Happy Easter! Did anyone else dye Easter eggs yesterday? I waited until the last minute to buy supplies and showed up at the store surprised to find that all of the kits were sold out. I later came across this idea for using packets of Kool-aid to dye eggs and was completely won over by the notion of our kitchen smelling like a candy factory. One more trip to the grocery store resulted in only a couple of available Kool-aid colors: red, purple and purplish red.
In the end, watercolor paint saved the day. We mixed lots of colors and then painted the pigment onto the eggs. I’m not sure which was more fun, mixing or painting. Regardless, our watercolor eggs turned out awesome. (more…)
It’s almost Easter, and we kicked off our celebrations this weekend by creating garden-themed cookie baskets to give as gifts to teachers and neighbors. Planting seeds in the spring is something I’ve done with Jason and Jenna every year since they were toddlers, and this year was no exception. When I saw these adorable garden mini cookies from Shari’s Berries, I immediately thought about creating garden-themed gift baskets for Easter. (more…)
Happy Spring! Now that Easter is right around the corner, I decided to add a little Spring-time update to our dining room. Like other rooms in our house, we’ve decorated in a modern rustic style with simple furniture, a muted color palette and lots of houseplants for accents. To add a few simple Easter touches, I designed a flower box centerpiece for our table and added this customizable bunting banner from Minted’s spring collection to our wall. (more…)
Easter egg hunts are an annual tradition at our house. Last year, we held two: one night-time glow-in-the-dark easter egg hunt and one traditional hunt on Easter morning. With so much egg-hunting on the horizon, I’m starting to gather filler materials early. Here are a few ideas on my list:
St. Patrick’s Day has never been a big holiday at our house, which is surprising given our love of gold-wrapped chocolates. Instead, we move quickly from Valentine’s Day to Easter. In fact, last weekend we raided the storage closet and found our Easter holiday storage bins. Once the baskets and masses of plastic eggs were freed, we immediately started started playing ‘Easter Egg hunt.’ Let’s just consider it practice for the big day. (more…)
Despite lots of sickness in our family, we had a very nice holiday weekend. It was our first Easter in the new house, and the yard proved to be the perfect site for an egg hunt. Most years, Jason and Jenna quickly snatch up the eggs and count their bounty to see who won. This year, victory definitely went to the Easter bunny. J+J gave up after an extensive search of both the front and back yards, leaving at least 3 or 4 eggs to be found later in the day.
Last night we held our very first nighttime Easter egg hunt using glow-in-the-dark eggs, an idea shared by my aunt in her comments to something I posted last week. Genius! I knew we definitely had to try it out.
The concept is extremely simple – glow sticks inside of eggs – so I think I underestimated the amount of prep work involved. If you’re considering a night-time Easter egg hunt, here are a few tips to keep in mind:
Proportion: Consider the size of your glow sticks in relation to the size of your plastic eggs. I purchased bracelet-sized glow sticks and tried to use the mix of small and large plastic eggs I had on hand. The sticks were nearly impossible to cram into the 2-inch eggs, but fit easily into the larger 3-in eggs. I recommend using all large eggs or purchasing these mini glow sticks (wish I had seen these at the craft store yesterday). As a last resort, tape is your friend.
Material: Similar to the size issue, I had a mix of transparent/textured eggs and the more traditional solid color eggs. Not surprisingly, the solid color eggs were better at giving off a “glow” in the landscape than the transparent eggs.
Timing: Since you have to “turn on” the glow sticks, there isn’t a lot of opportunity to prep this activity in advance. It took my husband and me almost an hour to place glow sticks into approximately 36 eggs and hide them in the backyard. I had planned on having our hunt just after dusk so that there would still be a bit of natural light for photos. But the prep took longer than expected and we ended up taking the kids out just past their usual bedtime, in full-on darkness. If you’re going for optimum glow effect, however, this is the perfect time for your egg hunt. Seeing the eggs glowing around the yard was definitely a very cool sight!
I’ve made decoupage bowls before and I’ve always found it a pretty messy craft. I came across this technique recently for creating little paper birds nests without ending up with glue covered hands and decided to try it out with Jenna. We made a bird nest (using long strips of paper) first, and then I tried making a couple with paper punch circles. Both were very easy and turned out super cute.
Here’s how to make them:
Cut decorative paper into narrow strips or use a paper punch to create small circles.
Mix glue and water (2/3 glue to 1/3 water) and paint the inside of a small bowl.
Cover the inside of the bowl with plastic wrap and paint another layer of glue over the plastic wrap.
Add a layer of paper, starting at the bottom and working your way up the side of the bowl. Use a paint brush to gently coat the paper with glue as you go. You can add a second layer and additional coats of glue for a sturdier bowl.
Let the paper dry in the bowl for several hours. Once the inside is dry, lift it out of the bowl and remove the plastic wrap. Turn the bowl upside down and let dry completely.
The sickness in our house continued into our weekend, so there wasn’t a lot of photo snapping the past few days. We did, however, manage to dye Easter eggs and conduct our annual Easter egg hunt. Jason and Jenna love hunting for eggs and are especially competitive about finding the golden egg. This year, there were two, so each could claim victory. Jason was especially pleased when he discovered that the golden egg contained “the Abraham Lincoln dollar bill,” apparently his favorite of all the dollar bills. I asked Jenna later what her favorite part of Easter weekend was and, not surprisingly, she cited the Easter egg hunt and finding the golden egg as the best.
And speaking of Easter egg hunts, can you spot the egg in the last photo? Even after I pointed this one out, it took a bit for anyone to recognize the egg nested near the bottom of this tree. That Easter bunny is a sneaky one …
We had a house full of sickness this weekend, which makes for the perfect time for simple crafts like this one. I bought a batch of paper eggs at the craft store and let Jason and Jenna go to town painting them in pink, gold and silver. I thought we would use them as decorations, but Jenna has already hidden them in her room. Guess I’ll have to find them first.
Yay – I finally made natural dyes for our eggs this year! And it was much easier than I expected. I was really happy with the results, but J+J were less than thrilled with the amount of time they had to leave each egg in the dye. Jason’s face in the first picture just about sums up their reaction. I used an egg timer to try to turn it into a game, but Jason only dyed two eggs and then moved on to more exciting pursuits. Other Easter activities were more successful, including making cookies, an Easter egg hunt and, my favorite, brunch on the patio.
How much longer?
Daddy prepared french toast on the grill. Hopefully a new annual tradition.
Jason won the Easter egg hunt by a landslide.
Jenna enjoys pretty egg dishes. But eggs? Not so much.
Easter is happening so suddenly this year. Usually as soon as one holiday is over J+J are begging for the next holiday, causing us to decorate weeks in advance and start every day by answering the question “how many days until (holiday)?” I think we started our countdown to Easter on Wednesday night, and I have to say it was pretty nice to be able to say ‘4’ instead of ’30-ish.’ Guess it’s time to put up some decorations.
Before I get started, here are a few favorites from my week:
After all of the recent articles about how much better the French are when it comes to raising children, I definitely enjoyed reading this.
I’d love to try this project with J+J, but they never seem to like messy crafts as much as I do.
Definitely bookmarked this post about shopping in Paris.
Our collection of mismatched plastic Easter eggs grows every year. Problem solved.
Between my love of Parisian maps, Jenna’s recent obsession with drawings maps and the new GPS device in our car, we seem to be a bit map-crazy at our house these days. Jenna’s maps are often of our neighborhood, documenting (in a very abstract manner) the route to school, to the pool, to our house, etc. But J+J also associate maps with treasure hunts. And so all of this thinking about maps got me thinking about our annual Easter egg hunt tradition, and I decided to turn it into a treasure hunt of sorts, using, of course, a map.
I haven’t worked out all of the details yet, but when J+J wake up on Sunday morning, they will each receive a map of our backyard instead of Easter baskets. To find their baskets, they’ll need to follow the map, and then continue on to hunt for eggs and, finally, the breakfast treasure (probably pancakes, their current favorite).
Oh, and of course I have to show you a couple of Jenna’s recent map drawings. I LOVE these!
Click the link/s above to save and print the file/s.
Once your labels are printed, you can cut them out by hand or use a 3 1/2 inch circle paper punch. Note: the circles are slightly larger than 3 1/2 inches in diameter. I find this makes it easier to not end up with white along the edges.
Glue the labels to your packaging (you could use gift boxes, paper bags, etc.)