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Challenge: Your Special Traditions

Easter in the Eyes of My Teen Boys

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I always feel guilty that we don’t prepare for Easter as much as we celebrate Christmas. It's Holy Saturday and I am now just putting up the Easter decorations. My husband and I do not eat flour or sugar, but I still love to bake with the kids. I asked the boys, “How would you feel if we did not bake the bunny cake this year?” Every night on Holy Saturday, we decorate the Peeps cake since Ryan was one year old. Ryan wasn’t having it. “We’ll bake the cake. We’ll do it. Just buy the stuff.” “ Ryan I can’t find Peeps bunnies anywhere. They only have the chicks and they don’t have the purple and the green.” “It’ll be fun to make a chicks cake, Mom. Three colors is good. I’ll do it so you can clean.” They remember.

My 14-year-old son Glenn overheard me on the phone telling my mother-in-law not to bring Easter flowers. "Every year they die," I said, "and they’re too big to put on the table. Save your money. My yard is full of flowers and your son planted pansies in the flower box." Glenn wouldn’t hear of it. He was in the store with his father buying candy and he bought me a beautiful bouquet of spring flowers. They remember.

The boys are watching the 76ers basketball playoffs at a friend's house tonight. It is Holy Saturday. Ryan pipes up, “Mom, pick us right up after the game so we can color the eggs. Don’t be late. And make sure to find the recording of 'The Ten Commandments!'” We have a TV in our kitchen, and every year we watch that movie when we dye eggs. We’ve never finished the whole four-hour movie, and Ryan said he wants to make it to the end this year. We’ll see. They remember.

All those years I stayed up until 4 o’clock in the morning ironing tablecloths and stuffing Easter eggs to quietly hide them all over the house. All those years polishing silverware at 3 AM and baking the ricotta pie. It was so worth it. All those years when the boys were little, and I was 90 pounds overweight, I was extremely inflamed and I also had brain fog. Hosting a holiday was a big stress. Those days are long behind me now. My house runs like a well-oiled machine, things are in order, and I actually have fun getting ready for the holidays. But it’s still hectic. My guess is that I will be up until midnight tonight. It’ll be so worth it. Because they remember. TODAY Parents

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