Monday, April 9, 2012

Easter Island

Part of the draw of our sabbatical is the possibility of giving Anabel one more year of childhood, and consequently, slowing the speed of which her younger brother and sister's childhood passes, as well. Anyone with older brothers or sisters knows that when the oldest learned something about the adult world, they couldn't wait to spoil it for their beloved younger siblings.  Anabel has always been our imaginative child preferring to read, write or play pretend in her free time.  Unlike most of her friends at home, she still believes in fairies, Santa and even, the Easter bunny with all her heart.  I want to keep it that way.  No, I don't want her laughed at or ridiculed by her peers, but I don't want to see her innocent world of believing - of having faith in the unseen- to end.
Aren't we all asked to believe things we can't see?  I wasn't there when men walked on the moon, but I believe it happened.  I can't see the love my mother has for me when she berates me again for spending a year away from home, but I know it's there.  I didn't see Jesus heal the sick or turn water into wine, but I believe He did.  I can't see God while I'm praying, but I feel He's there.  How can we get through life without a little faith in the unseen? And oh, to have the faith of a child!  C. S. Lewis said, "Faith is the art of holding on to things your reason once accepted, despite your changing moods." Or your changing age, as the case may be.

Of course, it is easier to believe when you THINK you've seen.  Two years ago, Anabel caught the Easter Bunny in her room.  She woke to see a very tall shadow exiting her room and discovered a basket beside her bed.  She surmised that the shadow must have been the Easter Bunny, but instead of being thrilled by her discovery, she was terrified.  My goodness, he was big!  Now, I must sleep with her on the Saturday nights before Easter to guard against that massive bunny.

This year, Emma wasn't worried about Anabel's Harvey-sized rabbit; she fretted about having no Easter baskets as we had left our traditional baskets at home in Canton.  Unfazed, she immediately found a solution.  Laundry baskets.  They're bigger and hold more treats!  However, her fears were unwarranted as the Easter Bunny provided his own baskets this year.

As with Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas, we created new ways to celebrate Easter:

With a new friend from St. Helena Island, the kids hunted for eggs on appropriately named Hunting Island.

We shared our love of scavenger hunts with friends from Delaware.

The kids roamed the island in teams competing to find all items on the list to win a prize.  Some articles they took literally; some items they took figuratively.

For example, one item on the list was a photo of our neighbors, Steve and Mary.  Here's their beautiful portrait:

 Another item was a photo of a butterfly.  Now, I didn't think finding a live butterfly would be difficult thanks to our early spring, but here's what one team came up with:

I like kids that can see more than one solution to a problem!

Our Easter was unique this year in many ways, but the same in many others. While our children are not the little ones they used to be in their Easter dresses, suits and hats, we still celebrated our faith that the stone was rolled away and the Living Christ was not found with the dead, but among the believers.  While we shared the holiday with friends rather than family, we found communion just the same.

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