Monday, April 5, 2010

eggs and easter

Easter is the holiday I have most looked forward to celebrating with my kids.  Let me be so bold as to say, easter is one of the reasons I wanted to have kids.  Not having grown up in a religious family (and therefore not having celebrated the, er, resurrection of Christ--the adult part of the holiday), easter holidays have been significantly lacking in my life for the last 18 years.  Well, ever since mom quit hiding eggs, chocolate and jelly bellies anyway.  

I don't mean to disrespect Christianity; I appreciate the religion and even, on occasion, have envy for the devoutly faithful...but what I love best about easter is how blatantly pagan the whole thing is.  EGGS?  BUNNIES?  Green grass, baskets, frilly sleeveless dresses....
I love that it's a holiday that connects us all back to a celebration of earth and LIFE.  It's a long sigh at the end of winter, Whew, we made it through another one.  It's all about new growth (green grass), procreation (eggs), abundance (breeding like bunny rabbits), hope (Jesus Christ?) and, well, spring.  And I love that those old pagan traditions have hung on through all these hundreds upon hundreds of years.  

While studying abroad in the Czech Republic, I learned this: on Easter, boys buy whips sold around town, then chase down girls and try to whip them lightly on the back of the calf.  If they succeed, the girl has to turn around and hand the boy an egg.  Now tell me, what do you think that's all about?  Uh-huh.  

:: I have been in a crafting frenzy lately.  Mostly, it's all in my head and I don't get the time to act on it.  But I did do this for Juniper: I made her some easter eggs.  We won't need any of those plastic, made-in-china, potentially-toxic easter eggs in our house, thank you.  I blew the dust off my crochet hook, dug out some yarn scraps and went to town.  Turns out, I can whip out an egg while nursing J bug down for the night.  Nifty.  

:: Easter morning.  

:: Juniper's great-grandparents had sent her a little money for easter, so we bought her a REAL basket.  It's a June-bug sized African market basket that will probably last the rest of her life.  Purchased from the fair-trade shop at Missoula's Peace Center.  Can't beat that. 

:: Her dexterity and precise hand-eye coordination improves by leaps and bounds from week to week.  It's so much fun to watch.  

:: J-bug has had some rough teething days lately.  So of course, everything was chewed on.

Aggressively chewed on.

:: Since Juniper is still a strictly breastfed babe, I filled the eggs with something I thought she might enjoy: strips of fabric.  

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