Easter often seems like the sad, lonely cousin to Christmas. What I mean is, there’s not the same level of thought put into it; no real preparation or excitement about the big day, no decorations to put up or letters to Easter Bunny to write. Gifts default to whatever chocolate shaped eggs or rabbits are readily available.
Easter not only ends up being an over-indulgent chocolate frenzy (not to mention the packaging and wrapping that goes along with it), but it also adds up pretty quickly at the till.
This year I want to take a bit more time to get to know Easter, buy it a glass of wine and perhaps dinner if things go well. I’m talking about slowing down, spending time with my family and remembering what’s important. Oh, and enjoying a small treat here and there.
I’ve come up with seven simple alternatives to mindlessly buying a tonne of mass produced and overpriced chocolate eggs. I hope these ideas will help you (and me) save money while also having fun, slowing down and appreciating Easter.
- Print your own Easter puzzles and colouring pages
A great way to keep the kids (and yourself) entertained in the lead up to Easter. Alternatively make your own Easter activity and colouring book to give as a gift with some coloured pencils or textas in place of chocolates.
- Make your own chocolates
Buy some moulds (you may even get lucky at a second hand shop – making the whole process even more sustainable), some ethical chocolate (look for any blocks with appropriate Certified labeling) and head over to the World Vision website for a fantastic step-by-step guide on chocolate making.
- Think outside the egg
It doesn’t have to be all chocolates and sweets. Easter generally falls around the school holidays and if you don’t want kids stockpiling too much chocolate, what about a voucher to the local stationery shop to buy a new pen to go back to school with or a magazine? They will get more joy and longevity out of it than a wolfed down Easter egg.
- Easter Egg Hunt
Lindsey at Filth Wizardry has a great idea for an Easter Egg Hunt. I love a good Easter egg hunt or any kind of ‘go-and-find-it-in-the-garden type game’ and this one means the fun goes on for longer without the mad scramble for sweets with tears at the end because someone got more than the other.
- Make an Easter cake for your workplace
Rather than giving small chocolate gifts to people at work, this year I have decided to make a chocolate cake for everyone to enjoy. You can’t go wrong with a flour-less chocolate cake, they taste so good. Create a stencil by cutting the shape of an egg or a rabbit out of a piece of paper, lay this on the cake, sprinkle with icing sugar, remove the paper and hurrah! You have an Easter themed cake!
- Make hot cross buns
I have to admit I have never attempted Hot Cross Buns myself but I love the idea of making the perfect bun that people will look forward to each year. I couldn’t go past Nigella’s recipe for a Plain Hot Cross Bun but was surprised Nigella herself didn’t come up with this Chocolate Filled Hot Cross Bun. Phwooaarr..
- Easter breakfast
I am a big fan of a Turkish breakfast which in it’s most basic form consists of boiled eggs, cucumber, tomato, feta cheese, olives and some fresh crusty bread. I like to Easter it up a bit by dyeing and decorating the boiled eggs then hiding them in the garden so Miss Logical and Master Mayhem have to hunt for their breakfast. Anything to create another hide-it-in-the-garden game!
What Easter traditions do you have that won’t bust your budget?