I Will Always Remember ‘The {Perfect?} Easter Morning’……

I will always remember Easter morning from last year.

I had a great plan….

I got up early on Easter morning

to cook my family some fun, homemade

blueberry pancakes in the shapes of Easter eggs, chicks, and bunnies.

The table was set….and ready for fun.

Everyone’s lovely new clothes were waiting to be donned.

It was going to be a great day.

I started cooking the pancakes….

and it just wasn’t working.

I had beheaded bunnies, chicks with no body, and

completely destroyed Easter eggs.

The eggs burned while I was trying to get the pancakes

working….I wondered if I could convince my family

that it was a new, cutting-edge dish….charcoal eggs???.

I was determined to have fun-shaped pancakes….

but we ended up with plain, round ones.

How I got blueberry batter

in my eyelashes, I’m not sure.

I forgot to cook the bacon.

{But the table still looked really pretty.}

We always get new outfits for Easter…..

we’ve done this since our children were small.

Not to impress anyone; but to be an outward expression

of what Easter stands for: Brand New Life.

Those lovely new duds were all hanging and ready.

My youngest daughter just started wearing mascara….

it’s a learned skill to handle, ya know.

And the make-up remover?

Well, it ended up all over her brand new dress.

And her nails that were chipped and looking

like a mechanic from fun in the yard?

Due to the pancakes…we didn’t get to re-paint them.

My other daughter’s new dress just wasn’t working

with the camisole that wouldn’t stay up….

I hoisted it up with twine and hair barrettes in the back.

She was freezing and put on leggings with her new

dress that had ketchup stains on the knee. ?????

{How does ketchup get on your knees?}

And then donned her winter wool coat.

I love the new nail polish I found this past week

and had painted my toes and fingernails with it.

It will look gorgeous with a tan…..

but with winter white skin?

Yeah, well, I looked like the crypt-keeper.

We’ve been rearranging closets and cleaning some areas

out around here…so somehow all the sheets and blankets

have ended up in my closet….on top of my shoes.  ???

I couldn’t find my shoes for church…you know, the ones that

were perfect with my new outfit.

It was at this point that my prayers turned to:

“Really, God? Really???!!”

We finally made it to the car and headed to church.

And I looked down at my ring.

My beautiful ring that Handsome had made for me by a local jeweler…

my engagement ring…

flanked by two wedding bands that he also designed and had made.

I had meant to clean it this past weekend.

No doubt it had blueberry batter in it!

It’s a very large amethyst….and so it gets all kinds

of dirt, etc. in it that makes it cloudy.

Still beautiful….but nothing like when it’s cleaned.

Sparkly, deep purple, can-see-the-facets clean.

Dang!

So, here we were……

the girls and I looking like the crypt-keeper and her daughters

that had fallen off the apple cart.

{Somehow the guys managed to escape any fashion fiascos.}

Beheaded bunnies flung all over the kitchen…

looking like a crime scene.

A shoe explosion in the bedroom.

My lovely plans to bless my family

blown to bits!

But it was when I looked down in the car at my ring

that I heard a still small voice.

You know….during the time that I was  trying

to get my attitude straight before getting to church.

{So I could smile and say ‘Fine’. Because I was afraid

that someone was going to ask me how I was doing

and I was going to break down and yell something like

“THE BUNNIES DIDN’T WORK!!!!”

And then they would need to call the behavioral

health professionals for back-up.}

It was when I gazed at my ring that the still small

voice said…..

“Daune, you’ve had the perfect Easter morning.

This is why I died. You don’t need to be cleaned

up and sparkly to come to me…..you come just as

you are…wherever you are. No need to clean up first.”

We can bring our mismatched, rag-tag, chipped, cloudy, dirty,

barette-hoisted, bad attitude selves to the cross.

With all our failures and disappointments.

That’s what Easter morning is all about.

He will clean me up to where I sparkle and shine…

with the facets that he has placed within me

reflecting His love to my family and others.

So, that’s when I realized that I had had the

Perfect Easter Morning.

True story.

Blessings to you~

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Fun Easter Projects and Traditions…..

Easter is soooo early this year!

I’m not quite ready to think about it….but I better get with it.

Here are some of the fun projects we enjoy doing at Easter….you can click on the title of each to be taken to the post with the how-to’s, etc.

Just this weekend I gave these to a lovely group of teen girls that spent the weekend with us…..here’s the how-to….

Vintage German Easter Egg Treats

basket of vintage easter eggs 2

This is our favorite way to dye eggs…..I just love the colors:

Naturally Dyed Easter Eggs

naturally dyed eggs on silver tray

Ever know the stories behind Easter Traditions?

I shared some in this post:

Easter Traditions

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We had fun making these last year, too….

Vintage Sheet Music Eggs

Vintage Sheet Music Eggs main

Here’s the recipe for

Easter Story Cookies

109916047125590909_ARklOYxW_f

Have you started looking for the

Pine Tree Crosses

pine_crosses.jpg

I shared about our

Easter Egg Tree …… and how you can make your own….

easter egg tree

And we love the yearly tradition of doing a

Passion Tree

passion tree 2011

Well…those are some of our fun yearly traditions that we enjoy…..do you have any special Easter traditions? I’d love to hear about them!

Blessings~

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Sharing with:  Tip JunkieBetween Naps on the PorchThrifty Decor ChickFunky Junk InteriorsDIY ShowoffHome Stories A to Z,  Serenity NowSavvy Southern StyleMy Romantic HomeJennifer Rizzo

The {Perfect?} Easter Morning…..

I had a great plan….

I got up early on Easter morning

to cook my family some fun, homemade

blueberry pancakes in the shapes of Easter eggs, chicks, and bunnies.

The table was set….and ready for fun.

Everyone’s lovely new clothes were waiting to be donned.

It was going to be a great day.

I started cooking the pancakes….

and it just wasn’t working.

I had beheaded bunnies, chicks with no body, and

completely destroyed Easter eggs.

The eggs burned while I was trying to get the pancakes

working….I wondered if I could convince my family

that it was a new, cutting-edge dish….charcoal eggs???.

I was determined to have fun-shaped pancakes….

but we ended up with plain, round ones.

How I got blueberry batter

in my eyelashes, I’m not sure.

I forgot to cook the bacon.

{But the table still looked really pretty.}

We always get new outfits for Easter…..

we’ve done this since our children were small.

Not to impress anyone; but to be an outward expression

of what Easter stands for: Brand New Life.

Those lovely new duds were all hanging and ready.

My youngest daughter just started wearing mascara….

it’s a learned skill to handle, ya know.

And the make-up remover?

Well, it ended up all over her brand new dress.

And her nails that were chipped and looking

like a mechanic from fun in the yard?

Due to the pancakes…we didn’t get to re-paint them.

My other daughter’s new dress just wasn’t working

with the camisole that wouldn’t stay up….

I hoisted it up with twine and hair barrettes in the back.

She was freezing and put on leggings with her new

dress that had ketchup stains on the knee. ?????

{How does ketchup get on your knees?}

And then donned her winter wool coat.

I love the new nail polish I found this past week

and had painted my toes and fingernails with it.

It will look gorgeous with a tan…..

but with winter white skin?

Yeah, well, I looked like the crypt-keeper.

We’ve been rearranging closets and cleaning some areas

out around here…so somehow all the sheets and blankets

have ended up in my closet….on top of my shoes.  ???

I couldn’t find my shoes for church…you know, the ones that

were perfect with my new outfit.

It was at this point that my prayers turned to:

“Really, God? Really???!!”

We finally made it to the car and headed to church.

And I looked down at my ring.

My beautiful ring that Handsome had made for me by a local jeweler…

my engagement ring…

flanked by two wedding bands that he also designed and had made.

I had meant to clean it this past weekend.

No doubt it had blueberry batter in it!

It’s a very large amethyst….and so it gets all kinds

of dirt, etc. in it that makes it cloudy.

Still beautiful….but nothing like when it’s cleaned.

Sparkly, deep purple, can-see-the-facets clean.

Dang!

So, here we were……

the girls and I looking like the crypt-keeper and her daughters

that had fallen off the apple cart.

{Somehow the guys managed to escape any fashion fiascos.}

Beheaded bunnies flung all over the kitchen…

looking like a crime scene.

A shoe explosion in the bedroom.

My lovely plans to bless my family

blown to bits!

But it was when I looked down in the car at my ring

that I heard a still small voice.

You know….during the time that I was  trying

to get my attitude straight before getting to church.

{So I could smile and say ‘Fine’. Because I was afraid

that someone was going to ask me how I was doing

and I was going to break down and yell something like

“THE BUNNIES DIDN’T WORK!!!!”

And then they would need to call the behavioral

health professionals for back-up.}

It was when I gazed at my ring that the still small

voice said…..

“Daune, you’ve had the perfect Easter morning.

This is why I died. You don’t need to be cleaned

up and sparkly to come to me…..you come just as

you are…wherever you are. No need to clean up first.”

We can bring our mismatched, rag-tag, chipped, cloudy, dirty,

barette-hoisted, bad attitude selves to the cross.

With all our failures and disappointments.

That’s what Easter morning is all about.

He will clean me up to where I sparkle and shine…

with the facets that he has placed within me

reflecting His love to my family and others.

So, that’s when I realized that I had had the

Perfect Easter Morning.

True story.

Blessings to you~

Naturally Dyed Easter Eggs….

You guys are a treasure!

Thank you for the sweet comments and e-mails about

my daughter’s birthday post yesterday.

They blessed her, as well.

{If you’d like to read the posts about my son and

my middle daughter click on over. :)}

******

This week we had so much fun dying Easter Eggs.

We like to use natural dyes that are made from

fruits, vegetables, and spices from the kitchen.

Here are great recipes to use to do that if

you’d like to give it a try.

I love the colors that natural dyes produce.

 I hope that you and your family

have a wonderful Easter!

{source}

 Blessings~

Sharing with:  Jennifer Rizzo

Vintage German Easter Egg Treats

I shared in a post last week that I love collecting

these vintage, paper mache, German Easter eggs.

I just think they are so fun!

They usually come in three sizes….

for this project I used the largest size.

I was able to find a ton of them at a store

this year, so I thought it would be fun to fill them

with some fun treats for my beautiful group

of middle school girls that I get to spend time

 with each Wednesday night here at our cottage.

They are girls. There is chocolate inside.

There is the cute factor.

It’s a score…dontcha think?

In case you aren’t familiar with these fun eggs….

here’s some pics…..

I love the inside…..usually printed in a fun pattern.

I filled them with paper grass and chocolate goodness……

 Voila! A basket of Easter happiness.

 It was hard….but while putting these together I didn’t eat

not even one piece of candy! Not even the new Reese’s

Peanut Butter eggs. Whew! Because once to have one…..

all of a sudden it’s been twenty!

Have you made any Easter treats this year?

Easter Blessings~

PS I’m sorry that I didn’t sing write ‘wring’? you a song today from Fiddler on the Roof.  I know that has probably gotten you through each day this week so far. I hope you are not disappointed. 😉 Oh! Oh! I have one!….Sabbath Prayer from Fiddler on the Roof….perfect for my Wednesday night girls….a blessing for their eggs. {Oh, that sounded funny…..their vintage German EASTER EGGS!}

“May the Lord protect and defend you.

May He always shield you from shame.

May you come to be

In Israel a shining name.

May you be like Ruth and like Esther.

May you be deserving of praise.

Strengthen them, Oh Lord,

And keep them from the strangers’ ways.

May God bless you and grant you long lives.

(May the Lord fulfill our Sabbath prayer for you.)

May God make you good mothers and wives.

(May He send you husbands who will care for you.)

May the Lord protect and defend you.

May the Lord preserve you from pain.

Favor them, Oh Lord, with happiness and peace.

Oh, hear our Sabbath prayer. Amen.”

{Although “Matchmaker” reminds me of some of my precious Bible study girls. ;)}

Bye!

Sharing with:  Jennifer Rizzo

Easter Traditions…..

“Traaaaadiiiitiiioioioioioioioinnnnnnnn!  Tradition!”

{I can’t even write that word without singing the

song from Fiddler on the Roof!}

If you have not seen that particular broadway musical….

by all means, go out and rent it.

I’m not very traditional;

but I like traditions….creating them, learning their

history, and having them for my family.

Did you know the history of these Easter traditions?

“Traaaaadiiiitiiioioioioioioioinnnnnnnn!  Tradition!”

{Oh, excuse me, it’s just habit.}

{source} 

[The following definitions/explanations came from the Homeward site….great site for families, by the way!]

Easter Symbols. Around the second century, Christian missionaries seeking to convert the tribes of Northern Europe realized that the time of the crucifixion of Jesus roughly coincided with local springtime celebrations, which emphasized the triumph of life over death. The evangelists seized the opportunity to connect with their traditions to teach the true power of the resurrection.

Easter Eggs. Easter eggs first appeared when Greek Christians painted eggs bright red to resemble the blood of Christ. Hollow eggs were later decorated with pictures of Jesus and the apostles.
Easter Egg Hunts. Easter egg hunts began in Europe when eggs of different colors were taken from the nests of various birds. The search through the woods for eggs gradually evolved into today’s popular activity.
Easter Baskets. Easter baskets were originally intended to resemble birds’ nests that held the eggs.
Easter Cards. Easter cards arrived in Victorian England, when a stationer added a greeting to a drawing of a rabbit. The cards were quickly in demand and continued to grow in popularity through the years.
Chocolate Bunnies. Chocolate Bunnies first appeared in Germany. Later, immigrants took the custom to Pennsylvania. As Easter celebrations became more common after the Civil War, the custom of Chocolate Eggs took hold.
New Clothes at Easter. After their baptisms, early Christians wore white robes all through Easter week to indicate their new lives. Those who had already been baptized wore new clothes to symbolize their sharing a new life with Christ.
Easter Parades. In medieval Europe, churchgoers would take a walk after Easter Mass. Today, these walks endure as Easter Parades.
[The following explanations came from FactMonster.]

Ancient Spring Goddess

According to the Venerable Bede, Easter derives its name from Eostre, an Anglo-Saxon goddess of spring. A month corresponding to April had been named “Eostremonat,” or Eostre’s month, leading to “Easter” becoming applied to the Christian holiday that usually took place within it. Prior to that, the holiday had been called Pasch (Passover), which remains its name in most non-English languages.

(Based on the similarity of their names, some connect Eostre with Ishtar, the Babylonian and Assyrian goddess of love and fertility, but there is no solid evidence for this.)

It seems probable that around the second century A.D., Christian missionaries seeking to convert the tribes of northern Europe noticed that the Christian holiday commemorating the resurrection of Jesus roughly coincided with the Teutonic springtime celebrations, which emphasized the triumph of life over death. Christian Easter gradually absorbed the traditional symbols.

Easter Eggs

In Medieval Europe, eggs were forbidden during Lent. Eggs laid during that time were often boiled or otherwise preserved. Eggs were thus a mainstay of Easter meals, and a prized Easter gift for children and servants.

In addition, eggs have been viewed as symbols of new life and fertility through the ages. It is believed that for this reason many ancient cultures, including the Ancient EgyptiansPersians, and Romans, used eggs during their spring festivals.

Many traditions and practices have formed around Easter eggs. The coloring of eggs is a established art, and eggs are often dyed, painted, and otherwise decorated. Eggs were also used in various holiday games: parents would hide eggs for children to find, and children would roll eggs down hills. These practices live on in Easter egg hunts and egg rolls. The most famous egg roll takes place on the White House lawn every year.

Different Traditions

Orthodox Christians in the Middle East and in Greece painted eggs bright red to symbolize the blood of Christ. Hollow eggs (created by piercing the shell with a needle and blowing out the contents) were decorated with pictures of Christ, the Virgin Mary, and other religious figures in Armenia.

Germans gave green eggs as gifts on Holy Thursday, and hung hollow eggs on trees. Austrians placed tiny plants around the egg and then boiled them. When the plants were removed, white patterns were created.

Artistic Creations

The most elaborate Easter egg traditions appear to have emerged in Eastern Europe. In Poland and Ukraine, eggs were often painted silver and gold. Pysanky (to design or write) eggs were created by carefully applying wax in patterns to an egg. The egg was then dyed, wax would be reapplied in spots to preserve that color, and the egg was boiled again in other shades. The result was a multi-color striped or patterned egg.

The Easter Bunny

Hares and rabbits have long been symbols of fertility. The inclusion of the hare into Easter customs appears to have originated in Germany, where tales were told of an “Easter hare” who laid eggs for children to find. German immigrants to America — particularly Pennsylvania — brought the tradition with them and spread it to a wider public. They also baked cakes for Easter in the shape of hares, and may have pioneered the practice of making chocolate bunnies and eggs.

Now…run out and get Fiddler on the Roof.  It has nothing to do with Easter…but will be fun anyway.
“If I were a rich man woman…biddddeeeee, bidddeeee, bidddeee, biddddeeeee, biddddeeeee, bum!”

Friday Favorites……

For the weekend….

some of my favorites that I’ve come across lately.

I’m loving the wonderful spring weather we are having…

and I have a thing for nests!

Hot Cross Buns!

Fun printables for Easter gifts….

The wonderful spring wind….

Dying and decorating eggs….

I hope you weekend is full of springtime!

Easter Story Cookie Recipe

I shared this Easter Story Cookie Recipe on the blog my first week of blogging…..it’s a fun activity to do this time of the year and thought I would share it again. When you open the cookies in the morning….they are empty!

It’s a great recipe to do with your children the night before Easter Sunday—–our family has used this recipe for years – from preschool parties, fun at home, etc.  It’s a wonderful way to tell the story of Easter to young ones.  Hope you enjoy!

{I used a picture from Tip Junkie because it showed the empty inside better than the picture I have of our cookies}

Ingredients

  • 1 cup pecan halves
  • 1 teaspoon distilled white vinegar
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 cup white sugar

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C).
  2. Place pecans in a resealable plastic baggie. Crush the pecans into small bits. Read John 19:1-3
  3. Put 1 teaspoon vinegar into a medium bowl. Read John 19:28-30
  4. Add egg whites to the vinegar. Read John 10:10-11
  5. Sprinkle salt into the egg whites. Read Luke 23:27
  6. So far, the mixture isn’t very appetizing. Add 1cup sugar. Read Psalm 34:8 and John 3:16. Beat with mixer on high speed for 12 to 15 minutes until stiff peaks are formed. Read Isaiah 1:18 and John 3:1-3.
  7. Fold in broken nuts. Drop by teaspoons onto parchment paper lined baking sheet. Read Matthew 27:57-60.
  8. Place cookies in the oven close the door and turn the oven off. Read Matthew 27:65-66.
  9. Go to bed. Read John 16:20 and 22.
  10. In the morning open the oven and take out the cookies. Read Matthew 28:1-9.  {When you open them they will be empty!}
Happy Easter!
Sharing with: Skip to My LouTip JunkieToday’s Creative BlogNot JUST a Housewife,  Blue Cricket DesignThe Shabby Creek CottageWhipperberryThe Idea Room,  Between Naps on the PorchFrench Country CottageThe Lettered CottageThrifty Decor ChickFunky Junk InteriorsAt the Picket FenceMy Uncommon Slice of SuburbiaCommon Ground,  DIY ShowoffHome Stories A to Z a.k.a. DesignSomeday CraftsOrganize and Decorate Everything,  2805Making the World CuterThe Girl CreativeCraftomaniacCarolyns HomeworkFingerprints on the FridgeTatertots & JelloSerenity NowNo Minimalist HereSavvy Southern Style, Coastal CharmMy Romantic HomeRedoux504 Main733 BlogWe Are That FamilyCreating Really Awesome Free Things,  The Charm of HomeDelightsome LifeAnything GoesRooted in ThymePositively SplendidJennifer Rizzo

Spring Front Porch

Everything here is covered in pollen…

how is it where you are?

We had a fun few days in the garden

last week….Handsome took a couple of days off

and we got a lot accomplished.

Pressure washing, weeding, planting….etc.

We also springified the front porch.

You can’t help but love pansies….they look like little happy faces.

AND, they are GREAT on salads.

We add them to our salads for a little

peppery kick. {They also look lovely, too!}

The two-dove sculpture was left on my porch

as a present from a friend a few weeks ago.

Don’t you just love fun surprises….

especially when someone knows you so well????

We have a lot of fun with our French Cafe Sidewalk

Chalkboard that Handsome made.

We’ve found so many fun uses for it…..

We just reused our branches from Christmas and winter

and hung some paper mache Easter eggs on them.

Our front porch is our therapy spot.

We eat meals on the dining table we have out there,

hang out in the porch swing and read, talk, drink

lemonade or our beloved sweet tea.

We made a list of what we would have to have in a house if we ever moved…..

Number one is always a big front porch

and Number two is always a wood-burning fireplace.

The front porch was what first drew us to Oak Cottage.

Before we even had a realtor show it to us we would come

and sit on the front porch swing trying to decide

if this was definitely the cottage for us.

{No one lived here…it was basically abandoned.}

For almost 17 years now we have sat in that same

porch swing knowing that it was.

Do you have a porch that you enjoy?

Sharing with:  Skip to My LouTip JunkieToday’s Creative BlogNot JUST a Housewife,  Blue Cricket DesignThe Shabby Creek CottageWhipperberryThe Idea Room,  Between Naps on the PorchFrench Country CottageThe Lettered CottageThrifty Decor ChickFunky Junk InteriorsAt the Picket FenceMy Uncommon Slice of SuburbiaCommon Ground,  DIY ShowoffHome Stories A to Z a.k.a. DesignSomeday CraftsOrganize and Decorate Everything,  2805Making the World CuterThe Girl CreativeCraftomaniacCarolyns HomeworkFingerprints on the FridgeTatertots & JelloSerenity NowNo Minimalist HereSavvy Southern Style, Coastal CharmMy Romantic HomeRedoux504 Main733 BlogWe Are That FamilyCreating Really Awesome Free Things,  The Charm of HomeDelightsome LifeAnything Goes, Rooted in ThymePositively SplendidSouthern HospitalityJennifer Rizzo

Easter Egg Trees…..

Do you have any Easter decorations that are traditions?

I grew up collecting special ornaments to add

to our Easter Egg tree each year.

Those ornaments have now been passed on to me

and we still have fun adding to them each year.

Many years ago we gathered branches from

the woods, put them in a terra cotta pot

with cement poured into it.

Then, we spray painted the whole shebang white.

The weight of the cement anchors the tree

and keeps it from falling over once you put all

the decorations on it.

Some of my favorite decorations were brought to

me from Holland each year…from a close friend.

They are my favorites.

Hand-painted wooden eggs, bunnies, etc.

Some other fun Easter decorations that I love

are these vintage paper mache eggs.

I came across several of them this  year

and I think I am going to fill them with

fun treats and give them to my lovely middle

school girls’ Bible study next week.

I think will like them!

A new addition to our decorations this year

is this little guy….I saw him in Pottery Barn a few

weeks ago…and giggled so much I just knew I had

to have him! A knit bunny wine bottle topper!

We don’t drink wine…but we do have lots

of sparkling cider, so

there he sits.  I giggle every time I pass by.

Isn’t it a hoot?

Do you decorate for Easter or have any special

Easter traditions that you would like to pass along?

Hope your week is off to a great start~

Today I am thankful for:

~ bunny toppers that make me giggle

~ a fun few days working in the yard with Handsome

~ birdsong in the morning

~ thunderstorms at night

~ grace

Sharing with:  Jennifer Rizzo