In many years of filling (and hiding) Easter baskets, I've learned a few tricks of the trade.
- Get Your Stuff Now if you haven't already. The advantages of getting something now is that your options are still great. Go ahead and make that order from Amazon or stop by Target or your local Catholic store.
- Reduce the Sweets Some may get rid of sweets altogether, but if there is going to be any reason to splurge on sweets outside of birthdays, it's got to be Easter--the RESURRECTION OF OUR LORD! I like to go all out with one big chocolate bunny. Tell me that there's nothing better than eating the ears off of a really good milk chocolate bunny. This brings back childhood memories for me, and I want some of those unique memories associated with Easter for my children, too. My kids love fruit snacks, so I will buy them each a box of these. They fill the basket nicely. I also use favorite salty snacks, too. Beef jerky and peanut butter pretzels, for example.
- Think Outside the Box/Basket Since we are reducing the number of sweets in the basket, I try to replace that with toys and books, but not too much. It's not Christmas. I try to find smaller, unique items that encourage their faith, or encourage the gifts that God has given them. Jewelry is a great idea, especially if it is faith related. Another example is what I got my son who is into playing the guitar. I got him a new guitar strap. My other son is into baseball. I got him a new batting glove. Some moms replace the basket for other practical containers--like a shoe box with new shoes or storage bins. (Much easier to hide!) Here is what I am putting in my daughter's basket. She just turned 6. I will fill it in with a chocolate bunny ,some fruit snacks, and pretzels. (And unlike a lot of blogs out there--none of these items are from affiliates or linked. My daughter loves the Glory Stories from Holy Heroes that came with a shining light doll, "The Star" DVD, and that's a cute saint book from Our Sunday Visitor)
- Looking for a Clever Place to Hide "the goods" BEFORE Easter? This may not work for you, but we have some luggage stored in our closet and we keep the Easter presents (and any other presents) hidden inside of them.
- Lose the Easter Grass This stuff has been the bane of my Easter holidays in the past. It got everywhere. And I won't even mention what happens when the dog eats it. So I just don't use it. If you need something to fill in your basket use colored tissue paper or something that is easy to clean up. Really, the kids don't care.
- Where to Hide it on Easter Morning For those of us who hide the Easter baskets for the kids to find in the morning, here is a great tip! Have your hubby do it. If you've gone to the trouble of filling the baskets, it seems fair that your hubby can have the job of staying up until everyone is in bed asleep or waking up at the crack of dawn (always risky) to hide them. And we've hidden them everywhere--attic, dishwasher-of course, garbage can and put the garbage bag on top of it so it couldn't be found until someone took the garbage out, locked in car trunks, up fireplace chimneys, and dirty clothes piles.
Enjoy this wonderful feast together and making these precious memories with your family! God Bless!