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On Failed Traditions and Happy Easters

Remember last week when I wrote about my ride-or-die approach to traditions? Let me tell you how the new Easter traditions I tried to squeeze in this year went down.

A) Cascarones: Hit three stores to try and find them already made, and they were gone. Didn’t feel like cramming confetti through a small hole of an egg to make my own, so that one’s out.
B)  Eppers: The dog got into our hard boiled egg stash (don’t ask me how) which resulted in a pile of rotten egg vomit on my new floors, so that one’s out.
C) Glitter-turned-into-swirly-lollipops: I had this one. I mean, never mind the fact that World Market ran out of their big swirly lollipops so I had to get the corkscrew swirly lollipops instead, or the fact that I realized when we went to sprinkle the glitter that we didn’t have any glitter. But the kids were so excited about this new discovery–that the Easter Bunny will actually turn glitter into lollipops–I couldn’t let them down.

So I scrambled, somehow convincing the kids that the piece of glittery scrapbook paper I found in my desk was the same thing as glitter and that of course the bunny would transform it into lollipops. So we threw the piece of pink glitter paper on the lawn with a large wilted carrot I found hidden in the back of my produce drawer, and after the kids went to bed, I snuck back out to remove the carrot and the makeshift glitter and replaced them with three corkscrew lollipops I shoved into the ground. “This is going to be so awesome,” I told myself. “They’re going to remember this forever.” What I didn’t realize was that the lawn would get very wet in the night, and that animals would be interested in the lollipops, and that ants like sugar.

No sooner had the sun cast its first ray, and my kids were peering out the window, breathlessly excited, trying to make out if there were lollipops where the glitter paper had been left.

“Go see!” I said, preparing for a proud motherhood moment of “Nailed it.” This is it, man. Living the dream. I followed them out to the magic spot…

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…and there, poking out of the grass, were three sorry lollipops, their plastic wrappers chewed through, bits of wet grass stuck to the melted goop that was seeping out the holes in the wrapper–brownish from all the colors bleeding together, ants crawling up the sticks. Nella’s stick had gotten so wet, it sort of bent in half, unable to keep the weight of the lollipop up anymore.

“Ew! It’s all goopy!” Lainey yelled.

And then Dash started crying. “Bugs! Bugs! Mine has bugs!”

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Trying to save the moment, Brett piped up with some bullshit about “Oh, the lollipops aren’t to eat; they’re just to show you magic!” because the Easter Bunny is a dick. And then we watched three disappointed kids toss their magic lollipops into the garbage, and I heard Dash say “Disgusting.”

So, Happy Easter. It was quite possibly our finest moment of parenthood yet.

Redemption comes in egg hunts and Easter baskets, little bunny tracks throughout the house and a big family breakfast.

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There was a great discussion on Instagram yesterday after a friend asked me if Lainey still believes–moms talking about how they handle that bridge age and so many good ideas for embracing both the wonder of childhood and their maturing imagination. I think every kid is different as is every parent, and each family finds their own approach to make believe and making holidays special. But I sense that she loves all this magic, even if it’s with a wink and an unspoken understanding of what it means. I look forward to inviting her to help create the magic for her siblings because she’ll love that, but right now, we’re still playing along…like we probably always will, even when all three are winking with the knowledge of the secret.

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The day before Easter, we hit our local U-pick farm to gather flowers for our brunch table.

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I’ll be so sad when this field is picked over for the season. The sunflowers are already gone, but there were still plenty of snap dragons.

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I hope you all had a great Easter, failed traditions or not.

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We’re still enjoying a day off today. I was in Target this weekend when Heidi called to inform me of some very important news. “What I’m about to tell you is going to blow your mind,” she said. “Are you ready?”

“Tell me,” I said, bracing myself.

“The school starts the alphabet countdown next week for the end of the year. We only have an alphabet to get through before summer. That means we can officially give up next week.”

Shoddy lunches and half-ass effort from here on out, folks. Summer’s coming.


Leave a Comment
  1. Andria N says:

    I turn 29 next week, and my mom still hides my Easter basket (and the basket of my 38-year-old boyfriend), still fervently believe in the magic of Santa– refusing to take any credit for the presents and filled stockings that arrive each Christmas morning, and still tears up – eyes glistening – at the sight of my brother and I partaking in our traditions. It is magic.

    It is magic.

  2. Oh how I love this. Everyone I know has these gorgeous Easter baskets with their kids’names embroidered on the. Know what my 4 kids received their goodies in (on Sat night no less because there was no way we would wake up early enough to do it before church )? Kroger bags. Ahhh memories.

  3. Shauna Mooney says:

    That picture of Dash is the most amazing, hilarious thing ever. It may feel like a disappointment now, but they are all going to die laughing over this/these pictures when they are adults.

  4. Dear Kelle, I enjoy reading your posts on the holidays are for me a great inspiration … especially those of Christmas and Easter!! Although I make every year at Easter baskets for my children, with books inside, colors, soft toys, chocolates,marshmallows and they love them very much, most of the classic chocolate eggs (which however never fail …) A special wish for a Lainey for his broken arm, I know what it means unfortunately, my daughter last summer had broken his arm (from the elbow!!) and she had to do surgery at hospital and a big plaster for a month … (a long month!!) but then everything goes… and back feel good!! Happy Easter to you and all your wonderful family, a big kiss from Italy Federica Fusco.

  5. christine says:

    Bahahahaha!! I am full out belly laughing. This is something that would have happened to me. I am the queen of Pinterest fails and traditions gone wrong. And Dash’s face… priceless! It looks like you all had a wonderful Easter and they quickly forgot about their lollipops! Maybe next year let the hubby seek out and put out the lollipops as they are waking up. 😉

  6. “Because the Easter Bunny’s a dick.” This might be your worst parenting moment but as a piece of writing, it’s classic. I’ll laugh all day!

  7. Elena f. says:

    Your writing is awesome! I was literally in tears when it got go the lollipop incident. Btw, I guess it runs in the family, I’m also a follower of your dad and I second whoever said he should collect his stories (posts) and write a book.
    I’m glad I finally have more time to go back reading your blog, truth to be told I also got lazy in relying to your IG.
    Happy belated Easter all the way from Italy.

  8. Christine says:

    I think this is a most relatable parenting HOLIDAY post. We aren’t quite 26 days away from summer but the hiring up is on the horizon. Can’t wait!

  9. I’ve had so many fails in traditions in the past (and successes too) that I can’t help giggling over the lollipops. I’m guessing you won’t be carrying on with that one. Our chickens lay the chocolate eggs around the garden. The children still remind me about the year we fed the bantams white chocolate the night before. They were not impressed by finding small, white chocolate eggs the next day on the hunt. I love the idea of a pick your own flower field.

  10. Thank you for a laugh this Monday morning and the beautiful photos of your Easter! Have a great week!

  11. Megan Rohr says:

    Cracking up at my desk this morning! Your posts give me life; seriously. Thank you for sharing with all of us. For next year – when you land those cascarones – we use them in place of a ball to pitch to the kiddos to hit with baseball bats; or tee up and hit with a golf club. Always a huge hit!

  12. I’ve had so many of these fails already and my son is only 1 1/2! I laughed so hard at this. My only Pinterest- worthy thing I did this weekend was cut a potato in half and have my son stamp with them to make Easter Eggs. That’s all I had in me! :)

  13. “…because the Easter Bunny is a dick.” Hahahaha!! Yeah. You get an A for effort, though. This is our first year with one 9 year old who’s in on the secret (she asked a few months ago), and one who’s winking and going along, even though I’m pretty sure she knows the deal.

  14. I was feeling bummed by kiddo’s lackluster response to the easter egg hunt I organized, so thanks for the laugh!

  15. Christa taylor says:

    I teach special education at an elementary school in Fort Worth and we all love it when the kindergarten classes start the alphabet countdown!!! Summer is coming!!!!!

  16. What a memorable Easter. 🐣 Your table setting is beautiful. Love the kids Pjs.
    Beautiful photos.

    Happy Easter! 🐇

  17. 4Ladybugz says:

    I love the picture of Dash holding onto the side of the sofa. Reminds me of the times when we jumped from sofa to sofa because we didn’t want to step in the lava.

  18. So 1-it all looks so perfect! How do you do it!? Your story of the lollipops cracked me up! Just goes to show that not everything is always perfect but if you have love, laughter, and family, that is really all that matters. Your kids are just adorable and I have enjoyed watching them grow over the years of reading your blog.


  19. This made me so happy to read. I missed my family’s Easter celebration this year because I am traveling for work. From afar, the pictures looked lovely, as do yours. But, I so appreciate your willingness to share what didn’t go right. In the future, I am sure to fail to give my daughter perfect holidays. You make that seem okay…even funny! :) The rest of your day looked absolutely beautiful though.

  20. I love this post so much. The glitter story is hilarious!

  21. Katherine says:

    Hysterical! I needed a good laugh today. His face holding that lollipop is priceless. Perfect capture of the moment. Still laughing…

  22. Oh my gosh, this was hilarious!! I laughed so hard (‘the Easter Bunny is a dick’). Your day looked beautiful anyway : ) I love your blog and I always look forward to reading it. You’re such a gifted writer, it’s always a pleasure. Beautiful pics too!

  23. Every Easter our easter treasure hunt involves clues to find Easter eggs hidden around the house. This year I asked my 16 year old daughter if she would prefer me to just give her her Easter goodies..her response.. “Mother please don’t ruin what’s left of my childhood ..the Easter Bunny should still leave me clues “😉

  24. I seriously just laughed until I cried at that lollipop story. Love!!

  25. This is the reason I read blogs! You captured “the mess and the magic” of parenthood all wrapped in to one, and its utterly heartwarming. Love your writing and your wit. Happy Easter.

  26. Love the post. Where are the pajamas from? One of my girls loves rabbits so I am always on the hunt for bunny duds. Thanks!

  27. Emily Streat says:

    Oh my god… the bug covered lollipops. I can just imagine what that was like and how disappointing it would be – that made me laugh so much!! Great idea though.. there’s always next year!

  28. Yes, the lollipop story is stinking hilarious!!! I love us moms…we try so very hard 😉 And yes, my boys, one married, and now my daughter-in-law all receive Easter baskets that I say have been special delivered by the bunny =)

  29. “because the Easter Bunny is a dick”

    Cackling at my desk at work right now. 10/10 will read to my husband later today. Thanks for the laughs! And our Easter tradition will start next year with about 1/5th of the chocolate we got this year because oh boy did my son not sleep a wink all weekend!

  30. I love the blue scoop back dresses the girls are wearing. Can you share where you got them?

  31. My mom and dad would hide our large, old-fashioned chocolate easter bunnies outside in the backyard for us to find. My brother and I would eagerly set off to find them, but every.single.year his easter bunny’s head or tail or some other body part was ripped off by a squirrel. And every.single.year my bunny stayed un-touched.

    To this day, my poor brother thinks every squirrel is out to get him.

  32. Oh man, Dash’s face is priceless! I laughed too hard at the lollipops in the grass! Even with the mishaps, the fun traditions we create around every holiday is what makes every one of those times special and happy memories for our kiddoes. I bet that will be one of his favorite stories to tell one day! (o:

  33. Thank you for the belly laugh I just had, and for modeling that things don’t have to be perfect to be memorable. I used to say “Good date or great story” and this one is in the great story category! Also, I’m 38 and have never told my mother that I knew about Santa Claus when I was 9 (I overheard a kid talking about him not being real in the school office!). I just figured if the presents kept coming why would I say anything?

  34. Shannon brown says:

    Omg, Kelle~I’m just catching up and had to tell you I had a few LOLs but this post took the cake!!! You crack me up! :)

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