Sunday, April 11, 2004

I'm A Good Egg

Easter's done.

I find this holiday stuff very exhausting. It's not really my thing. My sister loves the holidays. She lovingly decorates her mantels and the front door of her house with bunnies and eggs for Easter. And she does it for every holiday. Even St. Patrick's Day's day has its own stash of do-dads.

I try to summon up some energy for the kids, because I remember how much I liked that stuff as a kid. My mom wasn't much for holiday tchotchkes, but she did everything else for Easter. Always new pajamas. And my sister and I went to church in white stockings and matching pink dresses; my brother had a stiff blue jacket. My mom prepared a traditional feast. My grandmother spent a week baking Italian desserts. Dad was in charge of dying the eggs with us on Saturday night. He always wrote "I'm a good egg" with white crayon on one egg before plopping it in the vinegary dye. On Sunday morning, we would find a basket of chocolates and small toys all artfully arranged for us.

It was the same drill every year, but we always loved it from the crisp PJs to the TV specials to Grandma's glazed apple tarts.

I want to replicate those traditions for my kids. The trouble is that I'm a grumpy old person who would much rather be reading a book on the sofa, than searching Baby Gap for clothes on the sale rack and pillaging Target for basket goodies. It's difficult for me to get excited about the Easter bunny and his mysterious fascination with eggs. If I was single and childless, I would be very content to send out for Chinese food and settle down to the Sunday crossword puzzle. Ah, one can dream.

Despite my cynicism and innate laziness, it all went swimmingly. Took Jonah to an egg hunt in the park on Saturday. And today, the kids woke to find two baskets of treats and playdough and little cars. 10 plastic eggs of M&Ms were hidden in the living room. They went to church in matching Gap sweater vests. It might be terribly bourgeois and predictable, but the kids look forward to it. It's amazing to see how happy they get by a plastic egg filled with pastel M&Ms.

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