Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Our Easter Best: Hallmark

This post is another Hallmark sponsored post. I am being paid by Hallmark to write it, but all writing, ideas and opinions are mine. Thankfully, Hallmark and I share the same idea--that little moments are to be celebrated and that good people, good efforts and good intentions deserve a spotlight. See Hallmark Life is a Special Occasion for more details, like them on Facebook, and/or sign up for their e-mail messages HERE.

There were two things I always knew when I was a kid—how many more days until my birthday and what holiday was around the bend. Once I understood superlatives, a holiday ranking system was developed with Christmas taking first prize for favorite, Easter coming in at a close second, and Halloween and Thanksgiving tying for third.

Christmas was easy—it was everybody’s favorite and, as a kid, you can’t argue with presents. Easter was a little trickier though. I mean, I know there’s an Easter basket, Peeps, chocolate bunnies, jelly beans, Whopper eggs, pastel-wrapped Snickers, Cadbury—okay, never mind. Clearly, it’s a deserving holiday.

It wasn’t just the candy though. No, there were cheap hats and lace gloves too. And, come Sunday morning, the annual photo of me and my sister in our Easter finest—also known as Little House on the Prarie-meets-Golden Girls fabulousness, the poster children of Glamour “Don’t”s (i.e.: don’t wear polyester, don’t do matchy-matchy, don’t lick your lips so many times before Easter Sunday that you go to church with a rashtache, don’t abide by “Lace is more,” and don’t forget to check your tights for runs). We were like the Hilton sisters, except way more wholesome. And poor. And not blond. And not famous. Okay, we were nothing like the Hilton sisters.

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Childhood Easter memories are, for me, a lot about church. My dad was a pastor, my mom the church pianist, and our celebration pivoted around my parents’ church responsibilities. It began with Palm Sunday when we joined other Sunday School kids in a reenactment of the Bible story. One year, we were actually given real palm fronds—a rare sight for Michigan kids—to wave as we walked down the sanctuary aisle singing “Hosanna.” I see palm fronds all the time now and every once in a while, when I lean over to pick a fallen one off our driveway, I say “Hosanna” as I throw it away. Actually, that’s not true.

Come Easter Sunday, our house was lively well before sunrise. As we prepared for early services, we scrounged our drawers for the good tights, slipped into new dresses we had laid out the night before, buckled shiny white patent leather shoes, straightened our gawdawful hats and filled our tiny purses with Chapstick and Jolly Ranchers that would keep us entertained through the boring parts of Sunday service. There was music—always music. The Old Rugged Cross and Because He Lives. And once church was over, we returned home where my mom and dad made it special. Egg hunts and ham dinner and the overall tone we kids loved to feel—that it was not an ordinary day but an exceptional one.

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Our own family tradition: Shredded wheat bird's nests with chocolate eggs (a bag of marshmallows, 3/4 stick of butter, microwave, crumble shredded wheat biscuits and stir until desired consistency. Form into baskets and dry on waxed paper)

Holidays are when I clearly feel the honor of carrying the torch—of repeating traditions and establishing the same kind of celebrations my parents created for us. And the beauty of doing it twenty some years later is that we have fun making it our own. I don’t practice my faith exactly like my parents practiced theirs and I respect and learn from friends who practice different faiths than mine, and yet we all make opportunities this time of year to create meaningful celebrations with our families and our children.

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Trying something new this year--painting some of our eggs.

There is music, there is good food, there are lessons we share, there are traditions we continue. I look forward to the next couple weeks and all the ways we make them special—all the ways we make them uniquely ours.

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Oh, there will still be ugly hats. There will still be candy. And hey, we live in Florida...let the palm fronds continue.

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Easter dinner, Passover Seder or whatever it is you celebrate…let it be colorful, let it be meaningful, let there be memories.

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What are your favorite Easter memories? Or, have you started new Easter traditions with your own family? Hallmark and I would love to hear your stories. In your comment, please share how you help make Easter a special occasion.

To see other Hallmark posts on this blog, click HERE.

127 comments:

jenrobburton said...

I definitely have the same memories of a new dress and shoes for Easter. It was the one holiday that we almost always got a new outfit for.

I love a good Easter egg hunt, and I think my 2-year-old will be into dying eggs this year for the first time.

Your painted ones are very cute, too.

If These Walls Spoke... said...

The painted eggs look adorable! And the pouty face over that hat is hilarious!

Poot & Boogie said...

EAster is one of my favourite holidays also, but really to this day I don't know why? maybe another excuse to make a turkey? When I was a teenager we started making ukranian Eater eggs I am not sure why we didn't do this earlier as we are partly ukranian, but anyways, it has been fun ever since. I also now have my own chickens, and people look forward to my colored farm fresh eggs for egg salad sandwiches on Eater Sunday after the kids find them.

Know that I am totally making your birds nests!

Life with Kaishon said...

Is it really time already? Oh my : ) We will have to dye eggs ASAP! Last year we did it 2 weeks after Easter : ( #parentingfail

Moosefan said...

My favorite thing with Easter was finding the "money" egg. There were these huge plastic eggs from the L'eggs Panty hose that we would get from Publix. The parents would mix those in and each one had money in it. Ranging from pennies to a brand new shiny silver dollar. I cannot find those L'egg eggs anymore, but we have carried that tradition on, except we now have the golden dollars and we call the money eggs the Golden Goose eggs.

NoBloggingJustReading said...

polyester pleated skirts for the win! I love that picture of you guys because it reminds me of my childhood Easters too. My grandmother adored hats and gloves & I was a mini-her :)

Lisa @ Heaven Sent said...

Ugly hats, matchy-matchy, white gloves, patent leather shoes and palm fronds...all part of my childhood as well. Easter egg hunts and brunch laid out on my grandma's washing machine and dryer. Good times!

Now that I'm older and don't go to church just because I'm supposed to, it means a lot more and I'm making sure my girls know that important part of it too. That's my first priority, but Easter would never be the same for me without egg hunts and frilly dresses. And maybe an ugly hat or two. ;)

Rachel said...

The Hilton sisters!!! Bahaha! That was a zinger! I'm still dying over here!

Egg hunts, focusing on how we believe that Jesus rose from the cross and lives in us!, coloring eggs, and loving on our babies!

Xoxo

Megan said...

Wow, it's totally clear to me now, Laney looks JUST like you!! That gorgeous (hee hee) Easter pic of you with the smirk....and her smirk a few pictures below...twins!

Malley's Chocolate, a local Cleveland favorite, is a staple in our house. Along with remembering around 8pm the night before Easter to boil the eggs...and then the kids are up too late decorating, I'm crabby trying to rush them to bed...maybe I'll start earlier this year! Thanks for the ideas! :)

Adventures In Babywearing said...

The Easter that will forever be in my memory is the one when I got a Cabbage Patch Doll in my Easter basket. I had never gotten anything that big or amazing, and it was the one I always wanted.

Steph

Jenny said...

Completely see Lainey in the first picture of you when you were younger...it's amazing the resemblance.

Favorite tradition as a kid - hearing "thumping" on the roof during the night and waking up to eaten carrots and eggs from the bunny. Later found out my Dad crawled up on the roof to make the sound of the bunny. ;)

After three boys, I am excited to celebrate my first Easter as the Mother of a daugther who I can dress up in lace and take lots of pictures of. Absolutely can't wait.

-Jenny in Iowa

Sally @ Us+House=Home said...

Wow, that photo of you as a little girl is all Lainey, Kelle! Gorgeous. Wishing you a beautiful Easter with your family. xo

Me said...

always remember ending up with a brutal set of bangs courtesy of my mom for Easter pictures - thanks mom! always LOVED getting a new dress for Easter.

Laura said...

Sunday finery, colored eggs, a blindfolded hunt for prizes around the yard, a huge delicious meal shared with anyone who will come, a remembrance and reverence for Christ's sacrifice.

Easter. It was always my second favorite, too.

Sandra said...

rashtache?!?! hahaha best word ever! perfect descriptor!

Maureen said...

That face of yours as a little girls is SO Lainey!! Oh my... two peas!!!

Kelly said...

That photo of you is Lainey with dark hair!! Never realized you look so much alike!

Monique said...

Oh you crack me up!! "Little House on the Prarie-meets-Golden-Girls." Okay really now-that is just too hilarious!! That photo of you and your sister reminds me so much of me and my twin sister (yes matchy-matchy all the way!!) Them were the days!!

Thank you for sharing your memories-it always brings back heart warming memories of my childhood...My one favorite Easter memory was when my sister and I (at the age of 5) joined our Grandma in her small town Easter Hat Parade. With the gentle guidance of a very crafty Grandma, my sis and I made these hideous (at the time gorgeous) Easter hats and wore them with pride as we marched down the small town street with Grandma by our side. Grandma's hat took home first prize!!
Love you Grandma...

Happy Easter memory making to you and yours Kelle

Cheers!
Monqiue

Kelly said...

Holy mother-daughter resemblance!! You look SO much like Lainey in that pic with your sister!

Jules said...

I have been reading your blog for WELL over a year now and am finally posting a comment. I am obviously not the first one to notice, but that first picture is COMPLETELY Lainey. Never will there be a question about who that beautiful little girl looks like.

Lisa said...

My favorite memory of Easter is the big hunt at my grandparents' house with my many cousins. The uncles would spend what felt like for.ever hiding plastic eggs outside while we kids waited inside until we could hardly stand it anymore. They would close all the blinds in the house while the hiding was going on, and we all pretended to hate that part, but I know we all secretly loved it because it added to the whole experience. They would finally knock at the door - the signal to go for it - and we'd go spilling out the door, screaming and tripping over each other. And, EVERY year,one of the uncles would get an egg stuck in a tree and would have to figure out how to get it down. I honestly think that may be where I got my mad problem solving skills.
Those kinds of memories are the ones that make me smile and make my heart hurt at the same time. :)

Oh, and "rashtache"?? HA!! My new favorite word. And the picture of you as a little girl looks exactly like Lainey, which I'm sure nobody has to tell you. :)

theaspirationalagnostic said...

Yep, Im jumping on the 'you and Lainey are identical' bandwagon- although I can see some Nella there as well. One of my children loves Easter more than even Christmas. He likes chocolate quite a bit....

Eva

Jennifer said...

All I can say is that the picture of you and your sister...yeah...that's Lainey with brown hair :-) She's lovely like her mama!

For us, Easter is rather superficial. We make baskets, dress up, join family for dinner. The faith based ceremony comes a week or so earlier on the solar Passover. Lamb (when we can), Lentils, communion and the celebration of the resurrection. Good times!

Jessica said...

Easter meant new Jelly shoes!! Pretty sure I had the same hat you did, and a fluffy dress. Sometimes we even wore white tights. I'm tempted to find a picture of my little sister & I now just for the good laugh. We ALWAYS went to church, my mom always hid our eggs around the living room and we got a few small presents and candy. After church we would make a ham dinner - and the years my parents got along, my dad got to stay :) Our tradition with our kids has been evolving as they are now 5 and 2 and just starting to understand the concept of God at all. I'm not a perfect Christian, and I strive to be better and a better example. And once we find a church here, I'm sure we'll go on Easter :)

Hazel said...

Carin looks far more disturbed by her Easter bonnet than you!
Like you my Easter memories revolve around church. In fact as a holiday I didn't think much of it as a break, my mother is a Catholic and my father an Anglican. We attended two churches. Therefore all the Easter services were doubled. Palm Sunday x2, Maundy Thursday x2, Good Friday X2, Easter Saturday (Catholics had their main service on the eve of the Sunday) and Easter Sunday. There were parades around the church holding palms, little palm crosses, feet washing (eww), somber sad services on the Friday, kissing the feet of a statue of Jesus (Catholic), candles, incense, and then Sunday was all happy music and that long wait to see what the Easter Bunny had delivered!
My mother insisted we couldn't do anything fun from Friday morning until Saturday evening. The only entertainment were bible movies. Fish for dinner on Friday.
We painted eggs to give to each other, (my sister were far more artistic than me), mine were always rather abstract interpretations of chickens or crosses or patterns.
By Monday all we wanted to do was stay in our pjs all day! So I'm not sure the message of Easter was getting through to me! LOL.
We lived next door to my aunt and uncle, and they lived next door to my grandparents. The good thing was they all went to town on buying us easter chocolate. We'd have 3 packages to look for out in the garden!
But my abiding memory of easter is the year my sister painstakingly unwrapped all her easter eggs and bunnies to keep the foil wrappers for crafting. She broke up the chocolate and placed it in an ice-cream container by our bedroom door.
It was just too much temptation for me to bear, each time I walked through the door I'd just take a little piece. I thought she wouldn't notice. sadly I must have walked though that door a few too many times.
My sister was mad! I'm sure I gave her all my uneaten chocolate but she still reminds me of this on occasion!

mary @ figwittage said...

I remember the Easter baskets! My grandmas had the best ones for me and my brothers! I also dreaded long Catholic masses.

Jillian22 said...

It is amazing to see the resemblance between you and Lainey in your "little girl" picture! Easter is always a special time of holiness and family. This year it will be a little harder- our first Easter without my grandfather. But we will still hide Easter eggs, dress in our finest, and sing to the church rafters knowing that he is celebrating right beside us.

Peeper said...

Looking for plastic eggs in my grandmothers yard with my cousins.
Making babka with my mother and aunts.
Getting the babka, egg cheese, butter, pickled horseradish and rolls blessed.
My mom painstakingly pulling apart cotton to look like the Easter bunny had left some fur when he visited in the night.
I loved getting new white sandals every year. That was the best.

Last year we dyed eggs using all natural stuff we already had in the kitchen (onion skins, beets, tumeric) It took a long time - too long for a 3 year old to tolerate!
It rained last year so no egg hunt in Golden Gate Park but maybe this year.

Beth Hontzas Photography, Inc. said...

I LOVE this! My sister and I always had to pose by the rose bush in our Easter sailor dresses. And I LOVE seeing your childhood pic. Lainey looks just like you!

5boysand1girlmake6.com said...

ohh the traditions! We paint wooden eggs every year. I love pulling out the old ones from the box. We make easter sugar cookies and we rock out SPRING BREAK every year! Love the post, the eggs, the nests Everything!

Darcee said...

I also recall the Easter dresses, tights, patent shoes, and yes, some years, the awful hats. Easter was always a special holiday growing up, but not my favorite. I loved the church going all week for the different services leading up to it. I have grown into a more spiritual way of thinking, but still fondly look back on those Easter Sundays at church.

I totally get the palm frond fascination, as I grew up in Iowa. However, after living in Vegas for 5 years, and now CA, I see them all the time. No more novelty.

I have carried on the traditions I had as a child, for all holidays. For Easter, each childs basket is hidden in a different place (weather permitting, outside). In the morning, when they wake up and leave their room, there is a jelly bean trail leading all over the house. Some of the trails are dead ends, some lead to plastic eggs filled with goodies, and there is a trail to each of their baskets. Rules are, if you find a siblings, you have to keep quiet and keep looking for yours. The kids love it. Even my teenager still finds it fun. I was going to stop doing it for him last year, and he balked. He (obviously), doesn't believe in the bunny anymore, and loves to help out hiding his brother and sisters baskets.

Oh, and the kids don't just get candy in their baskets, they get some sort of gift too. Sometimes a book, jewelry for my girlie girl, a video game.

I have to get a move on, it's coming up quick!!

Jenny said...

Growing up, our easter baskets consisted of tons and tons of fruit. Good fresh fruit is tough to find here sometimes, and the fact that we got everything from kiwi to whole coconuts and pineapples was pretty special. We could have chocolate any time! The whole family would have a huge fruit breakfast before church, and I always wore a brand new easter dress that my dad bought for me. I think he would still buy me an easter dress if I would let him! This year, my daughter got a package in the mail. Yep, an easter dress. Will she be getting a basket full of fruit? You'd better believe it!

Francesca said...

My Easter memories are Italian Easter memories. The big lunch with huge chocolate eggs (2 feet tall) with inside a little surprise, typically bracelets, games, puzzles... And then my grandma speech, the same every year, about her childhood when she was working in a chocolaterie and she was eating a lot of chocolate while she was wrapping little bars. Lovely easter memories.

Tara said...

oh...my daddy was a preacher too... this brings back so many memories :)

Christie said...

Ahhhh Easter....it is right up there with Christmas. Not only is it wonderful because of the egg hunts, the baskets, and of course...the chocolate. But, it also reminds me of how everything seems new. Somehow, everything seems brighter and life seems a little clearer. By the way, all I can say is "wow" to the resemblance between you and Lainey :)

Rosanna said...

Easter for my family is about tradition - mass on Sunday morning, an easter egg hunt for the little ones (my son is 5 months old and I can't wait until next year when he can participate!), and a huge delicious dinner. I love going home for Easter!

Hailey @ Me and My Boys said...

We had the palm branches every year, and even though we're in the South, we're not near the beach. So I'm not sure where they got them??
We've been getting together with my entire family on my dad's side every year since before I was born. My "Mammaw" makes a feast, kids hunt eggs, grownups play cornhole, and we just enjoy being together.
And of course, for us, we celebrate the deeper meaning behind Easter. But the chocolate is a nice perk.

Krysie G said...

Every year for Easter, my sisters and I would go to my grandma's house and make an Easter Bunny Cake. My grandma would make 2 round cakes. Cut one into ears and a bowtie, frost them, and then we would decorate it with gumdrops and coconut and other fun things.
That's my favorite memory, and this year I will be doing that exact tradition with my niece and nephew

Julie said...

Okay - Hilton sisters comment and "hosanna" with the palm fronds got a laugh out loud from me. Fun post. I want to try painting the eggs! My little guy is old enough for the first time to have fun with easter. Going to start some great traditions!

Michelle@gigglegumgirls said...

I really don't have a lot of easter memories from my childhood. Actually, I don't really have a lot of memories from my childhood at all. That is what makes having my own children so special. I get to make memories with them. (I get a little memory crazy). My husbands family however, they have the most fun easter. My favorite thing they do is instead of tons of kids knocking each other down and fighting over who can get more eggs, they hide a special eggs for each child. Usually a certain color or specialty plastic egg (bugs,cars) You only look for yours, and the prizes aren't cheap candy or jelly beans. They are money and candy. When it's all done the kids get to shop at the easter store with their money or keep it. My girls look forward to it every year.
I really can attribute my "making memory-itis" to you. You opened my eyes up to a whole new world of cheese is good. :) The more elaborate the better, and who cares what other people think.
I'm having so much fun!

Kelly Cach said...

Yep, you and Lainey.....TWINSIES! And the "rashstache" made me laugh in a really high pitch. Oh, man....do I ever have grade school pics of THAT! Always.

Charlie Brown's Easter and The Easter Bunny is Coming to Town (or something like that.....the one where Vincent Price is the voice of the evil bunny who turns all the eggs an army green??? With the same kind of animation as the original Rudolph?) Anybody else remember those? Watching those movies and my dad hiding our eggs for the hunt are my two favorite memories.....even when the final egg wasn't found until MONTHS later--stinkin' up the fake moss in the fake plant :)

We color eggs (Eli picked out a tie dye and glitter kit this year :) and we leave a trail of chocolates starting outside their bedroom door which then leads them down the stairs and into the living room for an egg hunt. We are having to get more creative with our hiding spots the older they get, but I bet they'll never want us to stop this tradition.

Jannice said...

You and your sister must laugh at that picture...your sister looks less than happy!!

What I remember most about Easter traditions...the usual - eggs to dye, eggs hunts, waking to find our baskets - freezing the hollow bunny and the peeps - oh frozen peeps are the best! so snappy!! My mom is Greek Orthodox but we were raised Catholic...so we celebrated both - now I get to do the same with my girls. Oh - and we would always sneak some candy into church to eat during mass!
I can relate to the white shoes - not to be worn before Easter - Heaven forbid you get those big ugly black scuffs! new dress, bonnet, little purse, gloves...oh yeah - I do the same to my girls now! My little one eats it up - my 7 year old - not so into it!!

Love is all you need said...

I see so much of Lainey in that picture of you! We love to do our recap of the week before Jesus died ending with his resurrection on Sunday. And we do a night time egg hunt with glow in the dark eggs! It's the best!

April Vernon said...

As a child, the new dress to wear Easter Sunday was always such a big deal. Knowing what it meant to me, my husband has re-instituted the tradition. Now I get to go buy myself a new dress each year!

Joshua and Jamie said...

I remember getting an Easter basket each year with fun toys in it. It was fun but I'm glad that my children will know that there is so much more to Easter. Easter is about celebrating a Savior who came to bring us life, joy, love and the best relationship we could have.

gina said...

I love your Easter nest tradition---brilliant idea!

ShaunaQ said...

My mom didn't do Easter baskets. Too ordinary. So she would fill new wicker laundry baskets with grass, candy, and chocolates. Or one year she filled upside down umbrellas with grass and presents. One year it was little purses. And there was almost always a toothbrush and Pez.

My kids get the same thing.

Oh, and so does my husband. He was raised in a devoutly religious home with a mom that believed the Easter bunny was of Satan and Easter was to be about Jesus and Jesus only.

Then he got his first basket from yours truly and he was in disbelief. He couldn't believe it was for him. Now one of his favorite holidays is Easter.

A Daft Scots Lass said...

Your eggs are gorgeous. I have many Easter memories of rolling our boiled eggs down the hill at our local park

Lovely Love said...

You were being such a jokester in this post, heh heh, i loved it! For me, easter was about all the cousins getting together. Wearing frilly clothes and huge huge bows on our heads. Going to church by my grandma's house and being terribly bored in there. even falling asleep at times, but knowing exactly when they were going to let the doves out. My only favorite part of church on Easter because a. i love animals and b. it was an indication that church was almost over. After that we would go to the park and have a picnic, just the moms and the kids. Easter was always just the moms and the kids. Come to think of it i have no idea why. hmmm i should ask. Most likely the dads didn't want to come i think lol. anywho after the picnic there was egg hunts and smashing of confetti eggs on our heads. someone always ended up hurt and someone always ended up crying. we have videos of this, very hilarious to watch by the way. then we would get our basket of goodies and we would all share and talk about what we got. then it was back home to sleep a deep sleep from a tiring and exciting day. my mom always makes every holiday special because she always gives us a card no matter what holiday and a present. even on easter when we already had so many goodies. im 26 years old and she still does it. i love her. bless her little soul. as for what traditions we will hold? i don't know but im excited to find out! My son is 2.5 now so I know this time around we can really have some fun. He really wasn't very interested last year. it was more about exploring stuff. now he wants to do stuff. i'll let ya know :)

joyfullyyours said...

Easter is my favourite holiday - I think mostly because of what isn't all tied up in it.

At Easter - no one is fussing to have the halls decked, the perfect tree found, the presents wrapped and just the right amount of schmaltz attached to it. It's a time to be deeply thankful for the One who gave everything He had so that we could have a relationship with the God who created us.

To me - that's enough. The time with family (if there is any), and the food- well that's quite secondary to the events of that morning. It's all about the celebration of Life over Death!

Lesley said...

Easter memories (in no particular order):
Hollow chocolate eggs filled with sweets
Church
New dresses
Shiny shoes
Baked ham
Jellybeans (which I hate the taste of but love the look of..they are a shallow sweet, it's all about image - no substance!)
Cartoon specials on TV

The Easter Bunny always left us a trail to follow (usually of aforementioned disgusting but shiny jelly beans), which eventually led to a big - ish treat. One year I got "peaches and cream barbie" and thought I had gone to heaven!

Happy Easter Hampton family!

Just Glory said...

About half the time we (my sister and I) went to sunrise service with our grandma. We hated this super-early trek to church, BUT the church was always filled with the scent of Easter lilies on this day, which I'm still in love with, AND getting out of church early meant we got started on the fun part early. I'm just going to ignore all the Easters AFTER my parents got divorced and use our pre-divorce Easters for memories. Our grandmother would have us over the night or two before, along with our favorite cousin, and we'd color 4 or 5 dozen eggs. My grandparents had a HUGE lawn, front and back, flower beds and gardens galore, and it was THE BEST PLACE for hiding Easter eggs. When all of my cousins came over, there were 8 of us, and we could hunt eggs for hours. Reluctant adults would hide all of them (except the ones that ended up busted) over and over and over again for us. It was nonstop egg hunting all day (almost nonstop- my great-grandmothers would come over and all the women would get in the kitchen and cook a HUGE Easter feast- we stopped for that- and the deviled eggs were especially delicious on Easter). Easter was one of my favorite holidays, too.
Now, I share my girls with their father in North Carolina, and I only get them every other year. Our own traditions aren't yet well established, as I've struggled for years with my inability to create the amazing holidays I had as a young child, and I know I need to let go of the past and just get on that and make it special.

Special K said...

Myabe it's not "childlike" but "innocent and honest" that's truly the adult Down Syndrome quality. I liked your conversation with your husband. I think some people do worry "will they never grow up and move out?" Seems most people do move into their own lives. But truly, if they don't, why would that be a bad thing? My 8 year old Logan tells me daily "Mom, when I grow up I'm going to build us houses next to each other. With a bridge for you to come visit." His grandparents don't live next door, but they all have a piece of his life, and this is a wonderful life to live as a kid. Always love your pictures and blog, excited about the book coming soon!

Ginny said...

Did anyone else's bunny leave an easter candy in their bedroom slipper? Ours did, so we knew for sure first thing that he had come!

kmrf said...

So have pictures in the fully synthetic easter finery. What happened to cotton in the late 70's early 80's?
Loved Easter because it included some of my favorite things: dresses, chocolate and church. Yes I am the freak show that liked tights and froof dresses and sitting in Church.

Shari said...

My childhood Easter memories are much like yours the dress and the hat and the tights lol. However, with my kids we do the paint the eggs and hide the eggs but we still like to remember what the true meaning of Easter to us. My favorite part of Easter Sunday is to watch my kids hunting for their eggs and the squeals of delight when one is found.

Claire said...

At the moment my Easter tradition is to journey up to my boyfriend's family for a buffet lunch and good times. Lovely.

muvie said...

Memories of Easter are all about pretty Easter dresses and shoes. Of course, the Easter basket was always filled with jelly beans, those horrible colored candy Easter eggs that everyone else loved and, of course, the chocolate Easter bunny. Lainey looks just like you!!!!! Of course, the hair color is different. I love your creativity with the girls. Their memories are going to be so special! Hope your Easter is a happy one.

Tami said...

As a fellow PK, I very vividly remember being up too early for the Easter Sunrise Service! And the dresses/hats, etc??? Those were some of my fanciest days. Been downhill from there! Your descriptions of the music, purses filled with chapstick, and parents making the day SO special...this post made me feel like you were telling MY story. Loved everything about it!

Thee FireWife said...

Easter to me was always a reminder of my parent's divorce. It was a day we had to spend with my dad, because it was his holiday. I'm trying, as an adult, to make my own traditions. One of them is Cake Week 2012 (http://theefirewife.blogspot.com/2012/03/cake-week-2012-rules-regulations.html). From now on, the week of Easter shall always be cake week to me. I'll do what I can to make it colorful!

Meredith said...

Oh my, I So hate my mother for some of the ridiculous things she made my sister and I wear. But...some awesome pics from those days that still make us laugh and an insistence on my part that our kids will always wearing matching stuff--and yes, I have a boy and a girl, so that could get very tricky and weird as they get older :)

Becca Dickson said...

That photo of you looks JUST like Lainey with darker hair! I am with you on the gloves and hats and purses filled with chapstick. I found a hat and gloves for my 1 year old for Easter but she refuses to put them on. I'm determined! ;) Also those shredded wheat baskets are genius! I need to try those out!

Jolene said...

We actually MOVED the Easter Traditions this year...we're doing them on the first day of Spring for now on...the eggs, the baskets and all that. I really feel like its getting in the way of celebrating Resurrection Sunday. Also, this year my oldest turns 10 ON Easter. It won't happen again until she's 89.

I just didn't want so much competing for attention. Celebrating our Lord and having my daughter turn 10. We actually liked doing the baskets early...so I think we're keeping it that way!

Melissa Pitz said...

Easter is by far my favorite holiday. I'm 21 and I can't remember a year I haven't searched for my Easter Basket. It's something my mom has always done for my brother and I, and something I'll definitely do for my children.

Erin said...

I have always loved Easter, and I think it's probably my favorite holiday. To which MANY people are shocked. I grew up going to church weekly and so the special new dresses, hats, and sometimes GLOVES were such a big deal for Easter Sunday. I loved the memories of going over to a relatives house and easter egg hunting with all my cousins.

Now that I'm a newlywed, my hubby and I still make easter baskets for each other, and we still spend the morning in church and Celebrating our Lord! I look forward to starting "family" traditions around Easter once we have our own kids.

JessSch said...

Love this post! Every year for Easter, my dad buys me an orchid corsage, which he's been doing since I was about five or six - I'm going to be 42 in April so that's a LOT of corsages! They are getting hard to find, those orchids dressed up with ribbons with the plastic tubes full of water in the gold boxes, but he manages and I get one every year. :) Also, my aunt and I watch "The Ten Commandments" together every year as well - we started a drinking game where you have to drink every time Yul Brenner puts his hands on his hips, but my mom put a stop to that, saying it's disrespectful to drink watching Biblical epics. Happy Easter to you and yours!

Cydney said...

Lainey has your eyes, for certain!

"Because He Lives" is one of my favorites... reminds me of Easter and Mother's Day services at my grandparents' church. :)

Catie said...

Lainey looks just like you!! Wow... Never seen it before!
Love the tradition of dying eggs, hunting eggs, new Easter clothes, shoes & so on... :)

Danyiel said...

Your sister looks like an extra on Working 9 to 5, although those who live in glass houses which I did as a child. Oh, some of those outfits. Our egg hunts always end up inside because it's so blustery cold or raining, but we are very hope this year we will make it outside. We color eggs with Grandpa since he likes it so much, the kids are over loaded with baskets that are mostly filled with clothes, toys and a few sugary treats. Looking forward to this year with a 3 and 2 year old, excited to see them both hunt for eggs be it in the house or in outside loveliness.

Appleseed's Adventure said...

I love everything about Easter. We have a 1 and 3 year old - a girl and boy and we cannot wait to have fun this year! Easter eggs hunts are my favorite. My in-laws put lottery tickets into eggs for the adults and it is a blast :)

Appleseed's Adventure said...

I love everything about Easter. We have a 1 and 3 year old - a girl and boy and we cannot wait to have fun this year! Easter eggs hunts are my favorite. My in-laws put lottery tickets into eggs for the adults and it is a blast :)

AJB19 said...

I just LOVE reading your words! They inspire and ignite a passion in me to be an awesome mama...my baby is almost 3 months so it's a learning process! I hope one day to be as amazing as you are with your girls!
Easter has surpassed Christmas as my favorite holiday in the past few years...crazy right! Mostly because at Christmas we rush around, trying to spend quality time with each of our families whereas Easter is more laid back, more about the reason we celebrate and I throughly enjoy that. LOVE the photo of you and your sister...reminds me of me and mine, matchy-matchy!!

Rik said...

As Kelle's dad, I will have to say I have deep regrets so many holidays found my first energies invested in church activities and what was left, was given to the family. I envied those dads who could just enjoy the holiday. My children, being "preacher's kids" had to wait until I was "off stage" to really enjoy the fun of those holidays also central to church life. And those outfits--why we felt we needed to make our little girls look like the ladies of the bridge club, I will never know. Carin looks in pain in that photo--and she probably was. Like cardboard dress up dolls, they let us dress them up! But I, I always thought them beautiful and still do! Thank you, Kelle, for forgetting the times you kids were rushed to be on time, left to sit by yourselves while mom and dad did their thing, and then waited for the church doors to be locked and for us to go home. I too cherish all the memories and sometimes wish I could have a "do-over" and really do it right. A shout out to all other PK's...and a big embrace for those whose memories are of Passover and a grand Seder gathering. It's all good!

--Poppa

bubblytoes28 said...

Our family makes bird's nests, too! Except ours our peanut butter and chocolate with shredded wheat and jelly beans for the eggs :)

Lissa said...

I love Easter! It's my favorite even over Christmas. I think being in Michigan has a lot to do with it being my favorite. So many years I remember Easter being one of the first true Spring days of the year. We've also done the palms for Palm Sunday (braiding palms anyone?), and new dresses and shoes.

For my boys, we will do a few egg hunts (one with the cousins), church, new outfits in all their pastel glory, dying eggs, and for this year we'll make a yarn-egg garland (love Pinterest) and "Egg" the neighbors (like "booing" the neighbors at Halloween). I love it all!

Kerry said...

HILARIOUS! I have gone back twice to look at the expression on your sister's face, it really couldn't be funnier. And wow, in that picture you are totally a brunette Lainey!

Kellie said...

just saw that you are going to be a speaker at the IHF conference in Dallas!!!! YAY YAY YAY! That pretty much decided that i will go :)

Annie said...

I have many similar memories - my sisters decked out in our Easter finery, including hats and even muffs to keep our hands warm if Easter was earlier in the spring.
My favorite was waking up early in the morning, grabbing our baskets and moving to search our 'section' if the room where the Easter Bunny left us treats to fill our basket with. There were four of us girls, so two split the dining room and two split the living room. Jelly beans lined up along the buffet, peeps tucked by the records near the record player.
And now, I have SO much fun recreating this for my children. And this year I'm excited to add those nests - they look fantastic!

Tara Michaels said...

I love dyeing eggs, attending the village egg hunt, finding pretty dresses for my girls, and hiding baskets. We decorate the house and go to church! It is a memorable holiday! Easter Bunny always brings a pair of fun spring/summer jammies and a few other small things that can fit in the basket! (St.Nick brings the special winter jammies)

genderist said...

My parents dressed us in matching Easter dresses & ghetto-fabulous hats, too. (my daughter claims one of our old white lace Easter hats as her Woody the cowgirl hat. I love it.)

booksatthepaperhouse.com said...

My favorite Easter memories are ones of my sister and me slipping into our Easter dresses, tights and gloves - that had all been laid out the night before - and sitting like angels during mass, going home and waiting patiently while mom served a beautiful brunch and not getting an ounce of pineapple cake on our white handkerchiefs.
Actually, that's not true.
We were ALWAYS completely jacked up on candy throughout the entire hour-long mass - our poor dresses practically announcing as much with the chocolate stains smeared all over our fronts.
And I honestly hope to continue that tradition with my children, complete with the chocolate stains, Easter egg induced fights and church-pew fidgets fests.

Balanced Britt said...

PS - that picture of little you looks so much like Lainey!

Molly said...

Easter fajitas! It started the year my baby girl was born, and I'm adopting this idea for all major holidays. When there's just four of you, and only two can/ will eat the main course, don't make a six-dish meal. Make fajitas. :)

Janita said...

I can't decide on my favourite...the term "rashstache" or the photo of you and Carin. I laughed so hard I may have released a little urine. Why is it that I want to dress my daughter in that outfit? I'm crying over here. It's too much. Tell me she's not wearing red tights. Then I will die. xo

Lindsey @ The Hill House said...

I totally remember having to wear all the lace and frilly socks and having to stand in front of the church with my sister to have our pictures made. As much as I hated it then, I now LOVE making my boys dress up in their khakis and loafers and taking their pictures in front of the church. I love the hustle and bustle of hiding eggs from the Easter Bunny and hunting for them after Sonrise service. I hope to make my kids' Easter, and all holidays, as memorable as mine. And yes, I thought you had put a dark wig on Lainey in that first picture.

Rik said...

Janita, t'was a no brainer--complimenting red tights leading down to white shoes, explaining her pained "Would someone just shoot me" expression. She was thankful it would be another 365 days 'til the next Easter wardrobe fail!

The guilty half of the polyester parents,

Poppa

Caroline said...

You look SO much like Lainey in that picture! :)

Kimmy said...

I will always remember our Easter Egg hunts, our colorful Easter baskets filled with plastic grass and candy, sitting on our dining room table. My four siblings and I would run all over our house finding the eggs that the Easter Bunny(our parents) hid. One of my sisters was not very good at finding eggs even if they were sitting in the middle of the floor. So, the three of us would give her some of the eggs we had found. To this day she still can not find Easter Eggs during a hunt. Lots of fun!!

Chad & Cassidy said...

"Little House on the Prarie-meets-Golden Girls fabulousness" I almost died laughing! Thanks! We {me and my sis} always had the dresses too.

Jen said...

My grandma makes and sells chocolates for Easter, and I always assumed that the Easter bunny ordered his chocolate from her - because even though I knew the bunny brought our baskets, I knew it was Gramma P's chocolate! (took a long time to put two and two together!)

Our first baby will be here in about 18 weeks, and I can't wait to start new traditions with her! My husband is Polish, so for Easter we will do a big Polish dinner. and color eggs - because even though we don't have kids yet, I still make him dye eggs!

love reading your blog!

Jennie said...

I'm 29 years old, and my sister is 27 - we're long since moved away, but when we come home for Easter dinner my mom still hides eggs for us. NUFF SAID! Hahaha!

Great old picture by the way :-D

Em said...

Wow - it is like seeing a brown-haired version of Lainey in that first picture!

Growing up in Kentucky we coloured Easter eggs with crayons, then dipped them in dye - the crayon colours are amazing post-dye. I now live in Australia and while I've continued this tradition with my own family here, it's not quite the same with brown eggs. Thus every year I find myself longing for white eggs again!

Shannon said...

Holy cow! Laney with dark hair!! And I have to say I love that you are rocking the same hair style you did back then:) I know its changed inbetween, but you can sure pull off that long hair with a full bang

JenandAsh said...

I am not religious anymore. I was raised Methodist, but neither my husband or I are anything near observant of any religion.

But my best Easter memories are of waking up before dawn on Easter Sunday, getting warmly dressed (in the Northeast), and going to my church where out in an open field there was a huge rock and a large cross where we had a sunrise service. Then we'd have breakfast in the community hall. Afterwards we'd go home, get dressed in our Easter best, and head back to church.

Ash901 said...

Of course there are church memories with floppy hats that I wouldn't leave on my head, but my biggest best memories are the crazy games my Mom sets up for us ( yes, she still does it). We have egg toss, roll an egg with your nose, carry the egg on the spoon, and always egg knocking! Such great fun!!

Ash901 said...

Of course there are church memories with floppy hats that I wouldn't leave on my head, but my biggest best memories are the crazy games my Mom sets up for us ( yes, she still does it). We have egg toss, roll an egg with your nose, carry the egg on the spoon, and always egg knocking! Such great fun!!

Seitvonzu said...

No contest-- Easter is my *favorite* holiday. every since graduate school i've thrown a champagne brunch and easter egg hunt. it's evolved over the years--going from an adult only affair to now a predominately "family" (i.e., children) dominated event :) we make all the wonderful traditional ham dinner food, plus yummy brunch foods, and desserts (we have our own version of bird's nests too-- butterscotch chips/chocolate chips & chow mein noodles with 3 cadbury mini eggs on top. my husband can't have chocolate anymore, so i tried your shredded wheat version tonight- very yummy and so cute! more realistic than the ones we make really...) everyone arrives, has some punch or a mimosa, we feed the kids and ourselves. then we have the big egg hunt at a park about a block away. then come back for dessert and egg opening (and some years prizes, and some years egg dying ...if the weather is nice adn we can do that on the deck, otherwise, i skip it) everyone goes home loaded down with candy, prizes, easter egg loot, favors, etc. it's like reverse christmas and we consider it our gift to our friends. last year i started telling my daughter that we ARE the easter bunny ;) she is now four and really enjoys helping me plan/decorate,etc. (that started last year... i have a bunch of pictures in an album labeled "easter sweatshop"-- our favorite time of the year) planting things, warmer days, sticky sweet candy and rich creamy candy, bubbly drinks, plastic eggs (this year our theme is "eggs" so i even have them hanging from my basement ceiling by invisible thread) am i the longest comment? i just love easter. i could talk about it all day. about a week before fat tuesday a friend sees me at preschool drop off and says "it's almost lent, you must be so happy!" :) yes, my love of easter is legend :)

Claire @ Scissors Paper Rock said...

Oh my...that photo of you & your sis....I can see so much of Lainey in you!!!!!!! CUTE!!!!
I just got home from a fun morning at my daughter's Kindy as we celebrated Easter in true 4 year old style. It was FAB! I'm gonna have smile wrinkles from today's antics!
x
http://blog.scissorspaperrockdesigns.com.au/

Lisa Coleman Boutilier said...

I think I had the same hat and dress! LOL We always got new Sunday clothes, rushed off to Easter mass and then home to play with our new outside toys while my Dad cooked dinner.

This year we're hosting dinner and my kids are getting outside toys and homemade clothes and treats from the bunny who may or may not leave a few jelly bean "poops" on the living room rug!

Rebekah said...

My parents always made Easter extra special, Witch church, dressing up, all the usual excitement for a Christian household. My sister and I have now discovered we are Jewish and we celebrate both Passover and Eater. I really, really enjoy learning about our family history and tradition's I didn't grow up with.

mjb said...

Tradition: 1. raise kids to age 10-14 years of age and still dye eggs
2.hunt real eggs for two rounds
3. have a egg fight:children vs adults
4. watch lots of birds come to your yard
5. smile

Janita said...

Rik,
I just had to resuscitate myself...I seriously need help because I cannot stop laughing. I think you tied her bow too tight. It appears as though she's slowly being asphyxiated. Carin, I'm laughing with you, not at you. You are laughing, right? ;) Ah, it was all done with love so that's all that really matters. Says the girl who was also dressed in all sorts of horrific, pardon me, lovely outfits. Although mine never matched this well.

Donna O. said...

Easter was always white (yellow one year!) patent leather shoes, bad Easter bonnets and Saunder's solid chocolate bunnies all around. When my own kids were little, I made powdered bunny prints (with a cardboard cutout "paw print" and kitchen flour)hopping into and out of our house. I did it no matter what the weather was like and the kids loved it as much, or more, than the egg hunt or even the candy. They were always so excited to see which way the bunny came in and left again. Oh how I miss those days. They're 22, 21 and 17 now...Don't think they'll be looking for prints this year! Happy Easter to you and yours and must say I'm amazed at how much Lainey looks like you. I'd never noticed until I saw that Easter picture tonight....Happy Spring from "the mitten" ~

Donna O. said...

That would be "Sander's" chocolate...No "u." If you're from Michigan - you know that! Sorry, it's late! Happy Easter!

Summers Family said...

At our house, the Easter bunny leaves a jelly bean trail from the kids' bedroom doors to their baskets. We also put change in the plastic eggs to cut down on sugar. I think we might try painting the eggs this year too, thanks for the idea!

fordreamsofmountains said...

I was lucky to grow up in a village which was big on Easter traditions. Every Easter Saturday we had the bonnet competition, the egg rolling and the boat race (tiny wooden boats which raced from the end of our garden along a stream to the town lake) That was all followed by Easter tea, then of course an egg hunt on Easter Sunday morning in our huge garden (at least, it felt huge at that age!)
My husband doesn't care that much about Easter but our kids are going to get these traditions all the way!

Talia said...

You and I certainly had a similar childhood. The picture of you and your sister is precious. A keeper and frame worthy for sure.

Easter traditions include church, Easter baskets - still even at 20 and 23 - and a family dinner complete w/ham. Traditions after all must be kept.

Lovely post. A sweet trip down memory lane.

LoriAngela said...

I always loved Easter, too, and tried to make it special for my kids. This year my husband and I are travelling to Mexico to build a foster home with Project Help Mexico, and our project fell over the Easter weekend. My kids are in university, but I still had wanted to hide eggs.

Erika . . . with a K said...

I love the big ole Easter hats! What beautiful eggs! My daughter informed me the other day that dying Easter eggs is so boring and we need to paint them this year!

Polar Bear said...

Every Easter my grandma made a lamb cake. After dinner my brothers, cousins, and I would always fight over the butt! :o)

I have continuted making the lamb cake every year. The first year my sister-in-law celebrated Easter with us she was in charge of cutting the lamb cake. My poor sister-in-law cut the head off first. There was dead silence as we all stood in shock and horror looking at the headless lamb cake. We still laugh about it 15 years later.

Lamb cakes are definitely my favorite tradition for Easter. It carries so many fond memories, and now more memories to come with my son.

I enjoyed your post ~ I enjoy all of your post for that matter. Have a Happy Easter.

Andy and Jenni said...

Have you seen the dyed egg shell crafts, where you save the shell and smash it to create mosaic pieces to glue on paper? Looks right up your alley!
I saw it here first:
http://www.thislittlemiggy.com/2012/03/egg-shell-flower-art-tutorial.html

Thomas-Louis et Émilie-Anne said...

When I was young, we always went to a brunch at my grandma's. I liked it. But my favorite Easter memory is this one: my parents bought us presents (other than chocolate) and organize a treasure hunt in the house. They wrote clues and we had to figure out where our presents were. It was great!
Because I was about to have my first child on Easter, 2009, and I couldn't go to the city where I come from to see my family, I organized a brunch myself with my sister and dad. Now, I do the same each year. It's really fun to be together (with my mom too, and her boyfriend, and my sister's girlfriend, and the kids...) and I like it!

Unknown said...

Lainey looks so much like you did as a little girl. I love all the memories you are creating with your family. Thanks for the inspiration.

maplewalnutmama said...

Oh my - those Easter outfits are priceless! Best that you posted them rather than have someone blackmail you with them :)
Easter's of my past: watercolour paints on hard-boiled eggs, hunting for shiny, tin-foil wrapped chocolate eggs and a new frilly easter dress.
Easter this year: an outdoor easter egg hunt with new neighbourhood friends and hopes for sunshine so we are hunting in a west-coast downpour!
Chocolately wishes to your girls this Easter

Averyl Minori said...

Ok....I am inspired! We always do eggs, Saturday is the day!

sasa418 said...

I always tried to figure out who little Lainey looked like, and after seeing that picture of you as a child it hit me - YOU! She's definitely her mama.

Lo Mc said...

I thought this was something that you and all of your blog followers could appreciate, Kelle!

http://benseyleb.blogspot.com/2012/03/defending-silver-lining-part-2.html

Oh what the power of girlfriends can do!!

Eat My Scabs said...

The old Easter pic is killing me...I have one just like it! I love old pictures. And I'll be making some shredded wheat birds nests this weekend!

my family wasn't too big on traditions since my children were born I've been making it up as i go.

CoyGirl said...

I just laughed out loud (REALLY obnoxiously) in Starbucks :) THANKS! You're funnnnnny.

"Actually that's not true."-- haha

Dylan'sMommy316 said...

I always loved when we got to go pick out an egg dye kit every year so we could dye our eggs. It's a tradition we've started with our son now. This year should be even better now that he can really understand it (at the age of 3).

bamoorman said...

There were 6 of us growing up, and me being the baby, there was a good 10 or 11 years age difference from the oldest child. Somehow you have to make Easter fun for no matter the age group, and we all still received Easter baskets. The older ones would always take us to the church Easter Egg Hunt and help us find eggs....then of course there was the food! I use to pig out on some deviled eggs....YUM!

My Secret Rooms said...

Over here Easter is a whole lot of fun also! I think it's in second place, on our holiday-list as well :-)
My boy especially loves searching for the egg that the Easter-bunny hid in the garden. It's always loaded with candy and a small toy, that he really wants.

The painting of eggs is fun and the decoration of the Easter rice is also good fun.

Easter really is the rite of passage - of all rites of passages - to spring!

Cathy K. said...

I'm Greek Orthodox and Easter is our most involved holiday. Traditions are everywhere. It kicks off with "Clean Monday," a day where we eat nothing but olives, halva, special bread, and assorted vegetables. This happens 40 days before Easter and marks the beginning of lent. We begin going to church more frequently, always on Good Friday and Saturday a little before midnight. We carry candles and walk around the neighborhood. I remember LOVING this as a kid and I still look forward to it because of how the Greek community unites. On Easter, we have a lamb... on a spit. Just like in My Big Fat Greek Wedding - there are even loud Greek aunts. Of course, there are colored eggs.

A Greek Easter tradition you might want to try with the girls is a simple egg cracking game. You each select an egg and tap it on the others. One of them will crack! Repeat on the other side, and then repeat with other members of the family. See whose egg is the strongest of the bunch!

Happiness is... said...

So does anyone remember the technicolor egg salad?!? Oh how I dreaded that and gave my mom the "you must be kidding me" look when she told me enthusiastically to eat up.

I love Easter. My parents did a great job of pushing the religious purpose of the holiday, but letting us have fun. My mom was great at creating that purposeful balance. I remember getting really dressed up and then being told not to move; my mom feared that her tom boy would get a run the white tights or get grass stains everywhere in 3.5 seconds flat. I remember those L'egg eggs. Our church always had a hunt and there was always one mungo L'egg eggs stuffed with candy - one for each age group. I remember standing underneath the cherry tree, posing for family pictures, and watching the petals fall off like pink snow.

I love creating traditions for Alex. I am making her dress this year, and we've already died eggs twice. (third time tomorrow!) For her first Easter, I sewed felt Easter eggs to hang in our windows and sewed a peep banner for the hearth. And there's church and trying like my mom to create a purposeful balance.

Thanks Kelle. Simply love your writing. More so your creative heart.

-Jennifer

SuperMilf said...

LOL!! LOVE the pic of you and your sister, priceless!
The bird nests are a GREAT idea! Must try!

Beth said...

Congratulations to you such a great accomplishment!

HollyKPalmer said...

Just bought your book!! So excited to read it!! I have a long plane ride next Wednesday and I am saving it...Cheers! Holly