New Traditions this Easter

My Easter Sunday began with spilled sangria and ended with Pizza Hut. And somewhere between those two events I realized holidays may look different than what I’m used to.

Since getting married and living in a country different from the one where I grew up, I often find myself trying to re-create familiar traditions–especially for certain holidays. On Christmas morning I was adamant about making homemade cinnamon rolls because my mom used to make them every year. So with unopened wedding gifts and half-unpacked suitcases covering the floor and I set-out to make homemade cinnamon roles for Christmas. They didn’t taste like moms.

Growing up Easter was celebrated by wearing a new dress to church, eating a big family brunch and having the most orderly Easter egg hunt imaginable. My mom counted, color-coordinated and hid in height-appropriate places each of our  respective colored eggs.  I looked for the green ones, my sisters had the purple and yellow ones respectively and my brother had the blue ones. There was no fighting over who had more and no race to find them the fastest. We all had the same number, same contents.

For many years Easter has looked different. I spent one Easter on a road trip with my best friend. Another “singing” in the church choir at the request of the choir director who asked my roommate and I if we could smile and clap.

Easter is not really one of my favorite holidays, but for some reason this year all holidays feel important– including Easter. I fill the need to re-claim or re-create some tradition that we now do every Easter. I thought of my options. Riding a scooter gets in the way of my dress wearing capabilities and we don’t have any little ones in our lives yet who would appreciate the joys of colored eggs. I often have reflected on the meaning of Easter, but sometimes have a hard time going to church. I suggested to G that we host a brunch. I found two recipes I had been wanting to try and we invited friends over.  I started baking the day before. Lemon Blackberry cake done. Vegetable Strata in the fridge waiting to be baked. And the sangria was mixed with cut-up fruit floating on top.

Everything was ready.

Until, exactly T-2 hours before people were supposed to arrive, I spilled the entire pitcher of sangria.

Red juice ran under the fridge, across the kitchen and splattered on my flip-flops. I groaned in pure frustration. I couldn’t be mad at anyone because it was my fault, so I became very angry at the pitcher. G, who handles all changes and most emergencies with a quick calmness, grabbed a mop for the floor and a towel for my feet. He volunteered to go to the store for the second round of OJ and wine, before I even asked.

I put the strata in the oven and paper plates on the table. Two friends came early to help set-up and keep the flies away from the food. Another couple came with their three little kids and a few more strolled in later in the afternoon. The boys played fútbol with the kids at the park behind out house, the ladies sat and talked and took turns passing around the adorable baby.  It wasn’t exactly family brunch; it was something different. It was good.

Perhaps, it will become a new tradition.

However, not sure about dinner at Pizza Hut.

But then again, Easter in Guatemala may look different. Sangria and Pizza Hut, why not?

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Just for the record this is how Easter’s used to look:

I love ’em. And now that we all live in different time zones we blog. yep, all of us (sans the parents).

You can follow Steph here, Christine here and my brother, Andrew here. I think they’re are pretty fabulous. I mean in three clicks you can get recipes, fashion and pop culture, Italian mafia secrets and a inside look at the business world. enjoy.

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