Easters Past

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Wishing you all a happy Easter with your loved ones for those of you who celebrate it! 

Now Easter has always been a huge deal in my family. It’s my father’s favorite holiday, and some of my most vivid childhood memories are of Easter Sunday. I wanted to share some traditions I remember from being a child, as I don’t really celebrate as much anymore.

Every year the holiday would start the night before. My family is Roman Catholic, so we would attend a lengthy candlelight vigil mass the night before. This ceremony was a few hours long and always had beautiful music and a neat ceremony to be a part of.

The next morning my siblings and I would wake up to the most elaborate hunt for our Easter baskets. My parents would stay up late placing clues around the house and planning the scavenger hunt out. To put this in perspective, my parents planned this for at least 5+ children, depending on the year.

So we would wake up and receive our first clue, and then we would search together. The youngest children would get their baskets first, and as the oldest, I would get mine last. Some years they were pretty crafty with their riddles and it would take forever to find the baskets.

Once these were all found, we usually had family over and my mom cooked an elaborate, beautiful meal that we would all share together to end the night.

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This is what Easter is to me – basking in the bliss of my incredible family and revering in the new life of springtime.

Cameron and I don’t really celebrate Easter in the same way-unless we are with family. I’m perfectly content with this, as we do usually make an effort to see family on this day and come out of our ‘bubble.’

To me, Easter is still a beautiful example of life renewed, and a day of quiet and love.

I’ll leave you to your celebrations with a quote from one of my favorite writers –

“When spring came, even the false spring, there were no problems except where to be happiest. The only thing that could spoil a day was people and if you could keep from making engagements, each day had no limits. People were always the limiters of happiness except for the very few that were as good as spring itself.”

Ernest Hemingway

 

Christmas

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Christmas is a strange, nostalgic time for me.

When I was a child it was a magical thing filled with Jesus and mass and family and presents. My sister and I would stay up all night after midnight mass and run downstairs at 4 A.M. to look at all the gifts. I loved the decorating, I loved church, I loved the music, I loved every single second of it.

I don’t really feel that way anymore. Maybe that’s the way it is when you grow up, the magic of simple things fades away. I am not filled with overwhelming joy during the holidays, now it’s mostly just stress and fatigue.

Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely still celebrate Christmas. Nowadays it’s just me and my spouse for most of the day, and we visit my in-laws most years. There’s no mass or rushing to open gifts, and not nearly as much decorating, but I suppose it’s still nice in it’s own way.

For a while it was extremely difficult to do the holidays without my big family. Even though I’m in a loving, wonderful relationship, it just didn’t feel the same at all. Now I realize that it’s not bad, just extremely different. I absolutely loved growing up in a large family, but I don’t want one of my own. My little family is wonderful and simple, and our subtle, anti-climatic holiday celebrations mirror that.

Becoming an adult and your own person is extremely difficult, especially around the holidays, but making your own traditions can make things a lot easier.

No, I’m not at all religious anymore- instead of mass my spouse and I spend time together getting the stockings ready for our dogs in the morning while drinking hot beverages and listening to music. Instead of waking up at 4, we sleep in and snuggle most of the morning. There’s no staying in pajamas with chocolate and cheese danish all day- now we share part of our day with our in-laws and put real clothes on.

What are your favorite holiday traditions? How did you feel transitioning from childhood to adulthood during the holidays?