Wednesday, April 06, 2016

E is for Easter

"Anything happening for Easter this year?" My neighbour sent me a message.

Two years ago, a couple of us had organised an Easter egg hunt for the kids. Last year, we attended the Easter party held in the community centre instead. This year, their party was scheduled at 4 pm and Xena would still be napping, so I didn't get the tickets. So yes, it looked like there was nothing happening for Easter this year.

However, that changed when my neighbour's message arrived. I decided to do something about it.

Though it was just days to Easter, I knew that this is how most successful small-scale events worked. If you plan things or send out invites too early, people are not sure of their plans and you really have to chase for the RSVPs because you need confirmed numbers. Then there are some who might say 'maybe', because they are waiting for something better to come along. Or sometimes, because of all the time there is, the whole thing balloons up into something big and then there is talk of catering and contributions and then someone has to go around collecting money, and there are accountability issues, and it just becomes a big mess. From my experience, if you plan stuff like this closer to the actual date and keep it small, only people who are genuinely interested will turn up, the RSVPs will be clear, and people will have a good time.

So I quickly booked a barbeque pit, and posted an invitation on the estate's Facebook page. I mentioned that it would be a small event, with an Easter egg hunt, some games and prizes for the kids and some pot luck snacks. As there were only a few days to the party, most RSVPs poured in within hours, and some neighbours even volunteered to sponsor some of the prizes for the games. This was great, because it meant that we could have a small prize for every kid who attended the party!

I bought some plastic Easter eggs and started planning the games. Easter egg and spoon race for the older kids and 'match the egg halves' for the younger kids. And of course, the actual Easter egg hunt for all the kids.

I'd also been thinking about making something Easter-related for the pot luck, and suddenly it struck me -- mini cupcakes with Easter eggs in nests!

I baked the cupcakes that afternoon, and just before the party, we sat down to decorate them. "You make the nests, Mama, I'll lay the eggs!" She said. LOL!

But she was a great help, because about 70 eggs needed to be 'laid'. 

I'd made the eggs with marshmallow fondant and they really did look like real eggs!

Some of them also went into her tummy during the decoration process!

Finally, we were all done!

Xena slipped into her Easter bunny costume (recycled from Halloween last year!).

I'd bought this bunny ears hairband for myself, but the woman just stole it, you know. "I'm just trying it on, Mama!", she said. But I never got to wear it. She ran off to attend the party like this. Young lady, wait till you're older; Mama will 'just try on your clothes'!

We had about 20 families and about 30 kids, and there sure was a lot of amazing food. Whoever came up with the concept of pot luck is a genius.

The Easter egg hunt was chaotic, but funny-chaotic. I actually had a whistle around my neck so that everyone could start the hunt together, otherwise the older kids would seek out everything, leaving nothing for the toddlers. Thankfully, every kid was able to find something or the other. 

The egg and spoon race was a riot too, and I was amazed at the honesty of the kids towards the rule that if your egg fell down, you could put it back in your spoon, but you'd have to go back to the start line and start all over again. 

Viv was away all day at cricket, but got back just minutes after the party had started. Armed with his DSLR with a new lens, he got some fabulous shots. 

The prizes for the kids included solar calculators from Daiso, the $2 Japanese store. The kids were thrilled to have them, but because it was dark-ish and the calculators wouldn't work, they sat around the lamps in the grass, trying to charge them. The sight was HILARIOUS!

While the kids played, the grown-ups also had a chance to mingle and catch up. And because our condominium has people from every single race and nationality you can think of, it truly was a multi-cultural event.

After we wrapped everything up, I was on a high, already feeling excited about next year's Easter party. And just then, Xena asked me what Easter was. I was stumped. What did I know about Easter? Ghanta. I only organised the Easter and Halloween parties for our condominium because there were tons of desis to take care of Holi and Diwali, but the truth is that I had no clue about what Easter was. To me, it has always been a celebration involving eggs and bunnies and hunts and food and family and friends and togetherness. In short, partayyyyy time!

Anyway, in order to answer Xena's question, I looked up 'Easter' on Wikipedia and almost fainted at the description.
Easter, also called Pascha or Resurrection Sunday, is a festival and holiday celebrating the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, described in the New Testament as having occurred on the third day of his burial after his crucifixion by Romans at Calvary c. 30 AD. It is the culmination of the Passion of Christ, preceded by Lent (or Great Lent), a forty-day period of fasting, prayer, and penance.

My head was reeling. There was no way I could explain all this to Xena. So in the end, this is what I told her. This should do. For now.
Easter is a celebration, involving eggs and bunnies and hunts and food and family and friends and togetherness. In short, partayyyyy time!


Bubblegum.... said...

I loved the food photo and your superb get-together aka party management skills but what I really really LOVED was the explanation of the celebration you gave to Xena! :D

Forget about her, I am yet to decipher all those words of the wiki page of Easter.

What did I do? I had eggjectly nothing:/

Arun said...

That is what virtually all festivals boil down to - another excuse for family, food, fun, partayyyyy.


Decorated eggs are really ancient, with there being decorated ostrich eggs from 60,000 years ago in Africa!

Anonymous said...

You are one amazing woman! You never cease to amaze me. The innumerable things that you do and the way you do it! I am an eternal fan! <3

Sayesha said...

Next Easter yahan aa ja yaar! Join the party. :D

Hear hear! :D

Thank you! :)