Happy Easter! Yes, I know. Easter is over. I haven’t forgotten.
I might be a tad forgetful from time to time, but I do manage to remember the important stuff.
And for me, Easter is important. But just because the actual day is over, doesn’t mean I can’t continue to celebrate it.
“May you never forget what is worth remembering, nor ever remember what is best forgotten.” ~ an Irish blessing
One of the ways I celebrate this holy holiday is to continue remembering. I remember the amazing gift my Savior provided for me on the cross. I remember He arose from the tomb defeating death and because of that, my real home isn’t here on this temporal earth, it’s somewhere eternal.
And this Easter, I remembered Easters in the past. Maybe it’s true what Mark Twain said about life when he made this comment: “What is human life? The first third, a good time; the rest, remembering about it.”
I find myself spending quite a chunk of time now days remembering. Maybe it’s that empty nest syndrome. Maybe it’s because holidays are so different now than they were when I was a kid or when my children weren’t all grown up, married, and off on their own.
Or maybe it’s just my age. Regardless, I remember. Papa and I spent this Easter weekend with middle daughter and son-in-law in the state to the south of us. And while it was a different Easter, it was wonderful and we enjoyed being with them for the weekend.
But I found myself remembering these things: Easter when I was a little girl with white gloves and an Easter bonnet. The smell of Easter lilies and hyacinths.
My own little girls decked out in frilly dresses, fancy socks, and brand new Easter shoes and son in Easter finery, little boy style. Easter baskets, laden with goodies and always a white chocolate cross, and egg hunts.
Back then, we celebrated the Resurrection at Sunrise services and in worship. Easter was a busy day full of good times, special services, and big home cooked meals. Often because we lived several hours and many miles from our families, we celebrated the day with good friends.
When we lived in the Midwest, our church family became our family and we were very close to them. One family in particular became our best friends. We loved them and their three teenage daughters who became our children’s baby-sitters. We spent much time at each other’s homes enjoying good company, good friendship, and good food and celebrated some Easters together.
During our eight years living in Kansas City, I remember receiving special delivery packages sent to us from my husband’s parents back in our home state. The box was filled with candy Easter eggs, lovingly handmade with delicious creamy centers, dipped in chocolate, and wrapped in different colors of foil to connote each flavor – butter cream, coconut, peanut butter, chocolate, cherry, and mint.
The tasty concoctions were made by my in-laws’ church and sold as a fund-raiser for many years. My children’s grandparents actively helped make thousands and thousands of these eggs which made the treats even more special.
The recipes for the creamy egg centers were a closely guarded secret, but my mother-in-law received permission to share them with me, so I could give them to our Midwest church ladies fellowship group. Our intent was to make eggs as our own fundraiser for special mission projects.
But before I could get involved in the egg-making fundraiser, my husband received a job transfer and our family was on our way to the Pacific Northwest to live. There would be no candy egg making for me.
Furthermore, there would be no more of those special candy Easter eggs for our family. Shortly after we moved to our new home on the West Coast, my father-in-law passed away and my mother-in-law moved to a new community to be closer to family. She attended a different church there, so the special Easter egg deliveries to our home stopped.
But I’ve always remembered those specially made Easter eggs. That’s why the box I found in my mailbox just a few days before Easter was such an amazing surprise.
It was postmarked from our old Kansas City suburb and the return address showed the package was from our dear friends there. When I opened the box, I laughed out loud with delight!
An egg carton, filled with one dozen chocolate covered Easter eggs, lovingly made by hand by the Ladies Fellowship in the little Kansas City area church we so loved, nestled inside that box.
Yummy Easter eggs with butter cream, coconut, peanut butter, chocolate, cherry, and mint fillings!
As I cut open one and savored a bite of the creamy coconut filling, I paused to remember. I remembered with love my wonderful mother-in-law, who left this earth 15 years ago. And I remembered her gracious sharing of this Easter egg legacy with not just us, her family, but with our church half a country away from her.
As I took another bite, I remembered with love and thanksgiving the enduring friendship we’ve sustained with our Midwestern friends. Those friends have continued the Easter egg legacy there at our former church for 21 years, if I figured the math correctly.
On this best day of the year, I’m enjoying my satisfying Easter remembrances. I fondly reminisce about beloved family and cherished friends while I taste a little chocolate covered egg, and a scripture comes to my mind.
“I thank my God every time I remember you.” ~ Philippians 1:3