Easter snuck up on me this year. Well, kind of. Actually, I felt like it was over before it had arrived. Shall I explain?
A few weeks ago the husband and I were headed out for a hike. We were talking about what weekend events/obligations we had in March and the something clicked and we realized that we were scheduled to be out of town on Easter morning. Honestly, I think that part of the reason we lost track of Easter (besides the fact that it’s a moving target, never on the same date from year-to-year) is because we don’t currently have a home church. In the past, the church bulletin helped keep us on track.
Where were we on Easter? In Seattle. You see, one of the husband’s co-workers got married on Easter eve. After RSVP’ing we decided to make a weekend of it and arranged for a room. Little did we know…
Jump ahead to the morning we figured out when Easter was…..
We agreed that we would not change our plans. However, we also agreed that if we weren’t going to church on Easter morning (I know, we could have found a church in Seattle, but that sounded like a lot of work) we didn’t want to go to a Good Friday service because…how depressing would that be? Good Friday with no celebratory Easter Sunday? Serious bummer.
However, much of what I love about Easter are the bunny-related traditions: the big ham dinner, Easter eggs, candy (Easter candy is, in my opinion, the best candy out of all holiday candies). Plus, I’ve accumulated a number of cute Easter platters and I have bunny napkin holders and…you get the idea. So, when my parents came up a few weekends ago we celebrated early-Easter with the other family members in the area. We had ham and smoked turkey. Green salad and cheesy potatoes. Rolls and pickled eggs. Lavender shortbread with lemon curd and coconut cheesecake. Sparkly wine and non-sparkly wine. And lots of laughter, with ten of us surrounding our dining room table. Thus, the feeling that Easter happened a few weeks ago.
But, I still felt compelled to mark Easter in some way. Right? I didn’t just want the day to pass us by without doing something Easter-y. But, what?
Easter is easily associated with spring, which I immediately associate with flowers. What’s nicer than spring flowers? Ummmm…Cadbury mini eggs??
Actually, if you were to say to me, “For the rest of your life you have to choose between tulips or Cadbury mini eggs. That which you do not choose will be banished from your world,” I think I’d cry. I think I might feel a tear welling up just thinking about it. Wait…maybe that’s just allergies.
Last year we visited the Rhododendron Species Botanical Garden in Federal Way to see the blue poppies (I kid you not, they’re blue. Check them out here). I thought it might be a nice place to visit again and it felt like a nice place to spend a little time on Easter Sunday. We were not disappointed. Because, if you’ve not already figured it out, I’m a sucker for flowers.
Actually, slight digression here: once upon a time I lived in Bellingham, WA. What lies to the south of B’ham? Mount Vernon (it’s a town, not a mountain). What blooms in the Mount Vernon area every single year? Daffodils. And tulips. Fields and fields and fields of them. The Skagit Valley Tulip Festival website brags that each year more than 1 million visitors descend upon the area like a swarm of locusts. Okay, the site doesn’t say locusts, that’s my own interpretation. Needless to say, each spring this sleepy little farming community is packed with people rubbernecking to see the flowers whilst the farmers valiantly attempt to go about their business. It can be a bit of a nightmare.
So, I made it a practice to go down during the week. Usually a weekday morning. I would go early in the season to see the daffodils (because, for some reason, no one went out to see the daffodils, which makes no sense because they’re such friendly looking flowers) and then later to see the tulips. I haven’t been up there in years. I should remedy that sometime. On a weekday morning.
We started our Easter with brunch in Seattle. Now, we originally had aspirations of doing an Easter brunch buffet. Problem is, it turns out everybody and their brother goes out for Easter brunch buffet and we were late to the game and couldn’t get a reservation at the places that looked good. Plus, I was feeling a bit hesitant to drop $60 bucks a piece (seemed this was about the average in Seattle) for an Easter buffet. There is no way I can eat $60 worth of food (not for lack of desire). So, the only way I would ever feel like I could get my money’s worth out of a buffet is if I could take a to-go box…or three…home with me.
When we struck out there I suggested going to Tom Douglas’ Dahlia. I’ve talked about Tom before. I’ve dreamed about his food enough to fancy us friends. In fact, I invited him to dinner. Sigh. He didn’t respond. I enticed the husband with stories about their homemade biscuits, house made sausage and their scrumptious garlic home-fry meets heaven potatoes. It did not disappoint. It never does.
Anyways, back to the Rhododendron Species Botanical Garden. We were a bit concerned about the rain in Seattle, which turned to torrential rain and hail as we proceeded south. However, right before the exit to Federal Way the skies brightened and the ground dried. We had sunshine the entire time we were in the garden. How’s that for God smiling down on us on Easter Sunday? It was beautiful and there was quite a bit in bloom. And, that which was not blooming was unfurling in the loveliest of ways: hosta emerging from the ground, ferns with their tightly wound fiddleheads reaching for the light, short, spiky grasses of all types. Spring was clamoring!
So, while it was an unexpected Easter it was a good one. Oh, and I did get Easter flowers because Dahlia is a 5 minute walk from Pike’s Place Market. Far be it from me to deny myself tulips on Easter.