“The best men in all ages keep classic traditions alive.”

Today is yesterday and the day before: cloudy and cold. When I went to get the papers, I said good morning to the woman taking a brisk walk by my house. She was wearing a winter coat, knitted hat and gloves.  “Layered?” I asked. “Definitely!” was her answer. It is that cold this morning.

In my memory drawers the Easters of my childhood were always warm and sunny and filled with color. The traditional picture was on the front steps facing the sun and we all squinted. My straw Easter basket had alternating slats in yellow, green and red. The grass on the bottom was plastic and bright green. It struck to anything half-eaten: the candy tasted then put in the basket and saved for later. Jelly beans were big and all sorts of colors. I used to say the red was my favorite, but I think all the colors really tasted the same. The rabbit was eaten in stages. I was an ears first kid.

Easter dresses had pouffy petticoats underneath and most were in light pastels. The shoes were shiny patent leather each with a single strap across the front. My socks had a frilly, lacy top which folded over. When I was little, I couldn’t wait to get dressed in my new clothes. I’d put on my dress and turn in circles, and my dress would swish and twirl with me. I felt like a princess.

When I got older, Easter lost some of its luster for me. I still ate the rabbit’s ears first but pouff and patent leather were gone. One year I had my mother buy me a blazer, blouse and skirt combo. At my grandparent’s house Easter afternoon, I heard my aunt ask my mother about my outfit. She thought it was plain and hardly Easter. My mother told her it was what I wanted. That was enough.

I remember one Easter when I was in Ghana. It was a special day the way Easter should be. I was in Accra as I had traveled down on Good Friday, the start of school vacation week. A bunch of us went to a beach resort for the afternoon. I remember walking along the shore and then stopping to play coconut. We used a palm tree branch as the bat and a coconut as the ball. The game was fun. The whole day was fun. That night we all went to out to eat at a nice restaurant, not our usual hole-in-the-wall. The restaurant even had potatoes.

Easter still has traditions some dating back to my childhood. I sneak down early in the morning and decorate a tree by my friends’ deck. They give me a basket, and I do baskets for them. I always eat the rabbit’s ears first. We get dressed up and go to a fancy restaurant for dinner. We sit and enjoy the view of the ocean. We have the best time together.

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8 Comments on ““The best men in all ages keep classic traditions alive.””

  1. olof1 Says:

    The day started chilly and foggy with some sunshine, then it turned cloudy and was still rather cold but now when evening has arrived the sun shines and it’s rather warmn and nice outside.

    Nothing much has happened here and the Easter tyraditions sort of died out with my grandmother. Now we rather stay far apart from each other 🙂 But I did decorate my påskris. I should have used birch branches because they are moire straight and the påskris looks better. I also placed some apple branches in it and I think the flowers will open up within a week or so.

    I can’t remember ever getting new clothes for Easter, I can’t remember when we bought new clothes at all to be honest even though I know we always did 🙂

    Have a great day!

    • katry Says:

      I just got back from my errands, and it is still quite cold out. No sun at all today.

      I love the idea of decorating branches with eggs and such. I did that a couple of years but didn’t realize it had a name. Now I know what to call my tree.

      New clothes for Easter is part of the tradition. I have no idea how it started but everyone gets Easter clothes.

      We sometimes had an Easter egg hunt. They were quite fun and there were prizes and eggs with special candy. I thought of having one for adults when I saw eggs filled with small bottles of alcohol.

      Have a great evening!

  2. Birgit Says:

    Good Friday, one of the most quiet days of the year. It’s a public holiday, no official fun events are allowed, most church bells are quiet, no neighbors are mowing the lawn or doing noisy work in the house, shops are closed, nearly no driving cars around. Just the birds are singing. It’s a pleasure.
    A traditional church song on Good Friday is “O Sacred Head, Now Wounded”. Even your favorite trio used the same old melody in one of their songs:

    • katry Says:

      All the schools are closed but businesses are open as it is not a holiday.

      The day sounds perfect. I always wished they never changed the law here, called the Blue Law, so that Sunday could remain quiet with no stores or businesses opened. Now it is like every other day. I believe we all need a day to rest and a day to reflect.

      This song is lovely. Thank you, Birgit.

  3. Caryn Says:

    Hi Kat,
    Today was cold. There was frost all over everything this morning. The heat has been on in the house and that’s where I want to stay.

    I was momentarily outside with Rocky at noon. The neighborhood church was playing its e-bells. A single ding repeated at regular intervals for a while.
    I remembered it was Good Friday and tried to remember if the Catholic church did any particular thing at noon on Good Friday but I couldn’t.
    Then the chiming changed to a two-tone one with the two tones slightly out of time with each other. It was okay but kind of broke the spell.

    Hats, pocket books and patent leather shoes were my favorite things to shop for at Easter. I hated the dresses my mother bought for me. They were pouffy with lots of nylon under slips that made me itch. The gathered pouffy sleeves were particularly annoying. I couldn’t wait to get out of those things after church.

    I always asked for the black jelly beans precisely because they didn’t taste like all the other colors.

    Enjoy the day.

    • katry Says:

      Hi Caryn,
      I did a couple of errands, the big one being dog and cat food. It was mighty cold here too but no frost.

      We used to have vigil from noon to three. It was always downstairs in the church. The statues were all covered in purple and the church was quiet. Some people did the stations of the cross. We signed up for half hour stints.

      I forgot the gloves and pocketbooks. I got out of the pouffy stage early in life, by the time I was six or seven.

      I hate licorice but I love black jelly beans!

      Have a great evening!

  4. flyboybob Says:

    I had to work today and the weather was gorgeous. Clear skies and 77 degrees when I got into my car to drive home. Too bad my company doesn’t give us a day off for Good Friday, they are just cheap.

    Although we celebrated Passover we always got one of those large solid chocolate bunnies on Easter Sunday. We ate the matzo at the sedar table, remember the last supper, but ate the wonderful candy on Easter weekend because we were reformed Jews and my parents didn’t want us to feel left out. Christian holidays are always more fun.

    When I was a little kid we would get dressed up to go to my father’s parents apartment for the sedar meal. My grandfather was very observant and we had to sit through a couple of hours of the story of the redemption from Egypt in Hebrew. Thank goodness drinking four glasses of wine is required which helped getting through the evening. Now we dress casually like our Israeli cousins and read the 30 minute sedar in English so we can eat the Passover dinner and then watch TV.

    • katry Says:

      Only school around here are closed on Good Friday. All the businesses are open, but it was a chilly, cloudy day which tempted no one to want the day off from work.

      Nothing is better than those solid, chocolate bunnies. I always ate my a little over time so it would last longer.

      It seems we all celebrate the holy days the same way now. I do get dressed up for dinner out at a restaurant but can’t wait to get home and comfortable. If baseball is on, we watch the game.

      I just put two Easter baskets together. It was fun!

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