The Importance of Play for Children

Easter – The Celebration Of Life

easterEaster is just over a month away, I always feel like Easter is quite a weird holiday. As a kid growing up, I never felt the anticipation for Easter. I was very appreciative of the chocolate eggs but compared to Christmas it did not really feel like such a big deal. However, my son is very excited about Easter, he seems convinced that the Easter Bunny himself will be coming to see him, not sure where he got that idea from?

Where did the Easter Bunny come from?

One of those most puzzling things I find about Easter is who decided to take the concept of Easter and then add Chocolate Eggs and a big bunny rabbit? This never really puzzled me as a child, despite knowing the true meaning (the day Jesus rose back from the dead), I was obviously quite accepting as a child, but as an adult I just find it, well, a tad bit weird.

So how did we get from Jesus’ resurrection to a bunny delivering chocolate eggs? Well, the Easter Bunny can be dated back as far as the 19th Century. The idea is that a rabbit symbolises new life, therefore baby chicks and lambs are also popular Easter characters. Modern Easter has become less about Jesus’ resurrection and more about celebrating new life.

As for Easter eggs, these were not always chocolate. Easter eggs used to be regular eggs that people painted and decorated to mark Holy Week. The eggs would then often be given to children as little gifts. As time went on Easter would be marked with more gifts until eventually, we have the Easter we have now.cross

Easter today

I mentioned about that all I really got at Easter was a few chocolate eggs, we would also go to Church, and my parents might have got a few cards. I will be honest, I did not really expect Easter to change that much. However, like Halloween, Easter seems to be a lot more elaborate. Easter eggs are still the centre piece of Easter but there are other great ways in which parents can help children celebrate Easter.

As well as Easter Eggs, parents can also give their children lots of little gifts in an Easter basket, these gifts can include Easter sweets, little cuddly toys, books, etc. Easter egg hunts have become quite big, I heard about them as a child but never knew anyone who took part. If you do not want to organise your own however, a lot of places will organise them, look at what is going on in your local area.

What of the most surprising things I came across last year was the concept of an Easter tree! You can buy an Easter tree or you can make one yourself. They are generally light-coloured trees, with only branches and no leaves and decorated with lot of Easter egg shaped baubles. What surprised me the most about the Easter egg tree was finding out that it wasn’t a new idea, it is a custom that was very popular in Germany, but the custom became lost, until now.

One thing is for definite, there is plenty of fun to be had this Easter!

easter tree

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