carefully. But there’s no need. You know that season does not matter. Sunscreen is a must for prolonged sun exposure. But for most kids, plastering oneself with the milky white SPF50 is only for pool or beach days. And let’s be honest, they’re in the middle of a city park, wearing a denim jacket, long jeans, and a pair of cute little Pokemon shoes. They know they are not going to the beach. So they vehemently reject the sunscreen lotion. But don’t retreat too early yet! The war is not completely lost. You can still convince them to wear sturdy and cute hats for kids, so at least they can enjoy a stylish sun shield. Dare we say: Opt for something that is literally indestructible because kids have the superb ability to break the unbreakable just by sneezing in front of it. 

Photo by Kate Hliznitsova on Unsplash

The dullness of a park lunch

What is the best food to bring on a park picnic? Let’s keep things simple, manageable, and, more importantly, tear-free. If you are dreaming of a glorious picnic basket with fresh ingredients, cream and strawberry, and a glass of champagne, well, sorry to put it so bluntly, but that’s going to be a nope. Instead, seek comfort in the dullness of a typical parent-made picnic lunch:

  • Small pieces of fresh fruits and vegetables, completely bland and kept inside a Tupperware box. If stains terrify you, you should probably avoid cherry tomatoes. 
  • Small bland sandwiches with bread, cheese, ham, eventually a thin leaf of lettuce if you are feeling adventurous. 
  • Protein of some munchable form for tiny hands; this includes boiled eggs, ham, chicken, etc. 
  • Something sweet as a reward for picky eaters: Yes, a cookie or a cupcake is a good plan if you’re planning a long park break. 

The sun is out. So, let’s go to the park. Sure, the experience can be challenging at first with little ones. But it can only get better as you both get used to it!


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