Family life in the Easter/Passover divide

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On a few mornings during this past week, my 4 year old daughter Neve has crawled out of bed and asked, “Is today when I can’t eat bread?”

When I say, “No, that starts Friday night, when Passover begins,” her whole body visibly relaxes.

It’s more than a little comical. Neve’s (admittedly very narrow) eating life focuses primarily on things not kosher for Passover: bread, dry cereal, and hummus. This is a girl who often eats slices of bread as a snack, so the thought of going without her first food love for several days is clearly causing her a little, well, tsuris.

In the past, only Joe kept Passover – since he’s the official Jew and all, in addition to being an adult – but last year, we took a step toward easing me and the girls into this holiday tradition. The compromise? We left bread items in the house, but none of us were allowed eat any of it when we were at home during those 8 days; and when the girls ate at school (and I ate at work), or out at a restaurant, all Passover bets were off.

This year, though, we’re trying to go all in. The girls are intrigued by the idea of gathering and selling our Chametz – though Neve keeps mistaking that word for “hummus” – to a neighbor and then buying it back after Passover; I am, too, since I’ve never done this before. And in this post-layoff time of upheaval and transition, I’m making a more concerted effort to be a little adventurous, and thus keep depression and self-doubt at bay. Continue reading

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Our ludicrously late Easter Bunny

A fitting image, given how late our Easter Bunny was with the eggs this year.

A fitting image, given how late our Easter Bunny was with the eggs this year.

This past Monday, the day after Easter, just before walking to pick up the kids from preschool, I shoved chocolate kisses and eggs into plastic eggs and walked around our front- and backyard, hurriedly placing them near just-blooming flowers, trees, the trampoline – everywhere.

Why? Because even though I’d been patting myself on the back Saturday evening – I’d picked up a few dollar items from Target days earlier in order to make modest Easter baskets for both Lily and Neve – the girls awoke on Sunday morning, and after seeing the baskets, Lily excitedly said, “We have to find the eggs the Easter Bunny hid!”

A stomach-plummeting, “oh, sh*t” parenting moment, to say the least.

“Uh, I don’t know,” I said, looking across the kitchen at Joe, who grimaced. “I don’t think I’ve seen any eggs this morning. Maybe the Easter Bunny hasn’t had the chance to hide eggs here yet. He’s got lots and lots of baskets to deliver.”

Lily looked puzzled, and I understood why. Not the best quick-on-your-feet explanation, Mom. Continue reading