Easter Traditions

What are your favorite Easter traditions?

When I think of Easter I think of: egg hunts, Easter baskets with a chocolate bunny (of course), sunrise service, a family meal and delicious food. Its a holiday with lots of tradition and memories.

In recent years, my boys have been hot-and-cold on their stance on Easter Egg Hunts. They are attracted to the hunting for treasure (candy, trinkets, colorful eggs), but don’t like the ‘younger kid’ aspect of it. My oldest came to me and said, “I’m not doing the egg hunt, Mom. It’s for little kids.” To which I replied, “that’s fine.” He seemed a little stunned that I didn’t push back or try to make him engage in the activity. I think he was a little disappointed. There is still a part of him that wants to engage in the activity even though he’s reached the age where he’s just about outgrown it.

There is at line in time, when you start to leave childhood and become a young adult. It makes me a little sad, as I remember going through that time myself–where you start to say goodbye to your childhood in small ways (like not participating in the egg hunt anymore) and start participating in more grown up things (like watching the egg hunt from the crowd)–and how much I wasn’t ready to leave that part of my life behind when I was their age. I hope my children are compiling many good Easter memories that they will look fondly upon as adults, but for now, I’m just fine with taking the holiday one Easter at a time. I don’t need them growing up any faster than they already are.

What Easter traditions do you and your family have? What does your child like most about Easter?

Easter Egg Hunt

My kids have really been looking forward to Easter. While I’d love to say its for the religious significance, its really all about the candy for them. They are looking forward to finding their baskets in the morning and doing an Easter Egg hunt later in the day. Easter to them is a day of seeking and finding big and little treasures.

I’m reminded of an Easter when I was a young child. We were in Florida visiting family and there was an Easter Egg hunt out in a large field. We were told there was one giant egg hidden. We figured this giant egg must be made of chocolate and not a hard boiled one, and all of the kids wanted to find it! I was armed with my Easter basket and ready to go. The countdown began–fivefour-three-two-one—GO! I raced alongside my cousins, sisters and friends across the field.

I found lots of eggs, but few ended up in my basket. My problem while I was great at visually finding them, I wasn’t very fast at picking them up, and the eggs kept getting scooped out from underneath me . I think one of my sisters may have just followed me around to get her bounty! I was good at seeking. She was good at securing! I was very frustrated.

I honestly can’t recall if I got any of those decorated hardboiled eggs. I was so disappointed and thought my empty Easter basket was a reflection on what a poor treasure hunter I was. Easter was supposed to be fun, an easy way to get candy, an easy day to feel good about plants blooming, the weather warming and life being good. But I didn’t feel good.  Embarrassed by my results I sulked over to where some of my older cousins were watching us. I’ll never forget the look on their faces. It wasn’t joy in my failure. It wasn’t a smirk or look of shared disappointment. It was empathy. They were looking at me when one said, “Tricia, you’re getting warmer.” I thought getting warmer? what are they talking about? After a few seconds, I understood. They were talking about the Giant Egg!  I walked a few steps forward. “You’re getting warmer,” they said again. I moved forward again, “colder,” I readjusted and went to the right, “warmer,” one more step, “hot!” I lifted a palmetto branch and lo and behold there was the giant egg!  Success, joy and overall happiness came pouring back in.

My cousins never let on that they helped me find the giant egg. Most people at the hunt hadn’t seen what happened. I was asked afterwards, “how did you know it was there?” and “what made you think to look under that palmetto bush, there are so many of them out here?” I just smiled and looked over, ever so subtly at my older cousins. They had my back. They felt for me and wanted me to have success. They encouraged me. But maybe what was most significant about their act was that they loved me. It was a simple gesture, but very powerful. I felt like the richest person there.

What treasures are you seeking this Easter? What treasures are you hoping your children will find?