Happy Monday Morning Friends!
It honestly feels like a strange Monday morning-- it's foggy here, and Mondays feel a little bit, hmmm...what's the right word right now? Ambiguous?
Monday's feel a little bit ambiguous these days.
Where are we going (with school work)? What are we doing (with school work and around the house)? Who needs my laptop at which hour of the day for which Zoom call or Google classroom assignment?
And, maybe we should attempt to fold the laundry that we had good intentions of folding and putting away this weekend.
I'd be lying if I said I feel fully ready for this Easter week with the kids-- this Easter week at home.
I do a really good job at being the mommy cheerleader with a smile on my face in front of the kids. I've told them (with my super big mom cheerleader smile) that this is going to be a GREAT week and a WONDERFUL Easter, despite all of the changes that have happened, but on the inside...
On the inside, I'm feeling a little bit unsure. Not about Easter itself...the truth of Easter is profound and powerful and never changing, and that is something that we can communicate to our children over and over this week.
But it is a year without all of the hoopla (Easter egg hunts, activities, Easter bunny visits, the Broadway market (if you live in Buffalo), etc.), and for better or worse our children have grown up with all of these traditions that are suddenly not part of their experience this year (as hoopla-ish as they might seem to us).
My girls also still wishing we were going to Florida and Aubrey was lamenting yesterday that we won't be eating the corn soufflé made by grandma, or Aunt Katie's potato casserole.
"Ooohhh, that corn thing, Mom," Aubrey said of Grandma's corn souffle. "And the potato thing...they're SOOO good! And we're not going to Grandma's," she said sadly.
"I know, kiddo, but we'll still have a great dinner here! I'll try to make all of those things," I promise... with my cheerleader smile.
Of course I will attempt to re-create the dishes that my family makes, but they always taste better in community made by the family people who usually make them, and as we struggled to create an intentional Live Stream church experience in the middle of the living room with the kids yesterday morning, I was lamenting the fact that we couldn't be in a sanctuary worshipping and listening in real time, with our real, in-life worship leaders, and pastors and Sunday School teachers.
I keep reminding myself of this though, if this time is teaching us anything, it is teaching us to not take many, many things for granted: People. Life. Time together. Fellowship at our churches...and the list goes on. And that's a very good thing.
In the meantime, despite some ambiguity and uncertainty, we do what we do best as moms...we jump in and make the most of what's in front of us, with a smile on our face, for our kids.
So, here's what we're up to to celebrate Easter today and this week:
*For My Own Quiet Time:
I'm using the YouVersion Bible App Devotional
If you search "Easter" in the Bible App on your phone, you can find quite a few reading plans. I picked a simple one to use in my morning prayer time, along with my own reading of the scriptures where I'm moving between the gospel accounts of Holy Week.
*With the Kids:Eastern Hills Wesleyan Church Family Resources:
We are using the "Walking Through Holy Week: Bring the Easter Story to Life For Your Kids" booklet that we received from a local church (Eastern Hills Wesleyan) during an online family Easter event they did last week.
I thought the booklet was posted online, but couldn't find it when I looked this morning. I'm going to reach out to their children's director today to see if I can get the link and post it here for you (so check back later today if you're interested).
They do have some great resources posted on their Children's Ministry page that you can access from home though:
And here some links to other FREE Family/Children's resources I found online to help you celebrate Easter as well:
-Saddleback Church's Kid's YouTube Channel:
-Children's Ministry.com Website:
If you search "Holy Week devotional" in their search bar, a list of links to multiple family activities and reading plans comes up. Here is the link to that search:
-Focus on the Family:
This Holy Week Family Activity Guide also offers some great suggestions for activities and readings you can engage your kids in throughout the week (broken down by age). I really like the white t-shirt activity suggested in the "Tween" section.
-Some other Easter activities we're going to try today, just for fun:Paper Easter Egg Templates
I found these Easter Egg templates online. I'm going to print them out on cardstock and have the girls decorate them with markers, glitter glue, washi tape, and whatever else I can find around the house later (photos to come tomorrow!)
This craft description actually uses the word "messy", but hey, we're home, the house is kind of a mess anyways, and these look really cool if they actually work! (Again, pictures to come tomorrow!).
These have become one of our favorite ways to talk about the Easter story with our girls. We made ours three or four years ago and they are in need of some updating, so we're going to work on them this week. We always pull ours out on Good Friday as a kid-friendly way to talk about the Easter Story.
Here's a photo of our well-used Resurrection Eggs that we're going to update this week:
This was my favorite link to making them online. We'll be working on ours on Thursday, but I wanted to share the link today so you could start looking for the items around the house, or add them to your list if you're heading to the grocery store (though please don't go out on an extra occasion for anything you weren't planning on this week):
One last thing...One of my favorite sources for online printables is a website called the Hope Ink Blog. I don't know Emily Hope, but I love her work and when I popped into my email this morning I saw this link to her free Easter Printables. I've ordered cards from her website before, and have printed out a number of her Images for use around the house. They feel like little rays of sunshine to me when I need some visual encouragement in my week. Here's an example of one of her printables (that I LOVE), and the link to them online:
Lastly, here are our crafts from yesterday...our palm leaves and coloring pages (mine is the one that is still unfinished!):