Thursday, April 19, 2012

Quote of the Day

"What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make."
-- Jane Goodall

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Hail to the Easter Bunny!

Walking through the stores this week, you couldn't help but see rows upon rows of all of the pastel colored candy waiving at you from the aisles.  So this of course made me think back to my own Easter basket which was sometimes filled with such items as jelly beans, foil wrapped gold coins, and chocolate peanut butter and coconut eggs to name just a few. 

So where did the Easter Bunny come from anyway?  Of course he has nothing to do with the true meaning of Easter, but instead represents the more playful side of the Holiday.  A little research quickly revealed that the first documented origin of the Easter Bunny (a/k/a “Oschter Haws”) can be traced back to the 1500’s in Germany, although even earlier accounts mention spring festivals and the symbolism of eggs with fertility and rebirth.

Then in the 1700’s when German immigrants landed in Pennsylvania Dutch country, they brought with them their tradition, and thereafter American Folklore soon developed. Children eagerly waited for the arrival of Oschter Haws with baskets of colored eggs.  Eventually this custom developed into the swapping of the colored eggs for candy or small gifts, similar to the tradition of good old Saint Nick (gotta love my German ancestors!).

Now personally, my fondest Easter Bunny memory hands down has to be that singular solid chocolate bunny wrapped in plastic and tied with a bow, standing center stage in the middle of the basket.  This bunny was revered to such a degree that he was cushioned by a soft pillow of glossy green, yellow or pink grass and surrounded by a bounty of colorful subordinates.  The accompanying marshmallow chicks (while still good) unfortunately could not hold a candle to this confectionary delight.  And as for myself, I had an entire system down in which to savor this little fellow.  It began innocently enough with biting off the tail (a mere tease at this taste of chocolate heaven), then the ears quickly followed.  This of course would be quite enough for the first day, because after all, I couldn’t make him disappear all at once.  Gradually the nose, head, feet and body would soon follow (yes, precisely in that order).   I would relish each delicious chocolate bite to the fullest.  (In hindsight I suppose this is where my chocoholic origins came from.) 

Now I know of some friends who do not actually like chocolate (I shudder at the thought), so I wonder what their favorite treat was from the Easter Basket.  Was it the jelly beans?  The marshmallow Peeps?   Or some other equally sugary treat?  What was yours?  Did you receive a unique treat unlike anything your friends found?  My basket magically appeared in my bedroom sometime in the middle of the night.  Did yours also or did you go downstairs to find it awaiting you in the kitchen? 

So hail to the Easter Bunny for bringing smiles to children across the country, and thank you Germany for sharing your “Oschter Haws” tradition with us.

Wishing you all a safe and enjoyable Easter.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Good Morning Friends!  I just wanted to let you know that I am in the process of tweaking this blog a little, so if it looked one way yesterday and another way today, that's why.  I'm also adding new gadgets to the site and hopefully will be including pictures soon.  Today, for example, I added a gadget for SocialVibe to help support the American Red Cross (bottom right corner on this blog).  All you need to do is click on the gadget to show your support.  It's free, so why not do what we can to help disaster victims.

Additionally, I am playing around with different backgrounds to this site as well as adding a new welcome message.  And if you like what you see, and want to recommend this blog, you can now push the orange Google +1 button on the top right to recommend me on Google.

Now don't forget to scroll through the blog and keep on the lookout for new changes, and if I am lucky enough to be flagged in your favorites, please remember to refresh my page if you do not see anything new.

Thank you, and if I don't have a chance to post anything additional before the weekend, have a Happy Easter!