It's Easter and I'm sure most of you have all been busy preparing for this special season. When I reflect back to my early years, I remember my Mother baking Paska in coffee tins. We always painted eggs on Saturdays and I don't know why, but colored eggs tasted so much better. Today, I feel blessed to share with you how we can continue passing down some of our Easter traditions to the next generation, by just living normal lives and involving them.
I've always enjoyed baking with the little ones. Ivy is more than content to sit on my kitchen island with a few baking cups and a handful of dough as she continuously becomes the taste tester. It's delightful to watch her create her own version of Oma's Paska. Can you hear us singing in the background the old German nursery rhyme? Backe Backe Kuchen (Pat a cake)
Another grandchild, Silas seemed somewhat pleased when I pulled out my large Easter box and found our favorite decorations. He unpacked all the little ornaments and carefully arranged them on the mantle, and it did not take long before cousin Ivy came over and discovered her favorite bunnies. These times give opportunities to share with the children the symbols of Easter which are rich in meaning.
As you can see, my kitchen island has been built with dual purposes. It's just the perfect level and there is always lots of space. Silas was interested in painting the eggs, and so we tried some new experiments, but we both did not like the results, so we fell back to the true and tested method of using colored dye from the package. Eggs are the epitiome of promised life. Life has been sealed away for a time resulting in new life. Jesus is the gift not only of life, but of eternal life.
Bunnies, birds and chicks, are all newly born creatures which remind us of the the new birth of Christ. Because of Easter we can become 'new creatures'.
Paska itself is a sweetened citrus bread dough usually eaten on Sunday. It comes from the Hebrew language representing life and the rising of Christ
The Seerney spread is something that my Grandmother always made. One can never have enough of this yummy cheese spread. Ellen's Russian heritage brings us this specialty recipe. The cross and letters that you see also have strong meaning to our Christian faith: X meaning Kree Stos 'Christ' B meaning Vos krees 'Arose'. 'Christ Arose'
And at the end of Saturday, don't you all remember how our moms and grandmothers would get on their hands and knees and wash the floors? It's wonderful when our little grandchildren can work along side of us.
What are your favorite traditions?
Wishing you special joy as you make your last minute Easter preparations.