Murphy Dome Diaries

A journalist observes life in the far north.

The legend of the Easter Bunny

Me and Slate, who is almost three months.


I just put Jade’s and Slate’s Easter baskets in a tote to take to the snowmachine cabin on Friday. We are honoring our family tradition and having Easter in the mountains.

I love holidays because my mom usually went all out. We didn’t have much but mom always made sure we had a special holiday. Waking up on Christmas morning or Easter was one of the best things about my childhood. I remember that happy feeling of anticipation. I want my kids to have special memories too.

But I don’t like lying about Santa and the Easter Bunny. I told Jade about the Easter Bunny the other day and I felt silly. “So, this bunny is going to come around soon to hide some eggs and a gift basket.”

A friend of mine suggested that I focus on the religious meaning of Easter but the problem is that I am not a Christian believer. I celebrate Easter out of habit. It’s part of the American culture.

I gleaned from various Web sites, including Wikipedia, that German settlers get the credit for the Easter Bunny. They call him Osterhase. They reportedly introduced this mythical character after settling in Pennsylvania Dutch country in the 18th Century. (By the way, the Dutch apparently invented Santa Claus.)

I wonder if holidays can be enjoyed by children without the sham. Would they have as much fun if they knew their moms and dads were hiding the eggs and the baskets?

Probably not. Once I knew the legends of Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny were false, the holidays lost a certain luster.

Maybe I’ll tell my children about the Easter Bunny without saying whether I believe in him.

And when they are old enough to realize that a bunny coming into the house to hide stuff is implausible, and they ask who is hiding their Easter baskets, I’ll be coy and change the subject.

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3 comments on “The legend of the Easter Bunny

  1. Midge
    April 22, 2011

    I think you hit it on the head. You remember the holidays not because of what the bunny or Santa did, but, like you wrote, because of what your MOM did. When my mom pulled the curtain on the sham, she did so in the most hilarious way; I think I was sad to find out there was not Santa or bunny, but she said she used to wear a Santa hat and a tail and ears to play the roles. For some reason, that vision of my mom looking like a more fully clothed Playboy bunny while out in the yard hiding eggs is one of my most lovable moments and memories I have of my mom. And I think your honesty is awesome.

  2. Heather
    April 25, 2011

    So makayla just figured out a little while ago that Santa and the bunny aren’t real… But she’s still just as excited to celebrate. I dodged that one for a while, but having teenagers in the house makes things more difficult. I’m also wondering how slate got to be 3 months old and I haven’t even seen him yet! I think you and al need a date night and my baby jade and slate should come over and play with remy and makayla. Next Saturday is great for me. 😉

  3. Kathy King
    April 25, 2011

    Hey now, I have been celebrating Easter with my 3 sons, all grown up now their whole lives and they still expect Easter Baskets on Easter morning and Stockings on Christmas morning. It is just fun stuff for everybody! Forever! Keep it up! Jade is too smart to think that a bunny brought that stuff anyway. XOXOXO

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This entry was posted on April 20, 2011 by .
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