We have had more fun this weekend enjoying Easter themed activities together. It is so easy and requires very little additional effort to Google local events in your own area. But, if your family is more home-oriented, or you have guests in town, there are several at-home activities to choose from as well. Whether you choose local or home events this Holiday season, just be sure to include fun Easter celebrations for the family as a whole, in addition to activities geared towards different age groups. Do not forget that this weekend is for everyone’s enjoyment and spiritual well-being.
Our family tries to enjoy a family weekend like Easter by focusing on different family members every day. For example, on Good Friday, we did a Mom & Dad activity; we visited the Tacoma Glass Museum which was an outing that us parents have wanted to do for months. The girls got to see some very colorful art while Mom and Dad appreciated some beautiful works.
On Holy Saturday, we visited a local farm. Our toddler enjoyed the petting zoo and an Easter Egg hunt. She got so tickled watching other children feed the scavenging mouths of goats and sheep, and she every-so-gently pet a baby rabbit, and gleefully pointed to and mimicked the sounds of the farm piglets. The whole family enjoyed the outing. There were vendors selling baked goods and bar-b-q for lunch time. The egg hunt itself was much-awaited and unfortunately ended far too quickly. The hunt was set up exceptionally well, with different fields roped off for different age groups, and all the hunts were scheduled to begin at the same time (which I imagine may have been a difficulty for other parents with children in different age groups; I personally, would not want to miss out on watching my children egg-hunt).
However, please take the following story to heart and do not be this parent on Easter Sunday in front of your family, friends and neighbors. Though signs clearly said “No parents” in the hunting area (unless your child really needed assistance), in my toddler’s corral (walking – two years), the parents were literally trampling children trying to gather up dozens of eggs into huge plastic buckets; their toddlers could not even focus on any one egg before their own parent snatched up the egg. It was so sad to see the egg event unravel because it was over in seconds. Parents walked out with huge buckets brimming with eggs, while other children who followed the rules were left with a meager sampling or none at all. We brought a relatively small basket for our daughter because we were having an egg hunt at home on Sunday and she does not need too much candy. To avoid the crushing wave, I purposely picked her up and walked her to the center of the field (while her Dad and baby sister had to wait on the sidelines because they couldn’t get through), all the while being jostled by hustling parents around us, and got her to an empty (of people) patch of grass where she could stand and bend down to inspect the nearby plastic eggs at her leisure.
She had so much fun picking them up and dropping them in her basket. She didn’t even realize there was candy hidden away inside! When she discovered that fact, she actually dumped all the candy out and just wanted the plastic eggs to go on playing. Since the fun was so short-lived, we let her roam the fields from the other age-groups egg hunts and she picked up emptied egg shells and placed them happily in her basket. We let her do this until we had walked across the field entirely. It felt nice to help the hosts clean up their fields.
After the fun day out, we dyed Easter eggs at home and tried out different coloring techniques, crayons, etc. The toddler loved this activity, and her baby sister got so tickled watching the revelry. Here’s a tip for parents, put down some towels, smock the kids, and wear an apron for yourself. Let them spill water, give them spoons to dip and pour with, and just give in to the fun for a half hour. Have some wet towels ready to mop up any colored-water that might land on your counters, furniture or floors, and you should be good to go!
Next, we baked a lamb cake. This is a family tradition for my husband and one that he has greatly missed over the years of being in service and always away from family around Easter. We bought the cake pan a few years back but had not used it yet until this year. Here is a tip for parents, bake the cake the previous night while the kids are asleep so you can follow the instructions exactly; 3-D cakes are easy, but require focus and attention to detail. Let the cake cool overnight and then it is ready for decorating the next day! This helps to avoid outbursts by the tiny, impatient ones in your household! Our toddler had more fun icing (and eating) the lamb cake. She was not quite sure about the coconut shavings at first but she quickly saw how much fun it added to the decorations.
On Easter Sunday, we will have a simple family breakfast, a fun Easter egg hunt, and attend Easter Mass. What a glorious, lovely way to spend a weekend together as a family.