Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Easter Traditions

My family is fairly small.  Besides my parents (now in their late 80s), I have two younger sisters.  My next youngest sister has two children - a son and a daughter.  Her son is in Florida and her daughter lives near her in New Hampshire and has a son.  My youngest sister has one son, who is about to graduate from college and will be living near/with her in NYC.  I have dogs.  It is a rare holiday that we ALL get together and this Easter isn't one of them.  Due to the many complicated maneuverings that seem to plague today's families, there are many changes before everything is firmed up.  Right now, there will be my parents, me, and my NH sister.  That may change to include her daughter and grandson.  Or not.  What we can bet on is that there will be an Easter egg hunt.  No matter how old we are, there is ALWAYS an egg hunt.  And these are not your ordinary egg hunts.  My parents have diabolical minds which have only slightly lessened in intensity.  Bwwwaahaha.

We, the adult children, are given two small pieces of paper, on which are written (neatly, by hand) clues.  The clues, over the years, have dealt with the Ottoman Empire, historical figures, wacky British humor, math (ack), great literary works - the subjects are limitless.  These days, while the clues are less complicated, they are still devilish hard.  My parents work as a tag team - my mother chooses the hiding places and my father develops the clues.  He missed his calling -- the CIA could have used him. 

This method of torture was not limited to Easter.  I vividly remember, on my 21st birthday, many moons ago, having to work my way through no less than 8 clues, one more complicated than the other, to find my birthday present.  Being the patient young person that I was (ahem), by the time I reached the end, I had a crowbar in hand, intent on ripping off the trunk of their car.  You see, my birthday is in January and my coveted present -- a brand new Singer sewing machine!!!! -- was in the trunk of their car.  The trunk lock was, not surprisingly, frozen.  Cooler heads prevailed, the trunk was opened, and I was united with my sewing machine.

At least the egg hunt will be held indoors.  And while my father's clues are a little shakier on the makes-sense scale, our powers of deduction are a little more blunted as well.  I only wish that they'd bring back our Easter baskets -- I need lots of chocolate after all that brainwork!


  1. What fun to read about; I hope you have a blast!

  2. Dee-lightful tradition in your family! We've, only in the last few years, stopped coloring and hiding Easter eggs for our little one (age 39-1/2) to find. And the only reason that tradition ended was because the Big Easter Bunny (me) refused to dye said Easter eggs that were hidden. (Always hated that job!) But we still make our daughter an Easter basket. And the little sweetie fills one for both her mom and pop in return. Not much candy in them any more. It's more likely to be a small kitchen gadget or pocket flashlight or bottle of hand cream, etc. Still and all, it lends a traditional family pleasure to the holiday.


  4. This is so cool! I think it's great to have these family traditions, no matter how wacky they sometimes seem :)

  5. Okay, m'dear, this is my TEST COMMENT. In my first comment that has apparently disappeared into thin Internet air, I blathered on and on and on and on about our own Easter traditions. So much so that it would be too much to repeat again. (Such a loss to the literary world.)

  6. Thanks, Michelle - we usually have a ball, no matter how much I whine.

    Mama Pea - thank you for leading me to the solution of the disappearing comments! I am all for the basket in lieu of the eggs. Guess who gets to dye the eggs every year? This year I had my own little white egg layers, so I've been hoarding their eggs. I'm going with natural dyes. I'm sure I'll be cursing my way through the process. ;o)

    Judy - I bet you would have your hands full! It is so much fun to watch little tots hunt for eggs.

    Erin - I bet your two boys would find every egg before any of us grown-ups!

  7. last years egg hunt went better-provably because it was at my house this year i had no control so it was so-so-if i had the know how or had my daughter here this moment -she could post the pictures ghat are on my face-book. still al and all the kiddies had a blast

  8. and after reading that -I think I need to return to grammar school