Sunday, April 12, 2009

The Easter Bunny Chronicles

After today, my daughter Madelyn has lived through a total of three Easter holidays. At the first, she was a mere 4 months old. Besides the phenomenon that 9 out of the 10 girls at our family gathering showed up wearing shades of pink without any premeditated collaboration, it was a fairly uneventful holiday for Madelyn.

But that is because she had no business participating in any hunting of Easter eggs. Madelyn's second and third Easter experiences have both been clouded by minor egg-hunt grievances. Not that she has any clue about this, but I can't help noticing the pattern.

Madelyn was 15 months old at the time of her first Easter egg hunt attempt. A timid age, surrounded by lots of people and noise, she was slowly trying to figure out the whole idea of picking up the plastic eggs and putting them into her basket.

Well, "you snooze, you lose." This young man reached right around Madelyn and snatched the very egg she was reaching for. And if you can't tell, he already has an egg under his palm as well. Not too mention the giant grocery satchel compared to Madelyn's tiny straw purse. Ahem. Sorry, I'm sure he is normally a very well-mannered boy and just got caught up in the excitement.
Last year we also showed up 47 seconds late to a different egg hunt, meaning that every last one of the 10,000 eggs on the premises were already found. These comprise Madelyn's first Easter experiences.
This year we went to an Easter egg hunt put on by one of my mom-friends. It is a really sweet thing for her to do. I never want Madelyn to feel like the purpose of these activities is to "get" as much as you can. It's just for fun! Especially at this age, there is no point in overdoing the egg collecting.
So after Madelyn had filled her relatively small basket (her Care Bear was already taking up half the room anyway), we stepped aside and let the other children find the remaining eggs. I do appreciate that most of the eggs were filled with little toys or temporary tattoos instead of candy.
Everyone returned to my friend's house to visit while the kids opened their eggs. I immediately went to the kitchen to discard Madelyn's snotty tissue when we got there. When I returned to Madelyn, I found that she had dumped out her basket just inside the door, and was happily unwrapping a piece of candy she found inside one of her eggs. All the rest of her eggs had been swooped up into the other kids' piles. Probably unintentionally. But at this point Madelyn was left with one egg for her basket.
I casually mentioned the amusing situation to my friend next to me, and she said we could have some of her son's eggs. That was sweet of her, especially since, being right next to us, some of his were probably eggs Madelyn had found in the first place. Except she never actually gave us any, and I didn't feel comfortable just taking them.
Amid the chaos, I was able to slide a few seemingly "stray" eggs back to Madelyn's area undetected. I had noticed some foam capsules that grow into animals or dinosaurs when placed in water, and I knew Madelyn would enjoy those. So I asked the hostess if she had any extras, which she did. So I was entirely pleased to go home with those, a couple of play-doh tubs, and a sticker or two. When we got home, however, I discovered that the foam capsules had somehow been misplaced. I was really disappointed about that.

The contents of Madelyn's basket at time of departure
(compare with full basket at end of egg hunt, above)
Another child's collection of eggs. One child.
I put on a little Easter egg hunt for Madelyn at home this morning. She had a lot of fun, and no one stole her eggs. So I was happy too.
And now just for FUN...
Frightening Easter Bunnies of Days PastMy brother John, me, my cousin Rachel. Easter 1990.

A very scary bunny trying to eat my mother. Why would any child want to sit on this lap?


Annie said...

Ahh yes. I remember those days well. So, here's a little hint for you (since my daughter always seemed to be on the losing end of every egg hunt - for years!): Stash some pre-filled eggs in your purse, the diaper bag, the car, wherever. Then when she's not looking slip them into her basket. My dearest mother-in-law taught me this little trick and it worked like a charm. (When she was older I would say, "Look what I found? These are extra that Grandma Tykie had...")

Bridget said...

Grr. How frustrating, because those little capsule grow-in-the-water things are really cool!

Mikael said...

I saw your brother at church. Apparently he knows Derek, he did some work for the project he is on. Funny!
HAPPY EASTER!! (wish you came to church... it is really fun to see all the old nerds there. Still the same!)


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