Hippity, Hoppity, Happy Easter Day

Easter is just one day away, and that can only mean one thing; it’s time to decorate eggs! I don’t know about you, but egg decorating is one of my favorite pre-Easter activities. I have fond memories of sitting around the kitchen table decorating eggs with my family. My brother, sister, and I were always in awe of our finished eggs and tried to outdo each other with creativity.

I just had to reminisce a bit here. My first memories of decorating Easter eggs were with these two, after all. Although we are not decorating eggs in this photo, we look like we may be ready for Easter. What cuties!

Decorating eggs is a tradition I’ve continued with my own family. Or at least my girls. My hubby doesn’t enjoy the messy, disorganized chaos that ensues when children drop eggs in colored dye. We’ve spared him the headache the last several years and had our fun while he is at work. It’s better for all involved that way!

Another flash back! Our very first time decorating eggs. I will treasure these moments for years to come.

Each year, the girls and I try different techniques. We’ve written on eggs with white crayon before dyeing them. We’ve wrapped them with rubber bands and experimented with mixing colors. Every year, we use a store bought kit with the little color disks that dissolve in water and vinegar. This year we broke all our rules while keeping with our egg decorating tradition.

We didn’t buy a dye kit. Instead, we tried three different techniques with three very different results. This was the year for trying the Pinterest ideas I pinned years ago plus an awesome egg decorating contraption featured on Shark Tank. And guess who joined us for the non-messy technique? My hubby!

The colors and designs on these eggs blew us away! They were so fun and easy, but by far the messiest technique we tried this year!

First, we made what we called Tie-Dyed Eggs. In a nutshell here are our steps:

  1. Soak hard boiled eggs in vinegar for 10 minutes. Pat dry.
  2. Spoon a thawed container of Cool Whip into a 9×13 pan.
  3. Dot Cool Whip with food color (we used neon colors) and swirl with a wooden skewer (a spoon handle or popsicle stick would work too).
  4. Roll eggs in colored Cool Whip. Let dry 10 minutes.
  5. Carefully rinse excess Cool Whip from eggs.
  6. Admire the beautiful creations.

I have to admit, I read directions on this technique a few years ago and went by memory. I half expected the eggs to still be white when I rinsed them off. My memory served me well. If I had to do this all over again though, I’d wear rubber gloves. My finger tips currently look like the rainbow.

These eggs! They were easy and had fun results!

We were out of hard boiled eggs but not out of creativity, so I decided to try one more technique on non boiled eggs. Who said dyed eggs had to be hard boiled anyway? This technique we’ll call Rice Speckled Eggs (so creative, I know). Here’s what we did:

  1. Dump uncooked rice into plastic baggies (1/4-1/2 cup, eyeballed).
  2. Add several drops of food color to the rice; one color per bag. We started with 5-6 drops and added more as needed.
  3. Squish the rice around in the bag to evenly distribute the color.
  4. Place an egg in the bag of rice and gently toss and squish the rice around the egg to transfer color onto the egg.
  5. Remove eggs and let dry.
  6. Again, admire the creative masterpieces!

I also remembered reading about this technique in the past and was pretty impressed with how the eggs turned out. It was more fun to experiment than hunt for the ‘real’ directions in the moment. One of my girls spent extra time combining the colored rice to get multi-colored speckles on the eggs. I must say, these turned out super cute!

Making memories with my girls. I had just as much fun as they did getting creative in the kitchen. We ran out of eggs way too fast!

Both of these techniques were done while my hubby was at work. While they were super fun, they definitely had a mess factor. I may be finding rice on my kitchen floor for weeks. Remembering to seal the bag before shaking an egg in rice may prevent that, just in case you’re wondering.

The Egg Mazing Decorator was super fun! I have a feeling the girls will be asking to use this before next Easter!

We saved the as seen on Shark Tank, Egg Mazing Decorator machine, technique for when the man of the house was around though. We actually saw the Shark Tank episode where this contraption was pitched. When the girls and I found it in our favorite local gift shop, Sugar Bowl, we knew we had to try it ourselves.

Supplies needed for this Eggmazing technique included: The Egg Mazing Decorator (set included markers), 4 AA batteries, and eggs (we used white plastic eggs that could be colored and decorated). Place an egg in the middle of the machine, turn it on, place marker tip on the egg, and let the magic begin!

Everyone got in on the egg decorating this year. This technique was memorizing and addicting!

We all had fun with this one. It was not messy and worked for any level of talent and creativity. I think that’s why a certain person in our house was down with giving this one a try. Or maybe it was the Shark Tank stamp of approval. Whatever it was, I’m glad all four of us were able to make egg decorating memories this year.

The final results! Its amazing what a marker and spinning egg can do.

I think when you get right down to it, no matter the technique or how beautiful the eggs turn out, the best part of the egg decorating tradition is the memories. We laughed, we created, we smiled, we spent time together. Just like I did with my family when I was young. Bringing the tradition full circle warms my heart. This Easter season, do two things: Remember the reason we celebrate this wondrous day and spend time making memories with those you love the most.

Celebrating Spring

Spring is here! Or is it? We had a dusting of snow last night, yet again. I think it’s safe to say we are all ready to say good-bye to winter once and for all! Last weekend’s celebration of Easter had us in the mood for warmer weather, blooming flowers, and bright and cheerful colors.

All ready to decorate eggs!
All ready to decorate eggs!

For me, Easter has always marked the start of spring no matter what the calendar (or weather) says. Theologically speaking, Easter is the beginning of new life. It is a joyful celebration of amazing things yet to come. Spring holds the same truth. New life is found in fields across the state as calves are born. Birds are singing and busily building nests. Early blooming flowers add cheer and color to the

Once the eggs dried, the girls added stickers to their special eggs.
Once the eggs dried, the girls added stickers to their special creations.

landscape. Lawns turn green and give us a glimpse of warmer days ahead. (This morning, I even overheard someone at the gym mention mowing their lawn.)

The promise of brighter days gives me the energy to celebrate the season with my girls. Our preparations for Easter started our spring celebration. One of my most favorite traditions is decorating eggs. I’ve loved it since I was a little girl, and I love it as a grown up. Somehow my girls always end up decorating most of the eggs, but I make sure I get one or two special ones. This year the dozen boiled eggs were

I managed to snag one egg to decorate! I placed masking tape shapes and letters on the egg before dipping it in the colored dye. This one says A {heart} C.
I managed to snag one egg to decorate! I placed masking tape shapes and letters on the egg before dipping it in the colored dye. This one says A {heart} C.

decorated in no time. I didn’t want our fun to end, so we added special touches to the eighteen other regular eggs sitting in the refrigerator. It is super fun to pull out multi-colored eggs to make scrambled eggs or cookies. I think we may need to color eggs again soon to add a little happiness to our baking. I don’t see why we need to save these special things just for the holidays!

We used jelly beans, colored frosting, and cut marshmallows dipped in colored sugar to decorate this guy.
We used jelly beans, colored frosting, and cut marshmallows dipped in colored sugar to decorate this guy.

To add a special touch to our Easter celebration with family, the girls and I had a little adventure in the kitchen and made a springtime bunny cake. (You can find the directions I followed here, tips on making a box cake mix yummier here, and my favorite frosting recipe here.) My girls give the absolute best compliments when we are cooking together. I was told that I am ‘the best cake baker,’ and that ‘I make the best frosting.’ I’m pretty sure

The best part of making frosting is always licking the beaters. I want a mixer with three beaters!
The best part of making frosting is always licking the beaters. I want a mixer with three beaters!

they were just buttering me up so they could lick the beaters, but those comments sure do make me feel good! And, its those special little moments that all three of us will cherish for a long time.

Spring wouldn’t be complete without flowers. We had been patiently waiting for my daffodils to bloom for a couple weeks. They had become a labor of love for one of my girls. My little outdoor girl uncovered them a handful of times after the threat of frost. She gave me daily reports on the

These add a little happiness to my dining room decor thanks to a 6 year-old!
These add a little happiness to my dining room decor thanks to a 6 year-old!

clumps of green leaves and how many ‘dils’ (blossoms) were about to open. One afternoon, after she had grown quite restless indoors, I sent her outside to check on the flowers. Seconds later, she came running breathlessly into the house asking for my special flower cutter. She proudly brought back a fistful of ‘dils’ and leaves to arrange in a vase. They now sit in the middle of our dining room table for all to admire.

Our springtime adventures have only just begun. We have seeds to plant and parks to explore. We have baby birds and animals to find. We have bikes to ride and sidewalks to decorate. We have so much to look forward to because spring is finally here. Be sure to take some time to create adventures and celebrate the beauty of spring!