Good morning or by now, afternoon, everyone. Had to run a group and now can't get the post published. It's such a wonderful springlike Friday . Too nice to be indoors. I'm sitting here now listening to the birds singing a joyful tune, the trees across the street are beginning to bud, and with Easter on its way, I find myself reminded once again of days gone by...days that cannot be re-lived, but can be fondly remembered.
There are many things that were different with the celebration of Easter in the past. As a kid growing up in the 1950's, Easter was such a special time. My family was not terribly religious, but on on this day mom, dad, and myself all attended the Easter services at the Episcopal Church. When I was a kid, Easter was almost as fantastic for me as Christmas was. The preparations for Easter began weeks before as my mom searched for the perfect Easter dress and bonnet. There were also patent leather shoes to buy, and socks...and undies to match; oh, and I cannot forget the little purse. My outfits were generally in pretty pastel colors such as pink, mint green, lilac, or yellow. Everything had to match...from the top to the bottom. And, if Easter was early and cool, a new spring coat in pastel colors to match my dress was included. Some years, mom even had me don a pair gloves to match.
Then on Easter Sunday, I always arose early because I knew that the Easter Bunny had come in the dark of night and hidden eggs and a basket of jelly beans, chocolate bunnies, marshmallow peeps, and cream eggs...all nestled in plastic green grass. (Now that I am older, I sit back and wonder how I every believed the tale of the Easter Bunny delivering the eggs when "I" had helped my mom color them the day before) It was so much fun hunting for those treasures which could be found in various places throughout the house. I was allowed to taste my bunny, but then, it was time to get ready for the church service. But before going to church, there was the photo session in the front yard; I took great pride in posing for photos that should have been a lifetime of memories...but alas were all destroyed in a fire. Before leaving, my best friend, Kathleen, and I would meet to compare our Easter outfits.
Upon our arrival at church, I would join the other children for a special Sunday School lesson, and then would be allowed join my parents for the end of service...which, by the way, I never did pay much attention to. There was just far too much to see. The church was always decorated so beautifully, the flowers, the candles, and it was always special to see the men in the suits and the women in their bonnets. Back in those days, clothing was cut and dry. There was winter clothes and summer clothes and nothing in-between...you never wore white after Labor Day, etc....so this was actually the first of the pastel spring shades I would get to see. And after the service, it was on to grandma's for her traditional leg of lamb dinner with all the trimmings. Oh, my, if I close my eyes I can still picture those days.
When I had my own boys and they were still young, I tried desperately to hang on some of these traditions...the Easter suits, the colored eggs...hiding their their baskets. Why, I even broke down and took them to church...but it wasn't the same. No matter how hard I tried, I could not re-create what I had in my youth. Times change. Some things are welcome changes; others are hard to adjust to. There was no more leg of lamb. It's far too expensive nowadays. No more Easter outfits. The dress code has changed. Why, I've even seen girls walking to church on Easter Sunday in a pair of jeans. I don't know, call me old-fashioned, but I just accept that. I'm not a religious person; and it has been about 20 years since I went to church, but somehow, I still believe that Easter should remain a special day.
You know, I didn't start out today to talk about memories. It just happened. Hopefully, I didn't bore you. What about some of your memories? Do you remember when the stores used to close early on Good Friday? Stay closed all day on Sunday?