I want Easter to be a really big deal around here. Since we’re Christians, Easter is (or should be) our biggest holiday, and I want our family to really anticipate Easter together. In fact, every time we hang up our Advent calendar, I think to myself that I should do something similar for Lent (the time leading up to Easter), complete with daily Easter activities, just like we do for Christmas.
Now, this wades into some sort of tricky waters-I want our Easter preparations to reflect the more serious nature of the holiday. But I still want Easter to be the biggest celebration ever. And, more importantly, since Easter is all about grace, I don’t want to confuse Burke and Piper Jane by making all of our Easter activities ‘do nice things for others’ because the most important concept of the entire holiday is that we can’t ever be ‘good’ or ‘nice’ without Jesus’s sacrifice anyway. Tricky.
So this is what we’re doing this year- we made an Easter countdown, complete with activities (I strung baker’s twine through the holes already in the top of 20 plastic Easter eggs, numbered them with stickers, filled each one with a treat and an activity, and hung them on our metallic window).
It is festive, and includes ‘celebration-y’ treats like ‘watch Veggie Tales Easter movie’ and ‘open your Easter baskets.’ Honestly, Burke and Pi are beyond excited just to have the countdown of brightly colored eggs, which achieves part of my ‘make Easter a big deal’ hopes.
And then, the kids and I came up with some other activities as well. I asked them to think of ways we can thank God for everything He’s done for us and they came up with really great ideas. Some of it feels ‘be nice to people’-ish, but I am hoping that our conversations about grace can offset the just-work-hard-and-be-good mindset.
This is our final list (like I said, it is Burke and Piper-made, so some of the suggestions are funny-and-cute)-
-Watch the Veggie Tales Easter special.
-Make something for someone as a surprise.
-Make something for old people.
-Give a homeless person a snack.
-Give a homeless person real food, like a hamburger or one of our Saturday morning donuts.
-Have an Easter egg hunt.
-Have an Easter treat.
-Meet our neighbors across the street.
-Help someone who needs it (Burke added, “That’s called compassion, mom.” That kid cracks me up.)
-Give a toy to a kid who needs it.
-Meet some more neighbors.
-Dye Easter eggs.
-Make a special Easter dinner.
-Do something nice for a friend.
-Read the Good Friday story in the Jesus Storybook Bible.
-Read the Easter story in the Jesus Storybook Bible.
-Open our Easter baskets!
That’s only 18 things… we did a couple of them (‘share’ and ‘do something nice’) twice.
ps- If I do this again next year, I might make our countdown last for all of Lent. I didn’t have my act together this year, so we’re just counting down the twenty days before Easter. Better late than never…