Our long winter has turned into almost-summer. Now we are opening most of our windows, keeping just a few shades drawn, and living outside as we can. Marija asks to go outside all the time and often gets upset if I tell her to stay in.
But she came in to dye Easter eggs today, lured in by the other kids who came to dye with us. I enjoy teaching people how to dye the Latvian way, with onion skins, like my family always did growing up.
Here we are assembling our ingredients... we have an egg, some leaves and flowers from the yard, onion skins, and water for dipping.
We wet the leaves and flowers to help them stick to the egg. This was the only part Marija wanted to help with.
Actually, she just wanted to put one clover into the water, and then onto the egg, then back in the water, then onto the egg again...
Once she got bored of that and ran off to play with the kids, I stuck some more greens on.
The greenery leaves white spots on the egg, and the onion skins leave a brown pattern.
So we surround the eggs, then fold the cloth and wrap it all up...
The thread keeps everything together, and the initials (made with a permanent marker) let us keep track of who made which eggs.
We added leftover onion skins to a couple pots of water, heated the water to boiling and then added the eggs. After about 10 minutes, I turned the stove off and let the eggs sit in the brown water.
About 20 minutes after that, the eggs were ready. We ran them under cold water to cool them and then unwrapped...
The big one is a goose egg we got from a friend!
If you like videos, here is one with a little more information about the tradition.
Today was so nice, I saw neighbors doing all kinds of things outside: eating, sorting clothes, carving a deer out of wood. (Okay, Joe was the one with the deer, finishing his carving.)
But in the morning, before the kids on spring break started waking up and spilling out of their houses, it felt like Marija and I had the neighborhood all to ourselves, for playing in.
May your Easter be blessed by our loving, giving Lord of all.