Chatty is blessed with a wonderful extended family here in Arizona.
Not only does The Wiz have his son, daughter-in-law, two grandsons, his ex-brother-in-law and the most wonderful ex-wife on the planet (all of whom have been kind enough to offer friendship and love to Chatty) living in Mesa, but Chatty also has a cousin (not really a “close” cousin from a genealogical standpoint – Chatty’s aunt by marriage and her mother were sisters) who is ALSO willing to consider Chatty and The Wiz family!
This cousin, with her husband of 51 years, have seven children and 17 grandchildren – ALL of whom live within 15 miles of “home base” (except for one grand-daughter who is in college in Missouri but comes home every chance she gets). And home base – her cousin’s house – is 2 miles from Chatty.
Are you getting the “blessed” part here???
All of these people know how to have a good time, and parties on special occasions such as Easter abound! Chatty will be getting around to that eventually…
Chatty has gotten to know a couple of her cousin’s children fairly well over the past couple of years – they are all close to Chatty age-wise – and one of them (let’s call her “Carolyn”) has a particularly wicked sense of humor, which Chatty just loves. Carolyn is also the best hair stylist Chatty has ever met – she’s the only person who has ever been able to do anything with Chatty’s pathetic hair.
ANYWAY (you might want to go get something refreshing to drink right about now, because this story gets even longer), with the annual Easter Egg Hunt at Chatty’s cousin’s house coming up, one of the grand-children mentioned it to Aunt Carolyn, because even though she is 17 now, the Easter Egg Hunt is a BIG deal. Aunt Carolyn, in her usual off-hand manner, informed her niece that THIS year, the Easter Egg Hunt was only for the “little kids”, because Grandma and Grandpa had, after all, given all the “big kids” a wonderful dress-up dinner party at Christmas, to which none of the little kids had been invited. To even things up, this year, the Easter Egg Hunt would be only for the small fry.
Aunt Carolyn was teasing, of course, but the 17-year-old didn’t know that (though why she didn’t catch on immediately is a mystery – it seems Aunt Carolyn has a great poker face…) and was crushed. Apparently, mad text-messaging between the older grand-children resulted.
The upshot was that Grandma got some frantic calls from the older kids, begging her not to exclude them.
Grandma was confused, to say the least, until she heard the whole story and traced it back to Carolyn. All then became clear. She and Carolyn are still hooting. The apple doesn’t really fall far from the tree…
Chatty was fascinated to learn how an Easter Egg Hunt could be held for 17 kids ranging in age from 9-21, without fisticuffs and tears being involved.
The answer is SHEER GENIUS, and Chatty wants to pass it on to those readers lucky enough to be planning Easter Egg Hunts themselves. It is probably too late to implement the plan this year, but next year…you’ll be thanking Chatty’s cousin!
Everyone gathers at the grandparents’ home after church on Easter Sunday. Before Easter dinner, each “hunter” is presented with an Easter basket in which there is 1 special egg. Each egg in each basket is a different pattern. 11 more eggs of the same pattern(s) are hidden around the premises. Multiply the different-patterned eggs by the number of hunters, and Bob’s your uncle. The hunters look ONLY for their own eggs. Once each hunter has collected all of his or her eggs, their hunt is over, and they retire from the field. Ergo, no fighting over eggs!
Age doesn’t matter, speed doesn’t matter – nothing matters but finding all your “special” eggs.
Of course, with 17 hunters, sorting and filling 17 dozen eggs of different patterns with candy, etc. provides a challenge to Grandma, and Grandpa and a few volunteer children spend a lot of time hiding them all, but it’s worth it!
To give you an idea of the scope, here are some pictures of this year’s hunt in its planning stages:
Each year, after the hunt, all the eggs are washed, dried, bagged according to color and pattern, and then stored so they are ready to go for the next year.
Chatty told you it was sheer genius!
Oh, by the way – there IS a cut-off point. If you are carrying a beer or a glass of wine in one hand and your Easter basket in the other while you run around looking for your eggs – it may be your last hunt! But until then…who wants some eggs?
A Happy and blessed Easter to you all!