My son woke us up at ten to seven this morning, hours later than we predicted. He has been exclaiming at random, for two days, “Who loves Easter? Raise your hand!” and yesterday morning told us that he wished he had slept longer because then it would be that much closer to Easter.

Why all the fuss? His basket will have candy and a few new (small and cheap) toys, but we don’t restrict those things for the rest of the year, so they are not really special. It’s a combination of the bunny and tradition. At six, the Easter rabbit is important, but as he grows and loses faith in the rabbit, the traditions will more than make up for a lack of magical home invasion.

I have friends who celebrate the equinox instead of Easter, but I’m not sure if I’ll ever make that leap. Easter, to me, is a celebration of spring, re-birth, renewal. I grew up with all the lamb and egg symbolism; dying eggs and waiting for the Easter Bunny is an important part of my tradition. Does it have religious meaning to me? No, but that doesn’t make it any less enjoyable.  At six, my son feels the weight of tradition, too. My oldest daughter made the effort to come home, and it wasn’t because I put new flip-flops in her basket. We have a need for days of collective celebration, a setting aside of the usual routine.

Here’s what makes my Easter special:

  • All my kids are home
  • The only reason to leave the house today is for a party
  • Cousins and sisters have contacted me to wish me a Happy Easter
  • We all watched a movie together, with no work or obligation to interrupt (it was the Errol Flynn version of Robin Hood)
  • Pumpkin coffee cake, bacon and mimosas
  • My 20-year-old came in and immediately started searching the house for her basket, thinking it was hidden, like we do for the little ones. We had a good laugh when she found it in plain view, on the living room chair.
  • The egg hunt and basket hunt.
  • Organic mango lollipops. I confiscated them from the baskets after realizing how delicious they are.

Happy Easter, I hope your spring and summer are filled with sunshine and love.