Tuesday, April 03, 2012

Holy Week and Coloring Eggs Naturally

This year I spread out my "Holy Week" celebration a bit so that we did some Easter-focused activities over the course of Lent.  But this week, a few special activities seemed the most appropriate (such as the Easter mountain, which I am planning to do tomorrow). On Sunday we celebrated Palm Sunday by waving palm branches and singing and painting a picture of Jesus on a donkey.

Just beginning -- not too messy yet
Today we colored Easter eggs, and I made the dyes out of vegetables and fruits with some water and vinegar added.  I liked not buying the chemical dye since my kids are so young and apt to put the colored eggs in their mouths, and lick their fingers while dyeing them.  I took the whole operation outside so it was handy to just let the drippings run off the table and then pour out the cups in the grass.  The bees were pretty interested in the grape juice dye that was covering the entire area, but fortunately Susie was (in her words) "pretty brave of bees". :)

The dyes were really easy to make, and CHEAP since I just used stuff I had on hand.  I found the recipes I used here, and adjusted a couple of them.  I chose what I made based on what I already had, so I didn't have to go buy anything.  We did brown (coffee with a bit of vinegar), purple -- which turned gray/blue (grape juice with vinegar), orange -- this one turned out the best (simmered onion peels), blue -- which didn't look much different from purple (frozen blueberries) and yellow (spinach simmered in water -- I made this up myself because I had wilty spinach on hand).  The main drawback is that to get a deeper color at all, you had to leave them in a long time, which is a little hard with a 2 year old who kept grabbing the white eggs and popping them in cups and then popping them back out. 

But I still think they turned out pretty, and since Susie didn't know the difference, she wasn't disappointed that they were lighter colored.  She LOVES them, and LOVED the activity.  I gave her total freedom to play around with them because I wasn't concerned about the mess or her tasting them.  So as we leisurely colored eggs, we talked about how the colors made me think of Jesus (grape juice was perfect because we've been teaching her about the Last Supper so much). I will totally do this again next year!  

Finished product!

I let them play with them for a bit after we were done
Final note -- I did get the book Petook, and I liked quite a bit, but I think it was a little too old for Susie.  The wording is kind of flowery, but on part of it, I just told about the story and pointed at the pictures.  Maybe in a couple years it would be worth buying, and certainly if you have school-aged kids.

Tomorrow is big for us, since we are traveling this weekend -- so we're fitting in a bunch of stuff early.  We're doing the Easter mountain, and having a special Easter supper to celebrate.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Chip on the ground in the first picture is...hilarious! he looks ticked, but I'm sure he's not! lol!

cute pictures!! Fun times. and CREATIVE! :) of course...