This is the second post in a 3 part series entitled: Happy Secular Easter! Check out part one here.
When I was a child, every spring we celebrated Easter with egg hunts, baskets filled with new spring clothes, chocolate bunnies, and sickly sweet, cream-filled eggs. Sometimes an aunt or uncle would read us the Christian Easter story out of a children’s Bible, but the holiday never represented much for me religiously–my parents are also secular.
Now that I am an adult and have children of my own, I find myself struggling during each holiday season. It’s a pull between wanting to share experiences from my childhood with my kids and not wanting to celebrate religious holidays.
This year I am setting out to find a happy medium between my desire to be true to myself and to celebrate the season with my family. I’ve come up with a list of ideas that your family can try, too.
Fun with Eggs!
Eggs have deep roots in spring celebrations and have been thought of as a symbol of birth, fertility, and resurrection–all themes that tie in nicely with the new growth and baby animals we observe each spring! Dyeing eggs can be a science experiment, a nature-inspired art project, or just a fun, messy activity to do as a family. You could be on an expedition looking for “dinosaur eggs” and learn about the Mesozoic Era along the way. Of course, there are always jelly bean eggs, crème filled eggs, and chocolate eggs. I don’t need a reason to eat those!
Since Easter falls right after the spring equinox, planting seeds and learning about how plants grow go hand in hand. Since my children are 4 and 1 (and I have zero gardening abilities) we are going to grow grass in our home this year. I love the idea of planting in clear cups to show how roots grow and making it fun for the kids by having them decorate their own cups. We can all guess (make a hypothesis!) about how many days it will take for the grass to grow. Other ideas include planting bean sprouts, a herb garden, or try out an egg carton greenhouse for starters.
Easter baskets can be linked to Pagan, German, Middle Eastern, and Christian traditions. For our family, they’re just about having fun and passing down traditions. Our kids will get a new Spring outfit, sunglasses, bubbles, and a spring-themed gift like a bug-catching kit or mini gardening tools to take to Grandma’s. I know How a Seed Grows by Helene J. Jordan will be in my daughter’s basket this year! In our family, it is tradition to hide the Easter Basket and have to look for it on Easter morning–I found mine in the dryer once! The Easter Bunny (or Hare, as it was originally) is such a trickster.
The best part of any holiday is being with my family and being reminded to slow down. I think all parents, regardless of their religious views, can appreciate that. My favorite holiday tradition is to make a big brunch with cinnamon rolls or banana crumb muffins, fruit salad, eggs, and bacon.
What are your plans to celebrate this spring? Share in the comments below or tag us with #SecularFamily on Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook!
Check out our Pinterest board for more Secular Easter and spring celebration ideas!