Making the Ordinary, Extraordinary
It is Easter Sunday today, folks! Well, at least with the Western calendar. My Greek Orthodox friends at the local gyro shop (love gyro! I could eat that spiced lamb any day, along with my dream of daily sushi or Thai!) won`t be having their`s until May 5th, but if you fall in that category, why not celebrate twice? Expecially if you plan to go to a service and have a lot of traditions focusing on God for the actual day of Easter, I say you should spend the Western one enjoying all the fun and games planned! I myself have a hankering to do a few things for today. In fact, in an effort to liven up our traditions, I decided to share a list of some of my favorite Easter and Spring themed things with you. Happy Easter (or merry, if you like to use a different word like that!)
I know that one of the biggest things for Easter is dyeing some eggs, but a lot of the kits out there have such a strong chemical smell, I almost don`t feel safe being near it and breathing in the fumes, let alone eating anything that touched that. In my family, we hardboil the eggs so they don`t spoil during the dye process, but you could also just poke a tiny hole in the bottom and blow the egg into a bowl, to use later for a brunch of omelettes.
Well, we have to do something with those egg yolks and whites, don`t we? If you do at least a few of your egg dying by blowing out the egg, instead of boiling all of them, you`ll be able to make this yummy veggie risoto with poached eggs from Bon Appetite`s site.
When you set this up, be sure to take out some of your Grandma`s embroidered napkins. Or, if you don`t have anything like that, just be sure to use real cloth napkins and some sterling silver tableware, as well as true glass tumblers, for your tablescape. Nothing says ‘I love you” by putting a little extra effort in and making a fancier than normal meal. Why, some of my favorite memories of every holiday is of my family sitting around the table in the dining room, eating with the good china and feeling like adults. I don`t suggest this with children under about eight, mind, but if the are at that mark, feel free to let them be part of something nice! And if they don`t normally have any practice or aptitude for formal dining, this will be a good in family proving ground to help improve their skills.
Once you`ve made the eggs, you may wonder if you really need to decorate at all. Well, think again. What, you are going to leave your boiled eggs out on the counter all day? They will spoil if you keep them out too long, and rotten eggs smell awful. Thinking of hanging up cute bunnies and lambs and chicks all over the place? Well, for one thing, sheep are the grumpiest and stupidest creatures on Earth, so I wouldn`t celebrate them as all that is cute and cuddly either way. And for another, that`s a great plan if you have kids, and you want to decorate for them. For anyone else, you should go a bit more grown up than that. And what is the most Spring-y and ageless decoration out there? Flowers!
I know, it`s not really the prettiest background, but the flowers themselves are lovely! For more information, I love Old Tulip`s site, as they focus on the preservation of heirloom varieties, and I think heirloom plants are an important part of our culture that needs preservation as much as anything in a museum. If you want to buy some bulbs, Old House Gardens sells some wonderful antique varieties.
Oh, I know that it seems a little silly and old fashioned to dress up for a holiday where you are running around outside. But my philosophy on the subject is simple: never miss one of the rare chances you get to be really dressy! So, in light of this, I have held firm to the opinion that a new Easter dress or outfit is still a must. That doesn`t mean it has to have huge flowers blooming all over it, however.
If anyone asks why you are wearing bright red in Spring time, the first thing to do is to remind them that red is the color for this season. If they continue pestering, just tell them you were inspired by your king tulips and the cat walk, and that should awe them into silence.
Well, there has to be some sort of frantic search for something on Easter. It`s traditional, you know. If you live in Florida or are on vacation around Orlando, you can visit Walt Disney World and take part in the egg hunt there. There are always a lot of local options, at least across the states, as well; and you can look those up by area on line. The list for D.C. itself is humongous, let alone when you include all the culturally-but-not-by-map cities that also make up the D.C. Metropolitan Area. If you are hosting an egg search for your`s or other kids, you could also think of leaving stickers, small coins, and tiny toys in the eggs, and only a few organic little sweets lying around. Or, if your kids are about 8-18, you could leave a present hiding somewhere in the house. The Frau has been doing that for the last several years, and I haven`t found my present without help once! It`s kind of funny, my sister always finds her own, as well as mine! She always was the one that could find the hidden Halloween candy (3 pieces each the day of, and the rest is hidden and slowly parceled out the rest of the year) and birthday presents. And yet, she always loses her own things! Such an interesting girl.
Anyways, that is really all I was about to say here. Minimize sweets and maximize fun by including things besides candy!
Also, if you are an adult and are having a party with other adult friends, you may feel that an Easter egg hunt is silly and childish. I`d kind of believe it, too. So, instead, you should split everyone up in teams and send them on a scavenger hunt! Have everyone take pictures as proof of where they`ve been, and make areas that look especially good at this time of year your destinations. For example, if someone were setting up a D.C. scavenger hunt, I`d send them to the cherry blossoms, the white house to see the kiddies playing there, and all the other areas that really are shown to their best at this time of year.