Spring is finally here, which means the Easter Bunny can't be far behind. Get into the spirit of the holiday with colorful crafts, tasty treats, and lots of trips outside to enjoy the spring air. Cheapism rounded up some affordable ways to enjoy the annual holiday with friends and family.
A cheap and easy sugar cookie recipe serves as the base for edible activity. After chilling, roll the dough out and use themed cookie cutters or a tea cup to cut out the cookies before baking. Make green, blue, pink, and yellow frosting with food coloring. Spoon the frosting into plastic sandwich bags and cut out a corner to make frosting pens for the freshly baked cookies.
Celebrate this classic spring creature with just a few pennies' worth of paper plates and markers. Start by cutting some paper plates in half for bunny ears, along with a few strips of pink construction paper or paint for the insides of the ears. Lay out cotton balls and craft glue and have fun assembling the ears onto whole paper plates to create cute little friends that can be used as masks or hung on the wall. This hands-on craft is simple and will produce a piece of art that kids can play with long after Easter is over.
With a little paint and some craft paper, potatoes can create a kid-friendly craft project. Cut geometric designs into potatoes halves, then dip the potatoes in pastel paints mixed on paper plates. Use craft paper or old pillow cases as canvas and create colored murals with the potato stamps. Go free form or draw traditional symbols such as eggs, bunnies, and baby chicks on the canvas to paint over.
This teaches the benefits of patience and teamwork. Have a dozen eggs on hand and at least two teams. Each team member has to hold a spoon balancing an egg, walk to a cone (any object will do), circle it, and return to the starting point to pass off the egg. The next team member has to successfully get the egg on the spoon and follow the same route. The first team to have all members complete the round wins.
Break out the recipes and enjoy some time in the kitchen while passing on the joys of cooking. Traditional Easter brunch items include biscuits, roasted potatoes, quiche, and sweet pastries – and, for cooks who are feeling ambitious, a classic baked ham. The best part is sitting down and enjoying home-cooked food with the family.
With a package of food dye and a few dozen hard-boiled eggs, you can have hours of family fun for just a few dollars. Encourage the creative spirit by making this a rule-free zone: any color and any pattern goes. If the children are too young to handle food dye, use stickers and markers.
Keep the kids busy for a few hours with an Easter egg hunt. Hide slips of paper with clues leading to the other secret locations, ultimately leading to a basket of Easter eggs and candy. Have children work in teams to add a competitive edge, but make sure there are plenty of treats for everyone.
Plant a garden to celebrate the return of spring and enjoy the fruits of your labor in the months ahead. This is a great opportunity to soak up some sun while exploring the joy of gardening. Many flowers and edible plants can be started right as Easter rolls around, including cabbage, carrots, and lettuce. Herbs are an especially good choice; buy young plants at the hardware store, dig a hole in the ground, cover with fresh moist soil, water, and wait for the tasty leaves to grow.
Easter is a common theme in music from the Classical and Romantic periods. Masterpieces including Bach's "St. Matthew Passion," Mahler's "Resurrection Symphony," and Handel's "Messiah" are often performed for the holiday. Gather the family and explore the musical depths. For less intense works, look to YouTube and streaming services such as Spotify for popular song lists.
Use coloring and painting activity sheets to learn about the story of Easter. Hundreds of activity sheets are available online for free, in secular or religiously themed versions. Print out some activity sheets, get some paints and brushes together, and let the kids create their own Easter masterpieces.