Thursday, April 11, 2013

My nightcap re-cap of our first Golden Easter

I meant to post after Easter day wrapped up, and never did.  You probably saw my pictures on the fb anyway, but I don't know if it could have conveyed the little happy bubble I wandered around in that day.  We had spent the whole week before (at least!) dyeing Easter eggs, making food, and discussing Jesus and The Bad Guys.  Bad Guys really give an ordinary tale of persecution, betrayal, death, and resurrection a miraculous and significant spin.

Very upset about Jesus' plight.
Knox gets very into this story... Obviously, the Bad Guys were his addition.  I tried to get his interpretation of the story on video but he had no interest.  Also I might have been part-scared it would end up in some bare-butt antics.

Tulah drew this cross and Knox was intent on putting Band-Aids on Jesus' hands, but Tulah started erasing too soon.

Celebrations as they tell me the victorious ending of the Easter story! 

Sunday morning.  I woke up, after a late night of preparing for our all-day Easter event, to the sound of my phone buzzing.
My alarm.  At THIS hour??  My alarm.  At. this. hour.
Oh right!  Sunrise service.  The Easter service served up before the sun.  I was going to be there.
I might have fallen back asleep.  Only to wake up again, without a prodding from my phone's alarm.  I had 15 minutes to get dressed and get there.  And to also make sure that the Easter Bunny had nibbled on his honey-confetti carrots that were left for him the night before.  He had indeed.

I rushed out the door to find the little church house that I'd never visited, with only the little visual of the Google map in my head to guide me.  After a few wrong turns in downtown Golden, I turned the corner and found myself slowly passing a little brick church, nestled in the hillside, whose stained-glass windows were aglow in the night of the early morning.  I parked the car.  Whether this was the church I had set out for or not, it was too precious a sight to pass by.

As I walked up to the church the bells tolled.  Actual church bells.  I don't remember the last time I heard church bells!  It was magical.
I walked up the steps that led us up the block's corner and to the church doors, only to realize that this service was not going to be held inside those doors.  We were celebrating outside.  Might have been a good idea to throw on a parka instead of a cardigan and scarf, Miss Boree.  I sat down as two acoustic guitars strummed a song of praise, their strummers leading the crowd in a little Easter nightish-morning song.

I haven't been to church in a long time.  Last summer I had been taking the kids to my old pastor's church every Sunday, up until the time we moved.  It was a good church, a very inclusive and community-based church that is still in its growing stages.  In fact, it was moving to a new location at the same time we were moving to ours.  During and after the major portions of our move, we'd just never returned.  And haven't visited a church since and I'm sad to say it.  Not even during Christmas.  I feel like I have an excuse, a reason, an alibi, a situation, a rationale for every single Sunday morning spent at home or out to breakfast.  The fact is that finding a church is hard and it's been easy to let the work of it go, especially when every single weekend is filled up with Very Important and Urgent Business around the house.  I thought that Easter would be a good time to make it a priority.

I sat through the service at that Episcopalian church, in the 30* temperatures, in my cardigan, next to a warm and very tempting occupied sleeve of a parka, just enjoying being.  I was up well before the sun or my kiddos.  I had fulfilled my goal of starting the day off at church.  I was watching the sun rise with very perfect strangers.  We would probably all rush off to make breakfast or hide the eggs, but for now we were there on no agenda.  It was heaven.  When the service ended, I did need to rush off to get the food going for our day, but I hopped down those church steps as the sun was coming up and I felt happy.  I was warm, even.  I was supposed to be there.  And luckily Starbucks was just down the street, calling me to enjoy a large decaf with two honeys and extra cream for my drive home.  When I got home I said to Mister, "I didn't know it was going to be outside!  It was cold!"  He replied, "That's what Sunrise Service IS."

After my cold yet cozy, slow, solo wake-up that Sunday, I set out to prepare a darn good-ish brunch for when Nick's family came over.  I had made most of the food the days before, except for heating the ham- duh.  I only had to make the eggs, slice the croissants, roast the brussels sprouts, and top the cheesecake.  With a little help when people started arriving I'd be good to go.  Obviously I'd need to fill up all of my morning free-time with the making of some last-minute decorations.  Buntings, ya'll.  I know you see them everywhere, but now you see them in my Easter Brunch scene as well!


I I had the fabric leftover from Una's little raincloud nursery gift, so I just cut out a bunch of triangles that were maybe almost the same size.  No hemming, nothing fancy, just a bunch of great fabric scraps sewed to a ribbon.  A few trees willing to don them was a bonus.  Blew up 10 or 12 balloons, and there, the brunch scene was set in our very rustic new backyard.  Ready for our first holiday gathering!

The Easter dress I made Tulah worked out just fine.  Maybe it was the weather that worked out just fine??

Knoxer got some rad little shorts and Crocs for Easter.  Easter Bunny found super-tough-soled Crocs at Nordstrom Rack for ten bucks.  They help him to jump super high.

We had decorated our seasonal tree with hollowed out eggs.  Kiddos painted them with kool-aid.  Just mixed a few drops of water into the packet of Kool-Aid and what do you know!  Easter Egg Paint.

Those blown-out eggs were not wasted!  I saved the insides, whipped in a few things, and baked them in my muffin-top pan.  Perfect for breakfast croissants.

Delicious homemade lemon-raspberry cheesecake... Since the (not homemade) key lime pie would have been lonely without one.

 After brunch, the in-laws left and our amigos started trickling in.  I warmed up the soups I had made the day before (One white minestrone with fennel and Italian sausage... our favorite!!  The other, a winter squash stew with lentils for our vegetarian friends.)  I tossed my rising dough in the oven, set out deviled eggs and some leftovers from the morning, and forced people to eat.

The dads hid eggs, the kiddos found them, and I took pictures.  I have lots of photos, but they're on fb so I won't post them here again.

There's something awesome about the shift in holiday celebrations after you have babies.  They get bigger, they make friends.  Your friends start having babies.  When the holidays come around, you join up with other kid-bearing comrades, and the parties of yore become just a big comfy hangout.  The kids are all at an age where most of them just play nicely, so parents aren't stressed out about what their kid is doing.  No one needs to get a babysitter.  The dads can still have a beer or two, and a second helping of piping hot soup.  I just looked around at our friends and thought about how lucky we are to have people in our lives who feel like family.  I was actually really sentimental about it.  I think that I saw a glimpse of why this chapter in our new house is going to be such a great one.  I felt at home here, feeding our friends with kids running all over the huge yard.  WHICH they found fascinating, by the way.  I love to feed people, love sitting down at a picnic table and finding conversation there.  Love overhearing parents' feeble attempts at discouraging their kids from eating another piece of chocolate.  That day, we parents let our kids eat junk, while we relaxed and ate a warm meal for once.  It was peaceful.  I have been picturing almost weekly summer hangouts over here, in our big backyard.  The pretty Spring day made me excited for the start. 

I just realized that we're half way through our first year here, and yet we still have so many more firsts ahead of us.  Lots of beginnings- as many as we need, hopefully!

Hope you had a happy Easter too, you guys!

ps.  I'm going to take a vote on whether you think we need to find ourselves a good projector for summer movie nights in our backyard.  Think about it and I'll let you know when polls are open!

1 comment:

  1. Ummmm, you know my answer to this questions. YES YES and more YES to the projector! We can rent the same movies at the same time and pretend that we are at the same drive in... hashtag doitdoitdoit