Where’s your Easter Bonnet?

An Easter bonnet in a shop window in Conway.

An Easter bonnet in a shop window in Conway. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Believe it or not, going to Mass on Easter Sunday was an exciting time for me growing up in the 60s. It seemed as if the entire church was magically transformed. Gone were the dark cloths covering the altar and crucifix and up were the beautiful white lilies and joyous music.

Even the faithful were transformed. Little girls proudly displayed their new Easter dresses and hats while their moms wore white gloves and heels and their fathers looked just a bit taller in their suits. We used to fast in those days before Mass so there were no Easter egg hunts or Easter baskets until we came home from church. But that was okay as we were so excited to have these pretty clothes to show off.

More than anything I wanted one of those already made up baskets I would see in the stores. You know what I’m talking about – wrapped in colorful cellophane, the baskets had an array of little toys and candies that I was just sure I needed. I didn’t believe her but luckily for me, my mom said she couldn’t afford them.

Even with limited resources and nine kids, my mom always seem to provide some amazing baskets for us at Easter. Of course, we had those dreaded peeps that stuck to the fake grass (sorry, peep fans. just don’t like marshmallows with a side of plastic pink grass), along with some of the eggs we colored the day before and a chocolate rabbit. And because my mom believed Easter should resemble some sort of religious significance, we usually had a holy card or a saint’s medal tucked inside.

I have to appreciate my mom’s dedication to her beliefs. So much so that as I prepared my own kids’ Easter baskets I always included a little religious reminder – usually in the form of a St. Christopher medal.

Now that my boys are grown and starting families of their own, I still like to make up “family” baskets for them. It’s fun to buy girl stuff for my daughters-in-law and I try to add a little bit of religion in those baskets, but after four boys and one adorable grandson, I will soon have a granddaughter to spoil and one thing is for sure – I’m buying that new granddaughter of mine a pretty new Easter bonnet.

Can’t wait….. Happy Easter!

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