Sunday is the day to celebrate. Whether you bask in the glory of Christ’s resurrection with a sunrise service or scour the yard for hidden eggs and chocolate bunnies, Easter is a day steeped in tradition.
Religious or not, we all crave a bit of nostalgia around the holidays. Want to enjoy Easter like you did as a child? Try incorporating some of these time-honored traditions into your day this year:
Dye Some Eggs
Dyeing Easter eggs is a tradition that dates back thousands of years. While there are plenty of stories that are told to explain the tradition, those who want to tie in the death and resurrection of Jesus have long held onto the belief that Mary Magdalene brought boiled eggs to the crucifixion and when a few drops of Jesus’ blood fell on them they turned red. Today, we dye eggs bright colors as a symbol of new life.
The tradition of the holiday, Easter baskets filled with chocolates began as a way for children to receive colored eggs from the Easter Bunny (more on him in a minute). By building a “nest” the children were inviting the bunny to lay her eggs in it. Over time, that nest became a basket.
The Easter Bunny
So, what does a bunny have to do with Jesus’ resurrection? Honestly, not much. This is one tradition you can credit to the pagans. Known to celebrate the goddess of fertility, they associated the rabbit with fertility (of course), which eventually turned into an Easter Bunny in the 1700s when the holiday became known for its celebration of the new life of springtime.
According to legend, Mary opened Jesus’ tomb at Sunrise on the third day following his death (Sunday morning). To celebrate this momentous occasion, many churches celebrate with a sunrise service.
It seems a bit odd that Christians would celebrate Easter with a ham dinner, considering that Easter is the culmination of Passover, a Jewish tradition. Still, since Christians have no pork limitations, ham has become a staple of the Easter dining table. But why? The answer is simple: in years past, it may have been the only meat available for a spring celebration. Since most hogs are butchered in the fall and left to cure all winter long, ham is the most available meat in the spring.
A basket filled with chocolate and other sugary treats is synonymous with Easter – but why? The tradition began as a way to break the fast of Lent. You see, during the 40 days leading up to Easter, many Christians give up something they love (and for children that is often sweets), as a way to honor Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross. So, on Easter morning they are greeted with a basketful of sweet treats to enjoy!
There are so many things to love about Easter – including those sticky marshmallow peeps and gooey chocolate bunnies. But don’t let a cavity rob you of the joy of relishing in the treats of the holiday. Be sure to call Wright Smiles Pediatric Dentistry to schedule a cleaning for your children after Easter to ensure that their smile remains healthy and strong.