Apr 12, 2009

BEDA 12 - An Easter Tradition - Food, Family, Fun

Easter is a time for new beginnings, joy, and the foundation for my faith. But really, for me, Easter is first and foremost about family. Getting together, eating, laughing at the same old jokes, and playing with the kids.

In our family tradition, the kids wake up way too early to find their Easter baskets. Our rule is that the boys have to wait for parents and, their teenage sister (who would sleep all day if possible), before they go downstairs. We still have one that likes to pretend there is an Easter Bunny, but this may be the last year. They find their baskets, look through them carefully and joyfully, and then find plastic eggs I have hid around the house. After most of the eggs are located the kids eat themselves sick with candy. I play the "good mom" role and tell them to eat a banana and drink some milk, but mostly they ignore me. The boys eventually eat some hard boiled eggs that are always dyed and decorated the night before. Our fingers are always very colorful for Easter.

This year, my husband and I went back to bed for a few hours. Our family is getting old enough to do that. I am glad :). When I get back up and around, I prepare food to take to my mom's, and convince the kids that they want to clean up their mess.

Next we go to my mom's house. We kiss and hug, and say "happy Easter" and then we make a bee line for the snack table. Our regular dishes are:

Raw veggies
Ranch Dip made from sour cream and the dry packet - a huge bowl of it
Potato Chips - they have to be Mike Sells Ridges or my older brother considers it an insult.
Doritos - original flavor
Crab Dip - I make
Cheese Ball with Chicken in the Biscuit crackers - I make
Cheese Dip for corn chips and fresh cauliflower - I make
My aunt's bunny face potato salad
Funfetti cup cakes, made by my mom especially for my husband
Black Olives
Cottage Cheese
Deviled Eggs

Occasionally someone will bring something "fancy" and we will eat this too. No matter the holiday, you can count on these dishes at our family gathering.

My dad brings a cooler of beer
His wife brings a taco dip or fruit salad
My sister brings wine
My sister's husband is the one who brings that extra "fancy" stuff. His cheesecake is the best. That man can cook!
My brothers bring their kids and their appetites

My brothers act like fools, but we laugh and encourage them to do so. The kids have another egg hunt, the really good one. Grandma puts candy AND money in the eggs. We yell at the big kids to help the little kids, but the big kid shake the eggs anyway looking for the big stash. Then they go through their eggs, trade, beg, borrow, and steal with all their cousins. The little kids play with the toys grandma put in their baskets.

Then we eat, again. A big whole ham (not spiral, but cut into big thick slices) slow cooked and basted in wine and pineapple juice (the smell alone makes you glad to be Christian), Mac & Cheese, some kind of potato dish, or multiple types of potato dishes, we are of Irish decent. My mom's green beans, rolls (my mom always seems to burn the bottom a bit, but we like them that way) and maybe one or two other things.

Afterward we drink some more (mostly beer, wine or Pepsi, but sometimes my mom gets a wild streak and has a Bahama mama, then we make jokes about "mom being in the bag") and sit around in our state of carbohydrate coma. My dad continues to eat steadily for over an hour. We always tease him about it. My brothers pick up their juvenile banter, and the kids avoid us as much as possible in my mom's small house. We siblings have offered several times to move Easter to one of our houses, but my mom likes to have it at her house, so we snuggle in together for a while. Eventually one of the girls (of course) starts to put away food and do the dishes. My mom looks beat tired by then.

My sister is usually the first to leave. She is the oldest, and the busiest, and she always flutters in and out at amazing speeds. Now that she has the youngest grandchild, he makes it a little harder for her to leave. He really likes to hang out with his big boy cousins. Then the next oldest, my brother, leaves. He is ready to go home and lay on his couch in a food induced trance for the rest of the day. The rest of us file out sometime after to enjoy the rest of the afternoon.

Sometimes, some of us go to mass earlier, but mostly we don't. Every year I think that I will, but....

This year the sun is out, the weather is beautifully dry with a high of 58, and I have eaten very little getting ready for the buffet.

I wish you all the best of family traditions!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Y'all come back now, y'hear!

Archived Posts