Once everyone arrived on Saturday afternoon, the egg decorating fun began. We had 5 dozen eggs to decorate and the kids did a super job! I always love the way they look nestled on the real grass. We were missing Hannah today. She was at a second prom (for her) with some childhood friends. It is one of the last things they will all do together before graduating and heading out in different directions. Although we missed her, we know these girls and knew it would be a memory for a lifetime for all of them!
After dinner, Uncle Elton got a fire going for us and we made Peeps s'mores. Yum!!
As the chilly evening got chillier, the "older" folks found their way closer and closer to the fire while the younger gang stayed in the pool. I don't know how they do it!??!
Since the Hollands all went home to sleep in their own beds, the Easter bunny visited their house early on Sunday morning while not getting to ours until a bit later as the sleepy-headed teens found their way out of bed.
Then on to the obligatory family pictures:
After a very big spread of appetizers, sandwiches and salads, we were off to the egg hunt. Every year we think that only the little ones will want to hunt eggs and every year we are wrong! The older girls enjoy this as much as the munchkins. Over the years, because of the age differences, we came to hide a different color egg for each child. That way, the older you get, the harder they are to find. The bunny gets trickier and trickier every year. Some of the eggs have candy or money and some of them have certificates to be exchanged for little gifts - it is really fun and seems as if all of the adults get involved as well!
After everyone worked off a bit of their lunch, it was time for one more celebration. Even though we did a birthday bash in NYC, the guys missed out on celebrating Hannah's #18 and Caitlin's #16 so we put some candles in the delicious homemade carrot cake, sang our hearts out and even had a few more gifts.
Happy Birthday to you! No, happy birthday to YOU!
We always give the older girls money for their birthdays. With college fees, gas prices, new clothes and just "girly" stuff, there is always something they
need want. But, since these were "landmark" birthdays, I had to have something to give them that they would keep forever. When they were each about 5 years old, we started them on silver charm bracelets. We added to it for every special event they had and actually had to go to second bracelets. Every single link on those bracelets are full - it is a "scrapbook" of memories on their wrists. But, they are FULL and loud and not something they wear all that often anymore. So, I decided it was time to do the same thing in a bit of a more fashionable and grown-up way. So, I started them each on a Pandora bracelet with their first charm being a Statue of Liberty to memorialize our birthday trip to NYC. Now I am looking forward to filling them with memories of all of the wonderful things they are destined to accomplish!
A few finishing images:
In my last post I mentioned that I was missing my very favorite irises this Easter. Well, some "bunny (in the forms of my brother and sister-in-law) found me some and brought them when they came along with hot out of the oven homemade pound cakes for each family! So delicious!
And look how beautiful my tulips were on Easter morning. I love it when they get "tulipy"!
And what to my wondering eyes should appear...the bunny (this time in the form of Morgan) left me a lovely new pot holder as an Easter morning surprise. I love it so much as there is a bit of a story to go along. I think I have posted before that every Wednesday from the time Hannah was born, I went to Gainesville and checked her (and then Morgs after she was born) out of first pre-school, then early dismissal from elementary school and eventually middle school. We would spend the day together visiting with my mom, shopping, eating out, going to the park or museum or movies or... and end the evening with first Daisies, then Brownies and on through the levels of G.S. Then I would spend the night. We all loved our time together but we would do a bit of car waiting for one or the other so I came up with different distractions. I would make up stories or read (if I wasn't driving), or quiz them on spelling or number facts or...pot holder making. Yes, while we were waiting at the dance studio for one or the other to be done, I taught them to make pot holders. It was something I loved as a girl so I thought they would too. They enjoyed it so much that I ordered special wool loops and they would make really nice pot holders for everyone in appropriate holiday colors.
Fast forward to Easter eve. Morgs must have gone in the kids' drawers looking for a game or something and found the few remaining loops and loom just sitting there. She whipped it out and made that pot holder as a remembrance for me. I love it and will keep it always-as I have EVERY other one any of the girls have made me - including very old ones that my own girls made many, many years ago!
And, last but not least. I'm sure you know how much I treasure my Santa and Easter Bunny pictures. This year daughter #3 and her kids headed to the mall for bunny pictures. They got in line (about #15 in line) at 11:20 knowing they had to leave by 1-ish to grab lunch, drop the boys here and get to the ballet by matinee time of 2 p.m. At 1:10 - when they were now second in line - the bunny needed a break. There was NO way they could do both but after having invested so much time, Jen grabbed a stuffed rabbit from a display, had the kids sit with it on the bunny's seat, snapped a fast picture and called it a day! I think that was genius and I have my picture. I love it!
I have a few loose ends to tie up today and then on to decorating for spring. Stay tuned.