Wednesday, April 04, 2007
Move Over, Easter Bunny
Since I'm American and my husband is Italian, we've always tried to give our children the best of both worlds--two languages, two home countries, two cultures...and two kinds of Easter eggs.
In Italy, there is no Easter Bunny, not like there is in America. That's right, the Easter Bunny DOES exist. Yup. For sure. Definitely. (Can you tell my 7-year-old daughter is reading over my shoulder?) And the Easter Bunny does visit our house...he hops right over the Atlantic, carrying baskets for my children. Nice of him to make the effort, don't you think?
Italian kids don't dye eggs, they don't do the baskets with fake grass, and there are no Easter egg hunts. What they do have are these gigantic chocolate eggs wrapped in foil. This photo was taken at my in-law's house 3 years ago when my daughters were 4 and almost 2. As you can see, the package is almost as tall as my then 2-year-old. Each egg has a surprise inside--a stuffed animal, a game, etc.
They even have eggs for adults. Last Easter, my 23-year-old niece got an egg from her grandparents with a necklace inside. Some have scarves, some even have lingerie.
Three years ago, my girls were too young to be influenced by brand names. Ah, the innocence. Now that they're older, they don't just want any old egg--nay. It has to have their favorite cartoon characters or just the right prize inside. Ah, it warms the heart to think the real Easter message is coming through loud and clear, doesn't it? (??)
If you look closely, you'll notice more foil on the table behind my girls. Since there isn't an Easter Bunny to dole out the goodies, kids receive eggs from all the adults in their families--parents, grandparents, uncles, and aunts. And in Italy, most families aren't usually scattered across the country, as they often are in the U.S.
Let me tell you, this makes for a lot of eggs. Which makes for a lot of chocolate. Which makes for a lot of weight put on by loving parents like myself who are simply trying to save their children from becoming victims of chocolate overdose.
Oh, the sacrifices we parents make for our kids. (As I reach for another piece of chocolate... )