Thursday, 24 March 2016

The Way the Bunny Hops - 9 Easter Activities that don't involve candy

With Easter being early this year I can't help but groan at the thought of yet another candy filled (and fuelled) occasion.  There is still Valentine's chocolate in our cupboards and I'm bracing for even more. With the weather being up and down (ice storm today and 11 degrees and sunny by Sunday) it can be hard to know what to focus on during a long weekend that doesn't involve copious amounts of treats.

9 Easter Themed Activities to enjoy that don't involve chocolate

Easter Egg Painting circa 2013

Have an Easter Yarn Hunt
Basically you tie one end of a sizeable ball of yarn to your start location (think the door knob of your child's door) and then wind the yarn wherever you can think, up and down stair cases, in the kitchen, bathroom you name it!  Your child has to follow their yarn everywhere to the very end where their prize or Easter basket is (which doesn't have to be chocolate).  If you have more than one kid, designate a yarn colour to each child to follow.

Teach your child the real story of Easter (the one that doesn't involve a bunny)
I was raised in an agnostic family, while Chris's family attended every Sunday during his childhood. Despite our lack of church my father made it a priority to integrate bible stories and Greek Mythology into regular bedtime reading rotation, this paired with being an English major in university, who routinely wrote essays about biblical imagery in literature has given a fairly good understanding of certain facets of the bible.

A number of months ago we were at church for a baptism of a friends' daughter, in the middle of the service Molly turned to me and asked, "Who's the guy in all the pictures on the wall, the guy with the beard?"  It felt like a big parent fail to me.  Religious debate aside, there are some great lessons and interesting tales to discuss in some bible stories. While you may not want to lead off with the death and resurrection of Jesus, as that could be pretty scary to many little ones, you might want to consider adding some bible stories into your reading rotation.  I found this blog entry on teaching your kids about Christian Easter without scaring them senseless.

Paint some eggs
This is a huge tradition in our house that also gets some brightly coloured, healthy protein into everyone's belly while we do a little arts and crafts.  The only break the egg, you have to eat it, like now!  To read in more detail about the egg painting tradition click here.

Easter Scavenger Hunt
Indoors, outdoors, it doesn't matter, let the weather and your mood dictate where and when you play.  You can write clues, or simply hide plastic eggs filled with non-candy treats like hair clips, elastics, stickers, temporary tattoos and more.  Have really little kids....Consider a bathtub sensory easter egg hunt.

Easter themed healthy meals
Pinterest and other online resources are filled with fun recipes and food ideas with varying levels of difficulty for creating your own Easter Theme meals.  From bunny shaped pancakes, to veggie displays shaped like carrots, or bunny shaped devilled eggs there are a number of things you can create for or with your kids that err on the side of healthy.

Dino Eggs
Last year Molly and Jack's Aunt and Uncle bought them a hatching Dinosaur egg....Not really entirely Easter themed, but they got a big kick out of watching it "hatch" all weekend long.

Easter Themed Crafts
You can go simple with printing out Easter or Spring themed pictures to colour or paint, or you can make something a little more elaborate.  My favourite ideas include a Popsicle stick baby duck, shaving cream Easter eggs, and paper plate bunnies.  For access to 40 easy Easter crafts click here.

Watch some Easter themed movies
These can be spring or Easter themed movies.  Consider watching Hop, Winnie the Pooh, Springtime with Roo, or The Prince of Egypt (Molly and Jack love this movie, again a movie that is based on a bible story).

Looking at the baby geese circa spring 2012

Go for a walk and see some baby animals
Ate a ton of Cadbury Cream Eggs?  Don't worry, walk off some of that chocolate at a local park.  If you're lucky you might run into some baby animals.

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