Improvising Easter

Saturday, April 23, 2011

I grew up in a staunchly Catholic family, so my childhood memories of Easter are of big, joyous family meals with all my aunts and uncles and cousins packed into my Grandma & Grandpa's cute little house.  The day really got started once Grandpa drove 6 blocks to bring Great Grams to preside over the whole thing.

When Grandpa passed away, it all stopped.  That's how I learned my quiet, sentimental Grandpa was the driving force behind those big family gatherings that made the best memories of my childhood. Turns out, Grandma didn't really like to cook.

Now we've got to decide how to do this for Bear, and it's not easy.  And not just because we live hours from our families.  I still respect the holidays I was raised to observe, regardless of my atheism.  I always assumed we'd decide how to celebrate them for Bear in our own time, in our own way. 

What kids see.
We weren't even going to bother with the Easter Bunny this year.  (Or any year, really, if we could avoid it.)  I figured a quiet brunch and some quality time with his grandparents would be a lovely way to spend the holiday.
What I didn't count on was other people.  Seriously, what is it with adults that they can't resist asking a small child if they are going to an Easter Egg Hunt and/or if the Easter Bunny is going to bring them candy?! 

And while I'm on the subject.... what is it with Americans' inexplicable need to scare the bejeezus out of our kids with holiday costumes?


It was bad enough at Christmas with people incessantly asking Bear when he was going to visit Santa. (Uuuuum, no. If you wanna take my antisocial SPD kid to the mall to stand in a long line of spoiled brats with deafening carols piped in to complement the blinding bedecking of the hallowed retail halls, go for it.  Just let me get some popcorn and a good seat to watch the show. )

Since my feelings about Easter are much more in line with its Pagan origins, that's where we started with Bear.  We talked about how it's getting warm because winter is done, and how much we like the flowers and trees growing again.  Then I told him Easter is a celebration (which he decided means "having a party") of how happy we are that it's springtime.

WTF does Spongebob have to do with Easter?

I threw in the Easter Bunny as an aside,  that he's a little bit like Santa Claus and sometimes brings a present.

Since I could barely get my act together enough to deal with making brunch tomorrow, there was no way I was going to manufacture an Easter basket.  Not that the OCD people who live in my head would allow a pile of cheap candy, messy plastic grass and Made In China bunny-themed tchotchkes in the house anyway.

A few months ago I paired a coupon with a great sale and scored a big pile of wooden train accessories we've been using as rewards for months.  Been saving the roundhouse because even the cheap generic one is still a pretty big gift, wasn't sure when it would be right to give it to him.

Which is to say, I guess the Easter Bunny is bringing a roundhouse.  Hope it fits in his basket.