I just love Easter! As unorganized as I was this year, everything still came together thanks to the preparation from year's past... I pulled out the children's Easter Baskets and liners, our "Alleluia" mantle letters along with a few other simple yet beautiful decorations, and placed the baskets of candy filled Easter Eggs on the coffee table ready to be hidden by daddy (and whoever else wanted to help hide) after our Easter Dinner. We woke up early and attended the 8am Mass on Easter Morning. Mass was packed and we ended up sitting in the old choir loft, which was interesting... Still, Mass was beautiful and after we returned home the children were all so excited to discover (finally, after one quick picture!) what was inside their Easter Baskets!
This year they were blessed with baskets full of books, thanks to the incredible generosity of so many! I feel so very blessed! Since we
Since some of you have been asking, in our family the children do know that the baskets are filled by their Dad and I... We've never incorporated the "Easter Bunny" into our celebrations. We do have a great out of print book that ties the Easter Bunny into the real reason for Easter though!
Anyways, even though I already shared my plans for the baskets with lots of links I will list them here as well noting the various changes and additions. The five oldest, and my husband as well, all received beautiful handpainted bookmarks of their Patron Saints from The Fig and Thimble. All of the children, except for Bud, received a Rosary Case (purchased with credit from Apron sales at Catholic Cuisine!), and a new beautifully embroidered Scapular.
Captain's basket included the following six books/DVD: Ablaze, A Soldier Surrenders, Giant of the Western Trail, Crusader King, Outcast, and The War of the Vendee (DVD). He also received a Cardinal mini puppet, the Lego Architecture Space Needle, a few lego minifigures, a bag of jelly bellys, some chewing gum, and a chocolate egg.
Rascal's six books included: Letters to an Altar Boy, Painted Saints, A Book of Angles, Father Damien and the Bells, The New Kid (Tales of the RAF), and Shadow in the Dark (since Bank Robbery! was on backorder). He also received a Robin mini puppet, an Eagle Creator Set (doesn't it remind you of the eagles in LOTR?), a few lego minifigures, a bag of jelly bellys, some chewing gum, and a chocolate egg.
Twinkle Toes was very excited to discover Caroline's accessories! I had ordered them last year along with the Caroline doll, but saved them for her Easter basket. just giving her the actual doll for Christmas. She also found a new hairbrush, some white gloves to match her Easter dress, a set of colored gel pens for writing to her pen-pals, jelly bellys, chewing gum, a little chocolate egg, and a darling Fawn mini puppet. Her books included Saint Helena and the True Cross, Saint Clothilde (already finished! she loved it!), The Mitchells: Five for Victory, Prairie Thief (also already finished and loved it too!), Traitor in the Shipyard (currently reading and enjoying), Easter Crack-ups (silly little book, but the kids have all had fun with it!), and Easter Eggstravaganza Mad Libs (which, after I explained how Mad Libs worked and did one of them with the children, has provided hours of fun and laughter!).
The girls also each received a gorgeous new chapel veil! These, too, were purchased with store credit from Apron sales at Catholic Cuisine!! The girls are so very excited to have "grown up" veils now, rather than the ones they have been wearing for years that tie under their chins. I do need to make them some sort of pouch, or something, to store their veils in between Masses - rather than just tossing them into the Mass bag with everything else. Any suggestions? Perhaps a Satin Favor Bag?
I did end up keeping Lily's Easter Party. Even though I wish the wording was different when referencing the Last Supper and the initiation of the Eucharist, it was easily corrected with a little white-out. We also have the same problem with our Benjamin's Box book.
In addition to Lily's Easter Party (read already), Chiquita also received Kitchen Madonna, The Three Trees: A Traditional Folktale (read already), Clare's Costly Cookies (She hasn't read this yet, but Twinkle Toes has and was very excited about it!), Secret in the Hills (currently reading), and I can't tell you how many times they have asked to re-watch St. Bernadette of Lourdes. The children ALL loved this movies by Navis Pictures and can't wait to watch Captain's tonight!
Like Twinkle Toes, she also discovered a few accessories for her doll along with a new hairbrush, some white gloves to match her Easter dress, a set of colored gel pens for writing to her pen-pals, jelly bellys, chewing gum, a little chocolate egg, and a darling Lop Ear Bunny mini puppet. Oh and she also found some seeds for our Garden from St. Clare's Seeds! We need to start making garden plans soon...
Snuggles loves Brother Hubert - though he has named his doll "Brother Francis Xavier." He also loved the little red dragon mini puppet to go along with his new Knight's City Pop-Up and The Adventures of Sir Lancelot the Great, which Rascal is currently reading to him! I went slightly overboard choosing books for Snuggles' basket and he also discovered The Christian Alphabet Book, Whales Snails and Heavenly Tales, Tin Cups and Tinder, God is Wonderful Catholic Coloring Book, Fox and Crow are Not Friends, Inch and Roly Make a Wish, and Inch and Roly and the Very Small Hiding Place tucked inside! He also found a few lego minifigures and city motorcycle, a bag of gummy bunnies from Trader Joes, and a chocolate egg.
Rose loved her new veils! The older girls chapel veils have seen better days and it was time to replace them. Rose was very excited to find a new white veil and one that was PINK-UH too!
She also loves, loves, loves, her new scapular and rosary case!
Rose's books included A Time to Keep: The Tasha Tudor Book of Holidays , The Sparrows Easter Song, K is for Kite: God’s Springtime Alphabet, The Lamb and the Butterfly, and (my personal favorite of the bunch along with the Tasha Tudor Book) The Miraculous Tale of the Two Maries.
I did not end up including Tell Me about the Catholic Faith: From the Bible to the Sacraments. I pretty much never purchase a book without reading at least one review on it and made an exception for this book, with it being marked down 45%... I expected better from Ignatius Press. This is a perfect case of "you can't judge a book by it's cover" and we sent it back.
Bud had fun digging though his Easter basket this year, even though he wasn't feeling well, and of course he went right to the board books, particularly the touch and feel books!
His basket included The First Easter Day (A Touch-and-Feel Book), Mossy, Sunny Bunny, I am a Bunny, The Tale of Peter Rabbit: A Pop-Up Adventure, An Easter Prayer. He also found Jack Rabbit and Turtle mini puppets, and Father Martin! I also found a couple more board books at Costco which I squeezed in as well: Easter Surprise and Show Me Your Ears which seems to be his new favorite!
This year's Family Easter Symbols Basket was also a hit! It's always so much fun to have the children figure out which gift item matches each symbol. This year we had a A Cross Shaped Puzzle for "Cross." In Like a Lion, Out Like a Lamb - since Easter fell on the last day of March this year - for "Lamb." The "Lily" was represented by a copy of The Lily Cupboard to be used for history. the Spring Angel Egg completed our collection of these beautiful eggs for the "Egg" symbol. We also had a box of Godiva Butterfly Truffles (from Target) and a Butterfly Cookie Cutter (Walmart Clearance) for "Butterfly."Super cute peacock stacking blocks for "Peacock." And a 3-D St. Peter's Basilica Puzzle, which was the most difficult to guess since I incorporated "the Bells fly to Rome until Easter" for this symbol!
I think this post wraps up all the pictures I had hoped to share from our Easter celebration. Click here to see pictures from this year's Family Picture, Easter Egg Hunt, Decorating our Easter Cakes, and Seven Quick Easter Takes!
Wishing you all a blessed Divine Mercy Sunday!