Friday, April 10, 2009

Good Eggs

Easter is another of those good American commercialized holidays that we've stubbornly chosen to abstain from...well, that commercialized part, anyways. Of course, we DO celebrate Christ's resurrection as payment for our sins...we just don't feel that it warrants a basket filled with egg & bunny themed gifts.

How did THAT happen, anyway?

Aaron and I were reminiscing about our own Easter experiences growing up. His family primarily stuck to the religious side, but my family embraced the secular as well as the religious. Every Easter morning we started out having to locate our Easter baskets. These were regular baskets, turned for one glorious weekend into the receptacle for oodles of candies. We didn't need no stinkin' pink or yellow contraption, although we DID fill the bottoms with that second most terrifying material (behind Christmas tree tinsel), artificial Easter grass. That junk NEVER goes away, and come July is a subtle reminder of that morning spent getting primped and gorging on candy - a truly ideal combination.

Anyway. After finding our baskets, the four of us kids would eagerly wait at the door from the kitchen to the living/dining room. This was about the one or so days a year that door was actually used, and OH did it get it's moment in the sun! Finally Mom and Dad would decide that there had been enough anticipation, and would let us loose.

Our house was filled with ledges and nooks & crannies - perfect for the jelly beans, chocolate foil-wrapped eggs, and malted eggs that the folks would hide all over. And they weren't necessarily easy to find, either. One year we decided to be retro and hide some REAL eggs ....yeah. One wasn't found until a month or so later. NOT a plan that got repeated! (Although at the same time, nothing too devastating happened, either. Sorry to disappoint.)

My favorite hiding spot had a rather fortunate set up. The evening before Easter, I had absent-mindedly been playing with a black velvet ribbon, about an inch and a half wide. Just before bed I had laid it over the black keys on our piano. The next morning, during the candy hunt, I saw it was still there and picked it up. And lo and behold! between every black key there was a jelly bean. I greedily swept them into my basket as quickly as I could to avoid attracting the attention from the siblings. Ah, sweet Easter memories.

Never at any point in my childhood was my Easter basket discovered already filled with TOYS. This is a serious shopping occasion now, it seems. There are all kinds of items marketed especially for those baskets, and some parents spend a considerable amount of time debating what to put in them - although fortunately most seems to stick with bubbles and sidewalk chalk type things. Maybe one reason for my apathy to this aspect is that Ben's birthday is so close to Easter - having to fill a basket AND get birthday presents is just too much pressure.

With our own kids, we choose not to do fun things.

Just kidding.

Kind of. We don't have Easter baskets at all, although jelly beans and Easter candy is definitely around. I haven't banned Easter egg hunts the way I have Halloween parties. In fact, we went to an egg hunt this morning, for my MOMS Club kids. THIS hunt involved plastic eggs filled with mostly non-candy items like stickers and erasers. And the "hiding" of the eggs was done so as to not be frustrating for an 18-month old child...Do you have that picture in your head? Ben "found" his share in the kitchen...all lined up under the cupboards. So the "hunt" part was kind of played down, but the fun of opening the eggs made up for it. What did Leah & Ben put their eggs IN, if they have no baskets, you ask? I gave them small brown lunch sacks and let them decorate them with markers and Easter stickers. Mission accomplished.


Ruth said...

gah. the best part of easter was each of us getting ONE cadburry cream egg. i will say that we probably snitched jellybeans or maybe a robins egg or two from each other's baskets, but never the cream egg. too sacred.

Blue Castle said...

My mom used to have an Easter basket waiting for my sister and I, on Easter morning. We always got a new dress too. But, now, we pretty much don't celebrate Easter - for the reasons you mentioned - we do celebrate the Resurrection, though. Just not with bunnies and eggs. I do usually try to have a new outfit to wear for myself and have the boys dressed nicely in their suits and ties. That's pretty much the only holdover from my childhood, though.

I like your sensible approach to the holiday, Lyz. It's amazing how much stuff is marketed to kids now for Easter. It's going to be the second Christmas.

Suzi said...

bah humbug!

How can you celebrate Easter without buying a gigantic basket filled with too many toys? :)

I'm trying to stay simple although we will do an egg hunt. But inside the eggs will be coins or those little capsules that you put into water and they expand into animals. And there will probably be less than 20 eggs too, I'm too lazy for too much more.

In their baskets will be the dreaded green grass (ugh), these cool marshmallow animals on a stick (their only candy) and one of those punching bag balloons. Boy that sounds kinda pathetic. Maybe I'll dig thru my existing stuffed bunny collection and stick one in each basket too, so it's not so empty.

I'd like to start the Cadbury Cream Egg tradition, oh those are yummy, but I didn't get them this year, maybe next...

Happy Easter Lyz.