Tag: Easter

Traditions be damned

This past weekend we celebrated Easter. There was a time when my kids were small that I dressed them up for the occasion.  Garey wore a tie; Nina suffered through a frilly dress. All for tradition’s sake.

We would have Easter dinner at mom and dad’s. Ham, potato salad and green beans. A dessert or two. Maybe deviled eggs. And the day before, we waited anxiously for the little colored tablet to dissolve in the vinegar so we could dye eggs. So exciting! Sometimes they would use the little wax crayon that came with the dying kit to write their names on their eggs. Fun times. At least I think they were. 20140419_193944

There may have been some tears because an egg was cracked, or I might have fussed because one of the kids spilled one of the cups of dye. But it was a tradition dating back many, many years. Not just for us—for everyone since Paas sold their first dying kit.

It was like leaving cookies for Santa. Dying eggs at Easter was expected. Those parents who didn’t weren’t worthy to be called parents. They were depriving their kids of a tradition.

And what do we do with traditions? We carry them on. Play them forward. Even if we’re left scratching our heads and wondering why we continue to do these things.

So Nina dyed eggs with her kids Saturday night. She asked if I wanted to come help. Sure. We’ll carry on the tradition.

20140419_190826Landon wasn’t too interested so he was in and out. Ava enjoyed helping Ireland, as long as Ireland kept her grimy little hands off Ava’s meticulously dyed, multi-colored eggs. Ivy thought it was the neatest thing EVER! Until Ireland wanted to dye her egg pink, too. Ivy balked because she owns the copyright to pink or something like that. Hissy fit #1. Ireland didn’t understand why she had to dye her egg blue. Casey’s egg was blue. Hissy fit #2.  Ivy didn’t understand the waiting game—the egg has to soak in the color for oh, like, at least 30 seconds. Hissy fit #3.  Casey liked the little metal dipper thingy. But keep in mind we’re still working with him on using a spoon and fork so when he couldn’t get the little dipper to work just right, yeah, go ahead—just reach in there with all the dye and grab that egg. 20140419_190839Oops. That one cracked. Hissy fit #4. So after all the eggs were colored, Ava finds the little wax crayon and wants to know what it is. Ava, the budding artist, writer, songwriter, who will write on anything is devastated. She could have written a whole song on one of those eggs! Or at least her name.

So much for the egg dying tradition. I decided that maybe, instead of picture perfect traditions, our new tradition would be to just give in to the chaos. Just enjoy the ride. One day all these kids will have kids of their own. What’s that old saying? Payback’s hell.20140419_193952

Great expectations followed by reality

Paisley

Sweet Paisley making a wish

Every once in a while someone will post a funny card on facebook comparing expectations and reality. 99.9% of the time, the cards are an exact take on this crazy thing we call life.

Case in point, my Easter weekend. I’ll admit, it was pretty darn silly of me to have fantasized about the perfect dinner where we eat on fine china, drink fine wine from crystal goblets, dab at our well-fed mouths with linen napkins, and my grandsons all wear ties with their button-down shirts while the girls wear beautiful spring dresses and white patent leather shoes.

Yeah.

Well, for one, we can’t all fit at a table. Two, no one wants to spend the entire afternoon washing the fine china so our plates of choice tend to be from the disposable line. Along with the silverware. A truly fine wine makes us all shudder so we prefer the real fruity, sweet, and cheap, kind.  If we used a linen napkin, it would be to wipe up a spill before the Hi-C stains the counter top. As for the ties and spring dresses…oops…I’m back now…fell out of my chair laughing.

I think it kind of started a few days before Easter. My daughter Nina and I had all the grandkids outside playing on the super-duper playset. It’s two cedar playhouses with swings, slides, rope climbing, all connected with a cross-walk bridge. Beautiful day – let’s play outside! Before long, Ivy and Aiden were crying because they wanted the baby swings which were meant for the twins. Casey loved the swing; Ireland, not so much. She is NOT an adventurer. If she’d had more teeth than her four she’d have worn them to the gum from gritting them. Every time the swing moved, the look on that poor child’s face was sheer terror. Nina and I purposely moved it a couple times just to see her reaction. LOL. Just kidding. Well, okay maybe we did it just once. So anyway, Ivy and Aiden are still crying, Ireland’s ready to puke, and then it gets worse. Emma and Landon gang on up Ava and Paisley and call Ava a devil child. Ava’s feelings are majorly hurt so she runs to the porch, crying. Emma asks me if I’m taking them home anytime soon. When I tell her yes, she crosses her arms across her chest (she has this move down pat!) and yells in Ava’s direction “Good. I don’t want to stay anyway!” Nina overhears Emma and scolds her for being rude. Emma is mortified her Aunt Nina has scolded her and takes on a look similar to Ireland’s in the swing. We decide we’ve had enough “fun” time for the day and start herding kids inside (it’s worse than trying to herd cats!) You have to carry the twins or they’ll turn on you and head back to the playset just as you reach the porch. Taking the kids out to play is a two person job – one person can’t carry both twins. So our wonderful, beautiful play day ended with Ivy and Aiden still crying, Emma crying, Ava crying, and the twins crying because they had to come back inside. Great expectations that didn’t quite measure up.

Then there was Saturday before Easter. Landon had a baseball tournament to open the season. It was going to be great and so much fun. I truly do enjoy watching him play baseball. I love the whole crowded community center thing with games going on all the ballfields, kids running and playing, heat from the metal bleachers burning through your pants…ahhh. It’s what families are made of. And all those kids running around – they’re fun to watch. Unless their yours. Hard to watch the game when you’re chasing TWO sixteen-month olds and a two-and-half year-old around very crowded bleachers. An army of three adults and a teenager, and the twins and Ivy still managed to exhaust us. We did try and stop most activity when Landon was batting so when he, inevitably, asked “did you see me get that hit,” we could answer somewhat truthfully. I think the twins have seen their last ballgame (like they really watched it!) until they’re like, oh, maybe ten.

Then there was Easter. The kids never even ate, the twins napped through it, Garey was on call and had to work, and son-in-law Allen spent the whole time outside assembling a gazebo.

Honestly…I was a little disappointed. But then I remembered Nina and I sitting in the theater watching Le Miserable’ (or however you spell it!) and how we couldn’t stop giggling at how pretentious it all was. But yet we text to remind one another that “Duck Dynasty” is coming on.

My family. We don’t own a piece of fine china or a linen napkin. The kids cry, and cry, and fight, and get over it. Sometimes they puke in the swing, sometimes they gang up on one another, and sometimes they stand up for one another.

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Yeah…Ireland is wearing her brother’s pajamas because we live in the real world and sometimes ballet slippers just don’t work

I wouldn’t have it any other way.

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