Who doesn't love Spring? I think it's the most universally enjoyed of all the seasons. Even here in California where the seasons are not as defined, the blooming of the trees and flowers is the most enjoyable time of the year. One of the best parts of Spring is Easter. Landon's literally been looking forward to it since Christmas was over and I don't blame him. Easter was always a great time of year for me when I was a kid and I've tried to make it just as enjoyable for him. While I always try to enforce the true reason behind religious holiday's, I have no problem letting my kid enjoy all the non-religious aspects of it too.
I felt a little late to the game this year as it wasn't until the week before Easter that we started thinking about it. That's the weekend we got the decorations. We don't have a lot of Easter decorations, but we do have a lot of plastic eggs. I just pull them out and set them up around the house. It's a small, but festive way to decorate.
Landon took some and decorated his own room...
I put out our Easter pictures in our picture collages. I've been rotating pictures in these 5 frames for years now. I do it for holidays, special occasions, and visitors. Now that Landon is 5, I need more frames to share one picture from every year. I think I might work on a doing an entire gallery wall of exchangeable pictures. It's become a great tradition and it allows us to enjoy even more of our pictures from years gone by.
Next we decorated an Easter tree. I used to do this when I was little, but this was the first year we've done it. Landon loved it so we will be sure to add it to the list of traditions! Take some cheap ornaments from World Market and some branches from Trader Joe's and you have Easter decoration at it's best!
Monday, we decorated eggs together as a family. Landon of course loves this as well and it was amazing to see how much better he was than last year.
We got the metallic paint eggs, because Landon is all about coloring and painting right now. So after we dyed them the boys went to work hard on painting their masterpieces.
They were actually really pretty and added another fun element to the traditional dying of eggs.
Although Easter eggs are a fun craft, eventually we have to throw them away. We put them in a bowl to enjoy them while they last.
I like decorating each holiday with a piece of art that Landon made the year before. This usually comes from stuff he does at school, but this year I got a few things from the Target $1 bin. Tuesday night, Landon worked on painting a bunny and an egg and now we can enjoy these for many, many years to come.
Wednesday, his best buddy Haoyu came over for a play date. Landon had been telling him all about dying Easter Eggs and he wanted to do some too. They were really excited!
Landon loved showing him exactly how to put the eggs into the cups and spin them around so they were completely covered. I made sure to have plenty of eggs and dyes because the last thing I wanted was two children fighting over cups of colored vinegar.
They did great though and after we dyed them I brought out stickers and markers and paint and just let them have a field day adding more decorations of their choice.
It shouldn't come as a surprise that many of the eggs ended up looking like this. These boys love anything superhero.
Once the chocolate was melted, Landon (with a little help from Mom) put the chocolate in the molds. When we ran out of the green, we did pink, and then white. He loved it, but putting them in the freezer and waiting for them to harden up was pure torture for the little guy.
After a bit in the freezer, it was time to pull them out and marvel at our masterpieces. He especially loved the fact that we made our own homemade chocolate lollipops.
Then just for fun, I let him decorate the bunnies. Now I have three tupperware bins in my fridge of chocolates. Hopefully they will last awhile, because it's going to take him a long, long time to eat them all.
Before bed, he collected all the plastic eggs around the house and put them in his Easter basket for the Easter bunny. He decided that like Santa, the Easter bunny should get a treat so he left him a few of his prized chocolates. He also wrote him a note that was supposed to say "I will listen to the Easter Bunny", but somehow he never finished the word Easter or bunny. Listening is a big thing in our house right now, so all week we hung the Easter bunny over his head for good behavior. He wanted the Easter Bunny to be sure to know he would continue to listen.
He must have done a good job listening, because the next morning he woke up to a full basket.
Landon not being able to hunt Easter eggs outside really made me hate living in an apartment. We talked about one of us trying to go to a park to hide them and the other bringing him bu right after, but when you live in an area with 8 million other people, that just isn't easy. Reluctantly, we hid them all around the apartment and I know he didn't care, but it still broke my heart a little. Easter eggs should be hidden in flower pots and trees, not in bookcases. It didn't take him anytime to find all the eggs, then he opened all the eggs and spread out all his goodies.
After that basket, he had another basket from Grandma to open. Spoiled much?
Of course, he got a lot of candy, but also a lot of coloring stuff. He spent the next few hours coloring and drawing and trying to convince us to let him have another piece of candy. He's going to be eating candy until next Easter. We actually threw away the remaining items in his Halloween basket so he could store all his new candy. He had so much new yummy stuff, he didn't even mind.
But despite the candy overload, we had to finish our baking so after a few hours of coloring we made cookies.
The only good part about not having family around on holidays is not having to cook or eat big meals. It's a love/hate thing to spend all day in the kitchen cooking meals. While I miss a big spread at Thanksgiving or Christmas, I don't miss the cooking part. Landon and I spent a few hours in the kitchen on Easter, but it was doing fun stuff like decorating some awesome sugar cookies.
I gave up trying to be fancy and make my own icing last year. Now, I just buy a few bottles and we both go to town. It might not be the prettiest, but I guarantee they are delicious and we have a ton of fun doing it.
We have more sweets in our house right now than we ever have. So if anyone wants to come by for all you can eat candy, chocolate, or cookies, please do me a favor and assist us in getting these out of my house!
When we were done baking, we cleaned up and went to church. Normally, we would have gone first thing in the morning, but we decided to wait and go to 5:30 mass. I missed the more traditional morning mass and choir, but the crowds were so much less which was really nice.
By Easter night, our tree was in full bloom. It seemed fitting that after a week the buds had blossomed and showed themselves full of life on the very day that we celebrate the most joyous life of all, the eternal life. Easter is a joyous holiday and although much of it is beyond Landon's understanding I am glad we were able to teach him the love, celebration, and yes even fun that comes along with this special day.