Monday, March 28, 2016

Holiday Traditions: Easter

Our children get excited. Really, really excited for any holiday. Our oldest who typically presents with a more shy and conservative demeanor suddenly bounces off of the walls which usually ends in an epic meltdown. He stops sleeping and just get "sooooooooo excited." Whether it's a quiet day with the family or an exciting adventure, it tends to yield too much excitement for him. Perhaps this is a trickle effect for him from having a birthday over Christmas and that has set some tone for subsequent holidays. I don't know.  Our youngest can "handle the pressure" but our oldest, absolutely cannot contain his that I have officially over-used the word "excitement", I can honestly say that he has a distinctive personality that continually allows you to look at things from new perspective and grow your patience.

We struggle to maintain the excitement and passion for celebrations with a calm and peaceful vibe; can you relate?  This year for Easter we planned a family breakfast. The whole focus for the festivities became about this special breakfast. And--- it worked. We still had the "traditional" - commercialized? - egg hunt but the focus on the family breakfast without any mention of the egg hunt, yielded a successful day. A really successful day. A new tradition has been formed where we focus on the details of the holiday meal. This seems to provide the excitement for our son while keeping that excitement contained and ensuring the focus of the holiday is that of family versus commercialism. He had the details covered - pancakes shaped as bunnies, the remaining pancakes served in a Easter basket, special spring napkins... he set the table with pride, escorted everyone to the table... the day followed with an Easter Egg Hunt, a family walk to a local farm, and ended with a family movie night.

You can tell from this, we are not religious but we have begun reading "Our Daily Bread." We grapple on a daily basis to find peace and surround ourselves with a central focus that is bigger than ourselves... Our six year old absolutely gravitates to this book and its messages. I highly recommend checking it out. Discovery House introduces the book well, "If you’re looking for ways to help your children or grandchildren learn and grow spiritually without being too preachy, too boring, or too demanding, look no further. Bestselling children’s author Crystal Bowman and her daughter, Teri McKinley, present short and engaging devotions, easy-to-remember Bible verses, and exciting facts that encourage children to spend time with God and apply the truths of His Word to their everyday lives. This illustrated, kid-friendly version of the well-loved Our Daily Bread devotional is perfect for children ages 6–10."

Now, in complete contraction to what I have just said, here are the kids enjoying their egg hunt... From our family to yours, Happy Easter!