Monday, March 24

Feel Free to Explain it to Me

I found myself really struggling with something this Easter: Why? Seriously--why? Of course I understand the reason for the holiday, but how did it turn into the massive commercial thing it is now? Why do parents feel the need to drop buckets of cash on Easter gifts? Since when did Jesus die so that kids could get new bikes? Or DVDs? Or stuffed bunnies? Or whatever random toys the stores claim that we are supposed to buy our kids for Easter? And why do people who aren't Christians celebrate it? I'm all for a cute bunny hopping around and hiding a few eggs while we spend time with our families, but I don't get how it has anything to do with Easter. I'm very confused about the whole thing.

Anyway, I had zero plans for putting together an Easter basket for Alexis. I figured she really wouldn't care since she's not old enough to know the difference. However, Mr. Husband thought I was a communist for even thinking about skipping out on a basket of crap, so we ran to Target on Saturday and picked up a few things. As in, she got about $20 worth of candy and Play-Doh. That's all. Somehow, I feel like it was plenty.

I'm not totally a non-conformist; Alexis and I did spend about an hour dying eggs. Well, actually she told me what color to use and I died the eggs because it's probably the last time she's going to let me help with that little project in any way. I figured I might as well enjoy it.

Of course Dora managed to invade Easter. I owe that pleasure to the one and only Anglophile Football Fanatic. Oh, and why yes, Alexis did manage to smother an egg with an entire sheet of Dora stickers.

Yummmmm . . . eggs!


  1. You and I. We could be good friends.

    I agree 100%. My kids got a basket full of jelly beans, chocolate, and some small boxes of Legos. A grand total of 17.00 per child.

    Enough. They have so much.

    My daughter did notice the upbeat music in church and yelled, YELLED out loud, "JESUS IS ALIVE." Yes, I peed my pants. I could not stop laughing! That is what it is all about. :)

  2. Oh, my sweet. We have eggs and bunnies at Eastertime because the Christians purloined the spring solstace celebration from the heathens.

    Before Easter was about the resurection it was about fertility, new life, rebirth. Eggs and shagging like bunnies. Seriously.

    And I celebrate it, as a non-Christian, because it's become acceptable for secularists to celebrate both Christmas and Easter, and also because any holiday that encourages the partaking of Chocolate is one I must be in on.


  3. Heh. I spent ten bucks. On all four of us. I'm bad like that.

    I had the same thoughts when a friend was telling me everything she bought her girls. I was thinking, "Uh, that's more than I spend on Christmas." Nick got a car, a small amount of candy that he hasn't eaten and Parker got a frog for the tub. I bought Josh some candy because he likes it. I don't.

    That said... we forgot to dye eggs. I am awful.

  4. I think you did great! I don't mind having egg hunt and a basket...but that is really all it needs to be. Didn't I just dump a saving account worth of money on Christmas presents? Ashlyn got a Jasmine princess doll and some candy. That is it. If I over do it on Easter....there is no where to go but up....gotta start small. Okay, now I'm rambling. Sorry!

    Looks like you had fun with the eggs!

  5. Good luck getting THAT egg cracked open.

    I have unsubscribed to the commercialism of holidays many years ago. My kids? Got one chocolate peanut butter eggs and a handful of Hershey Kisses. In addition I've given each kid one or two things just for them. Small things - like bubbles, a magnifying glass, lizard food (haha!) and a clearance rack swim suit.

  6. Hardboiled eggs totally make me shudder. Fun fact for you.

    Oh, and your response to my post mentioning J-Lo really cracked me up. (No egg pun intended withh the cracking, but I will amuse myself and take credit for it nevertheless.)

  7. Anonymous9:41 PM

    I'm with you 100%. I'm all for easter baskets with a few eggs and some candy. But video games? Bikes? Clothes? Huh? Madness, I tell you.

  8. I admit, I went crazy on candy this year. But, part of that is because I was buying for me. Sad, I know. When I started preparing the baskets, I was shocked at how many bags of candy I'd bought. I got a little stuffed animal instead of the chocolate Easter Bunny because I figured they were getting enough chocolate, then Diva started talking about the chocolate bunny she would be getting. So back to the store Hubby went. What I didn't realize he was going to do was buy little gifts. But he got Enchanted which we would have bought anyway and a video game for MA which again, we would have got anyway and a little book for Peanut. Can never have enough books. I do agree that commercialism has taken over, but I'm not giving up my basket and Reeses Peanut Butter eggs. Hmm, gotta go, I hear them calling!

  9. I went crazy...I admit. Cooper got a Jesus Easter book, a little watering can for the tub, teething ring, squishy car and a handful of Hersey kisses that I will help him with since he lacks teeth. Gavin got a couple of little Cars cars (keeps him quiet in church) and these weird transformer-type egg-into-animal-or dino toys...99-cents at the Safeway. oh, and some Hersey kisses that I will help him with, too, because, well, he doesn't need sugar. Including the cheap-o plastic baskets, I might've spent $10 or $12.
    I'm too cheap, and I get ridiculous Protestant guilt that is like bad understated Catholic guilt. Case in point...I cry nearly every time we sing "Because He Lives" or "The Old Rugged Cross". No friggin' joke.

  10. I'm glad to know I'm not the only one that feels that way. I look at all of the candy Hope got this year and I can just see the cavities forming as we speak.

    What could one girl do with all that candy. I have to admit we did playdoh, too.

  11. I couldn't agree more. $20 is plenty in my book too. We reused her basket from last year and spent $8 at the dollar store for goodies we know she'll be sick of in a week whether it was $1 or $20 a piece. Apparently her grandma didn't think it was enough and sent her a huge basket.

    I love her eating the egg!!! :)

  12. Anonymous10:39 PM

    Phase One is complete.....rubs hands together.

    You know I went overboard, right? :) What with there being a b-day party involved.

  13. The stickers are brilliant!

  14. Yep, re-used baskets get put out each year and only a few things end up inside. I just don't get the piles and piles of toys and 'stuff' - why?

    LOL -- my son got play-doh too. He is 6 and still loves creating. Most older kids want so much and he was thrilled to see that the Easter Bunny left him what most would consider a measly amount of treats outside his bedroom door. Sure, he got a bit more at Daddy's, but this is year 1 of mommy and daddy being apart. A Bunny visit at each house would only be normal.

    The massive commercialism of Christmas drives me batty each and every year!

  15. Aw, I love the Dora stickers. AFF done good!

  16. So far I've been lucky and OTHER PEOPLE have bought my kids Easter crap for the past 5 years... :)

  17. I completely agree with you. One of the boys on the street got Guitar Hero and a Green Machine, from the FREAKIN EASTER BUNNY?!?!
    I buy small trinkets of crap and my girls are thrilled. The splurge is a Webkinz and they totally think the Bunny rocks!

  18. Wonder if Dora is planning on running for President?

    That chicky poo is EVERYWHERE!!

    Love the last pic...

    Hallie :)

  19. Anonymous8:37 AM

    Morgan got a $25 tricycle. It's cute, it's rugged (for $25) and it's entertained her long enough for me to mop all floors, do two loads of laundry, empty the dishwasher AND take a shower.

    I told all Easter bunnies there would be very little to no candy this year. She doesn't need it, *I* don't need it and...well, that was it. Other Easter bunnies in the family gave her spring/summer clothes, a couple of books, a stuffed bunny or three and that was it.

    I just don't get WHY Easter has become a second Christmas to some. But, glad to know I'm not the only one that feels that way.

  20. Jonny's Mommy9:28 AM

    I can tell you what it is. It is called money and people can exploit Easter Bunnies without a conscience, much more so than exploiting Jesus and his image.

    I've always asked myself how this stupid thing with the bunny came about.

    I know what the white is about and the lamb -- Jesus was the sacrificial lamb. But the bunny? What the heck.

    I've vowed to keep the real reason of the holiday alive in our house and to our son. I may give him some candy, but I will not focus on the Easter bunny as some "second god" like others seem to do.

  21. Anonymous9:31 AM

    "Oh, my sweet. We have eggs and bunnies at Eastertime because the Christians purloined the spring solstace celebration from the heathens."

    Well, sweets it just so happened Jesus died around this time and rose again and it was the heathens who decided when we would recognize his death and resurrection. And what does eggs and bunnies have to do with stinking spring solstace anyhow? Screwing like bunnies? real nice sentiment there.

  22. Here's one for you...I took Dylan over just barely close to the ridiculous Easter Bunny dude at the mall and after about 2.2 seconds of staring in horror, he frantically signed ALL DONE! If he knew the sign for "What the hell?" I'm sure that is what he would have been signing.

  23. I think it's just like anything else, you make it what you want it to be.

    We have never taught our children that the Easter Bunny or Santa are wrong. We just explain that we are going to celebrate the birth and resurrection of Jesus and that's it.

    Their grandparents go overboard with the holidays, and we have even had to ask them to pull back. Seriously, how many pairs of pajamas does a 3 year old need? Mine got 9 new pair for Christmas, plus 4 new pair for Easter.

    We just ask them to send their gifts to us ahead of time and we pare down accordingly. I put some gifts away for later in the year.

    I'm not opposed to gift giving or candy or make-believe. But when those things far supersede the more important reason for the holiday, it's time to reevaluate!

  24. Ok, you asked for it:

    The word "Easter" comes from the ancient word "eastre" for "Spring," which may have originated from the Great Mother Goddess Estre of the northern saxon people of Europe. She was their goddess of fertility. Eggs and bunnies were used in many ceremonies as they symbolized this fertility. When the Christians were having a hard time getting people to convert to their religion, they adopted many pagan rituals and such in order to better help the people convert. This is why many current Christians refer to Easter as Resurrection Sunday instead, as the resurrection of Jesus has nothing to do with he origins of "Easter."

    I am not Christian but we do "celebrate" easter with our families because they are. We don't go to church, but celebrate Easter as the renewal of life, and all of the wonderful thing spring brings.

    What I love about Easter is that whether you are Christian or not, this holiday can both be celebrated unitarily as the celebration of LIFE - whether it was your Jesus or just Spring. They don't have to be mutually exclusive.

    However, I do agree with you on the over-commercialization of this (and every other) holiday. I can understand dying the eggs (as it came from the offering of eggs to the fertility goddess of spring), but the whole giving gifts thing to me is a bit much. If you're going to celebrate Jesus coming back from the dead, does He really need you to get a new bike or DVD? Then again, isn't that the same concept around Christmas? His birth, His resurrection - are both viewed as something to be celebrated with gifts by Christians.

    And even though I am not Christian, I celebrate these days because it has become a family celebration of life and of their beliefs. And I am cool with that. :)

    Sorry this was so long but you asked!! LOL

    BTW, I love the pics!!!

  25. I'll admit, this year I did go overboard on the Easter basket. But, I did say this would be the best basket I ever made for him! It was his first one. I avoided candy and did put a DVD, a t-shirt, and a few other little things in it. I put about 4 eggs with just a few m&ms in each but that was it. I had fun and his expression when he saw it made my day and made it worth it!
    I am not a mother that buys her kid stuff all the time. He doesn't get something during every trip to the store. I don't want him to grow up thinking he's entitled to things all of the time. I don't want him to think that he'll get something every time he asks. This being said, I don't think it's bad to do a little extra at Easter or Christmas.

    It cracks me up how much your little one is into Dora! I LOVE her egg! My guy is obsessed with Baby Einstein still and I can see Dora and Diego coming through as well. oh no.......I'm screwed!

  26. I don't get it either. I also don't see why we have to stress ourselves out so much to make sure the kids look so perfect at Easter. This year my kids looked nice, but I didn't stress myself about it. I wasn't going to buy a dress that will only get worn once.

    I think I've got you beat on the baskets, though! I spent about $13/child this year. Bubba has wanted a sleeping bag for a really long time and of course whatever Bubba does, Punkin MUST do too. So I went to target and found these precious kits that contained a tent, a backpack, a sleeping bag and a water bottle -- ON SALE for $12 ea. Those and an bag of M&M's made for a happy Easter in my house.

  27. ImpostorMom12:05 PM

    I didn't do a basket or anything because I figure he's too young to really know what's going on right now AND he's had a stomach virus so he can't eat anything I'd put in it anyway.

    I did make my family's traditional bunny cake but on a much, much smaller scale (think cupcake) because again he can't eat any of it. We were going to go hunt eggs on Saturday but there was vomiting involved so overall this second Easter was a bust.

    I never got massive presents as a child and I don't intend to do that for Boog. However, we are not Christians but we do celebrate the secular portions of Christmas and Easter, meaning the bunnies, eggs, trees and big guy in a red suit.

    And in reality these things aren't secular either but rather throwbacks to the original pagan celebrations of the Spring equinox and Winter solstice. In addition our families do celebrate these holidays and we enjoy participating with them as a way to celebrate our families and our ties to tradition.

  28. amanda12:37 PM

    I totally agree with you. But, I like to give other things because the last thing they need is more candy. Their baskets each had practical stuff that they need anyway, like they each got flip flops and sunglasses and then some other random, inexpensive items that can fit into a fairly small basket.

    I did not, however, appreciate my mother-in-law being there and subsequently "out-doing" the Easter Bunny and letting the kids believe that Easter should be like Christmas...

  29. For some families, Easter is the new Christmas when it comes to gifts. I don't know when gift giving on Easter started, but it won't be happening in our house. The kids get baskets with the requisite solid chocolate rabbit and a couple of handfuls of brightly wrapped assorted candies. No gifts. Clearly, they're deprived.

  30. I have a hard time with the comercialization of anything, BUT my love language is strongly in gifts, so sometimes I am at war with myself.
    I decided a long time ago that when I did Easter baskets for my kids, or niece and nephews, they would be practical, and yet in a sneaky way...
    For example, Genny is a girl and loves new clothes, so her Easter basket this year had headbands, bracelets, summer clothes and underwear. I threw in a small chocolate bunny, stickers for her sticker book and a DVD that I would have bought her anyway. She loved it, but I won because she NEEDS summer clothes, NEEDS underwear.... etc.

    I guess it's my attempt at manipulating the system.

  31. I did buy a basket because my mom said she wanted to "hide" plastic eggs in her yard and let the toddlers (yikes! Mine's a toddler now!) "find" them. I put those words in quotes because we just set them all over the yard, not really hiding them.

    So I bought her a basket. But what did I put in it to give it to her? Two little stuffed animals she got sometime in the last year that were sitting on her shelf forgotten. She's too young for candy and dying eggs, so that was it. The plastic eggs in my mom's yard? Empty and none of the toddlers knew the difference.

    Let's see how long I can get away with that! I can't see buying her real gifts for Easter. But imagine the candy in a basket will be coming in a few years.

  32. I'm glad to see that someone else, other than me, actually EATS the eggs! Very cute.

  33. I agree that Easter seems to have gotten a bit out of hand.

    I am very jealous of everyone who has kids and gets to experience all the fun and excitement associated with these holidays. When it's just adults it's really boring and you wind up doing nothing but yard work and eating dinner at 9pm...

  34. Easter is OUT OF CONTROL.

    Amen, sistah to this post. Amen.

  35. me, i don't get it either.

    but then, i'm the jewish kid on the block. there's lotsa stuff i don't get. ;-)

  36. I agree and feel the same way about Christmas, but I can't help but play along at Easter because I'm a sucker for the candy! I have this completely sound theory that candy is of a higher quality at Easter...maybe it's something about pastels, I don't know...

  37. i totally love your views!! i too agree that easter (and EVERY other holiday) is totally out of control. i think the candy and play-do are perfect basket fodder. then she will not expect bike's and dvd's when she gets older!

    thanks for your kind words on my blog as i was trying to dig myself out of abnormality. i think i'm almost there!

  38. I think I spent under $20 for all three of the boys, with most of it being dollar toys. Plus, they have small baskets, so not much fits in them.
    I think everything has turned commercial these days. Seems nothing is sacred.

  39. I didn't even know about this basket thing until I started visiting everyone's blogs on Monday.

    I bought some chocolate eggs, stuffed them in the plastic eggs Little Man got at his school hunt and hid those around the living room.

    Then I got drunk.

    I'm kidding about that last part. But I obviously wished I could have gotten drunk.

    Because a 2.5 year old high on sugar? Way worse than a teenager high on whatever kids are doing these days.

    And when I read the word playdoh in your post, I totally dropped a four-letter word in my cube that rhymes with 'shit' because I totally bought Little Man an Easter playdoh kit at Kohl's and it's still hidden in our front closet.

  40. Well, each of our 3 big kids got one book, one movie and an art set and then candy of course (which mommy eats most of haha). The movies we would have bought anyway so the bunny just gave us a reason... so if you don't count the cost for those, I spent about $10 per kid. We re-use our baskets... those things have gotten CRAZY expensive! Keeghan got 2 sets of peek a blocks but they were already on our gift shelf downstairs... I got them on sale about a year ago for $2.50 each. We didn't dye eggs this year either, I just filled some plastic ones and hid them downstairs in the play room but we definitely focued on the real Reason for Easter... just as we focus on the real Reason for Christmas... though I always seem to go a bit overboard with Christmas shopping! LOL Still, I can't imagine giving a new bike or game system or something like that for Easter... crazy!

  41. I'm with ya. Our Easter buckets, for three kids, were probably about20 bucks for everything. We spent the weekend with family. The chicks and bunnies have nothing to do with the Christian version. And as Christians, we were bad and didn't even attend church. The most crowded day of the year.

  42. WHOA. That Dora-ala-sticker egg is QUITE impressive. I sense artist in the making!


  43. I agree with you 100%!!!!

    I don't spend much on Easter either. Just some candy and some arts and crafts things. Their favorite part is the egg hunt!!!!


  44. We have an egg hunt the day before with the cousins and that's it. If you want to really scare your husband, celebrate May day.

  45. I still haven't participated in the Easter Basket thing with my kids. I was feeling kind of guilty about it, but now I feel relief.

    They did eggs hunts, but we didn't give them a basket (although I really wish I could have picked through their black jelly beans).

  46. I set a limit on Easter this year. The kids go chocolates. Aurora got clothes which she needed anyway and Aidan got a Thomas learning toy.

  47. A basket, a few colored eggs, a bit of chocolate, a stuffed bunny, dinner with family, and throw in an Easter Sunday service. Perfect.

  48. Oh it has gotten BAD! When I was little we got jellybeans, a chocolate bunny (that I NEVER ATE) a few otehr candies and one small gift (think movie, book) now i see parents buying a TON of crap.
    I got Bean a few DVD's. No biggie.

  49. Didn't you get the holiday memo:

    Easter is the new Christmas

  50. We just keep it simple to.

  51. Katie9:37 PM

    I know I'm commenting on a way old post (but you told us to click around and I did and how the heck am I supposed to stay COMPLETELY silent?!?) Anyway, I'm more than disturbed about combining 'Jesus was beaten, tortured and died for our sins, then three days later rose again, defeating Satan and death' with, "Eggs, candy, and cute little bunnies!!" Had a seriously intense Passion play one easter at church, then gave the kids chocolate rabbits. It just didn't work. Not to mention that I now have 8 children, and almost 1 daughter-in-law, and doing baskets for that crowd is ridiculous. So -- we no longer do Easter baskets. We do 'Candy Bunny Baskets.' The weekend AFTER easter. When I can buy everything half-off or even more! And we stock up on dye and color eggs whenever the kids can talk me into the mess. Anyway, a few friends have picked up the idea and love it. Just a thought.