Easter Sunday is almost upon us. Time for egg hunts, twirly dresses, and children positively vibrating from all that sugar. It’s also the occasion - according to the radio commercial I heard last week - to “make all of their Easter dreams and wishes come true.”
I’m sorry. What? Did I miss when Easter became the new Valentine’s Day (which, as everyone knows, is the new Christmas)? Sorry, kiddos: I have no intention of making any Easter dreams come true, unless you’re wildly hoping for jellybeans and a new sticker book from Target.
I truly don’t understand the circulars promoting Easter morning Razor scooters, princess castles, and - oh my God, for real? - iPad minis. Who are these people? Who are these parents? When did a chocolate bunny as big as your head stop being enough?
Permit me to tighten my apron and sit on my plastic-covered sofa as I bemoan a few facts: Back in my day, Easter baskets were 25 percent stuffed animal, 25 percent stickers, 25 percent chocolate and 25 percent fake grass filler. And guess what? I used to lie awake the night before Easter and shiver with excitement over what the animal would look like, whether or not the stickers were puffy, how much chocolate I could consume before church and what color the grass would be. (Pink! Oh, please let it be pink!) There were no Big Ticket items. There didn't need to be Big Ticket Items. It was Easter! There were hard-boiled egg wars and baking endeavors with my Mom and dresses with all of the flounce that J.C. Penney’s could provide.
These days, for me, Easter is more about the promise of honey-baked ham (for a week!) and hearing fellow churchgoers attempt the high harmonies at mass, but I haven’t forgotten the excitement over an Easter morning basket. And my kids know to expect just that - a basket. (In fact, my children have been pre-gaming Easter morning all month with a game they like to call Let’s Put Random Things In Plastic Eggs And Hide Them All Over The House Until We Shove Them Into Baskets. It’s a keeper.) They also know not to expect anything which would look downright ridiculous in a basket. For example, a bike: ridiculous. (And potentially dangerous.)
Can we all agree to curtail the excessiveness of what used to be a fairly straightforward holiday? We’re not doing our kids any sort of favor by having them believe each and every celebration is a potential goldmine. Most importantly: let’s not make each other look bad out there, Easter Bunnies. Besides, who can afford it all? Unless, of course, the answer is you.
In that case, I like my chocolate dark and my tablet screen with retina display.
Keely Flynn is a Chicago playwright, freelance writer, and blogger living with three young children, an extraordinarily tolerant husband, and two cats who just try to make it through the day without being ridden like ponies. Check out her personal blog, lollygagblog.com.
See more of Keely's stories here.
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