Storified by ebanreb· Sun, Mar 31 2013 21:46:35
What are your favorite Easter memories from your childhood? Hunting for Easter eggs? Chomping down on marshmallow peeps? Biting the ears off your Easter bunnies?
Or maybe the most magical part was the preparation: painting those eggs, and anticipating the candy you'd get. The Easter basket, with green grass and chocolate bunnies...maybe a stuffed chick or even a real duckling!
I'm sure you'd like to recreate some of those fond memories for your family and especially your kids. So here are a few tips to help you make that happen.
For many families, Easter is about their faith, but that won't stop anyone from enjoying Easter egg hunts and Easter candy as a secular celebration. Easter is a day of joy, and the colorful eggs and accessories of traditional Easter serve to enhance that sense of joy in the essence of Spring and rebirth.
For kids, or course, some of the appeal of Easter lies in the fact that it is yet another holiday where they expect to get lots of chocolates, candies, and other treats. And for the purposes of this report, we'll focus on the fun aspects of Easter, along with its joyousness. You can have a happy Easter, celebrating Springtime and its beauty and freedom, without focusing entirely on sugary stuff.
Easter is a Family Affair
Families vary in how they like to celebrate Easter. So you get to pick just how you'd like to celebrate. But in spite of the individual differences, there are a lot of themes in common as well. Here are some of the standard ingredients:
Easter is (for many folks) about treats...and key among the treats are Easter eggs. It's not Easter unless lots of eggs are tucked into the basket, along with a variety of other candy. And about those eggs... there are so many different kinds, from chocolate eggs with and without filling, candy eggs, marshmallow eggs, and yes, even hard-boiled eggs that have been decorated brightly to add to the cheer.
Peeps, preferably in various shapes and colors, are a must as well, as are jelly beans, which really look like miniature eggs.
Some families even have their own special baked goods for Easter, which can range from special breads to cookies to fancy cakes with colorful Easter decorations. My mother used to bake each of us a cake in the shape of either Easter bunnies and Easter lambs! Some years, she let us pick which one we wanted.
If there's an Easter parade in town or even nearby, be sure to take the kids, and snap plenty of pictures. If you go, you should be sure to get (or create) some special Easter bonnets for everyone, as there are often competitions for the best Easter bonnet at these events.
For example, Richmond, Virginia, has a special Easter parade, fittingly called "Easter on Parade," that turns Monument Avenue, a gorgeous tree-lined Avenue with beautiful old homes and monuments into a temporary playground for Richmond's citizens, who wander up and down, showing off their bonnets -- and their decorated dogs. There are contests for best bonnets, both for humans and for their canine friends.
Meanwhile, there's music playing all along the Avenue, and lots of fancy crafts as well as yummy goodies are for sale. There are also games for kids. Parades like this one can make for very special memories.
Children always love Egg Hunts, which many towns, villages or institutions will organize on Easter weekend, so if you have a chance to take the kids to an Egg Hunt near where you live, they'll have a blast. If not, you can always hide eggs and candies tucked into colorful plastic eggs around the house or outside in the garden, weather-permitting.