Growing up Easter Sunday was a time to be with friends. We weren’t a religious family, so the true message of why Easter came about was slightly lost on us young folks. We spent the day like so many of our neighbors, rolling our hand painted boiled eggs until they smashed, before sitting down dressed in frocks to lengthy lunch of roast lamb and all the trimmings, excitedly anticipating the foil wrapped chocolate eggs which would conclude the celebrations. The house would be bustling with friends and we’d spend the rest of the afternoon inhaling copious quantities of chocolate.
My own childhood was spent in Scotland where life was a little more formal than my own kids upbringing in Colorado. Sitting around a table on a bluebird spring day to eat a heavy meal dressed to the nines just wouldn’t cut it around here.
Five years ago, we decided to celebrate Easter Sunday with a group of great friends by heading outdoors for a day of fun and frivolity. It was so memorable, it has become a tradition providing endless table talk and jibes throughout the year.
Our Sunday best for that day consists of snow pants and beanies. Cars are loaded with coolers, sleds, snowshoes, shovels, chopped wood and a secret stash of chocolate eggs. It’s all hands on deck transporting supplies to our snow covered meadow in the forrest. What we’ve learned over the years is that kids, regardless of age, want to play their part in setting up. Packing up at the end however, requires a masters in the art of coercion.
Kids disperse on sleds, parents fall into stereotypical roles of digging fire pits, setting up picnics and hiding eggs for the highly anticipated hunt. Then the fun begins. Sled races grow to competitive levels cumulating in the testosterone charged Dad’s race down a steep embankment. The “how far can you throw your welly boot” is a nod to my ‘Scottishness.’ Kids posthole through the trees snagging their chocolate loot, shooing off zealous furry friends that inevitably follow. We eat, drink, laugh, yell at the dogs, warm chilled little fingers, and somewhere in the mix I think we all thank God in our own ways for what we have.
As you plan your own Easter Sunday this year, remember some of the best memories may take a little planning. Based on the ear to ear smiles I will see in one week’s time, it’s worth it.