this year i was overly concerned about easter. christmas has been so commercialized i've kind of given up on the true meaning being the main focus... at least for now. but easter? i mean i know easter is actually a pagan holiday, etc etc. but as christians celebrate it, it's the most important "holiday" of our faith. christmas is special, but easter goes beyond special. it is a celebration of the whole reason for our existence as a religion. i did NOT want that to get lost under the faux grass in lula's pink easter basket filled with colorful eggs chock full of candy surrounded by toys and clothes and more candy. where is jesus in that basket? you see why i was kind of panicking?
at the same time i don't want to be one of "those" people who go all psycho and cut out any kind of fun or social/cultural normalcy from my kids' lives to make a point only to find them rebelling against my craziness later! where's the balance?!
so in an attempt to control things to some degree, i requested that the children not receive any toys for easter this year. they get enough toys as it is throughout the rest of the year. therefore only "needs" were allowed in their baskets. they received clothes, books, and candy... because they really "need" all of those things! especially the candy! (don't worry... at some point i realized how ridiculous this all was.)
easter weekend was a lot of fun as we spent time with family and friends. (i'll recap what we did exactly in my next post.) and what i was initially worried about, that jesus's death and resurrection would get lost in the egg hunts, ended up being needless worry. i was pleased that the kids' baskets weren't filled with toys. they were excited about the clothes and candy, but it wasn't the focus.
what they really loved were their new books. i chose only books that told the christian easter story instead of secularized books about the easter bunny, etc. lula has been reading one of the books every day and night. it's called lily's easter party. in the story, the parents set up an egg hunt with twelve eggs each filled with a little symbol of the easter story. lula listens intently even though the story is rather long for her age. she has been having her own easter egg hunts with diesel. i've overheard her trying to tell him the easter story like the book does while hunting for eggs around the backyard.
so in the end, i think we did ok. the kids had fun and received presents, but in the end, the message, the most important message of all, was the focal point and what was remembered. i still like the idea of them not receiving toys, but i don't think i'll be quite so panicky about the rest of it next year!
i'm sure there are those who think i over-analyze everything. and i do to some degree. but we're christians living in a very secular world. if i don't analyze how we're living our lives and how the world is going to affect us, then we'll simply ride the tide and go along with the crowd. i have no desire to do that. so yes, i analyze what traditions, holidays, daily life will look like for my family. and i ask the Lord for guidance too of course. i've learned a lot since having little ones. they definitely make you think hard and reevaluate for your values, etc.i know we won't get everything right. we'll look back and have plenty of regrets and "what ifs". but i guess i'm trying to minimize those regrets as much as possible. is that possible? who knows! hindsight is 20/20. alright... i've preached long enough!