Monday, April 13, 2009

Easter and (more) dogsledding

We did color eggs for easter, but the thing the kids liked the most was finding the nests and looking for eggs during the easter egg hunt.

We colored eggs using both store-bought colors, and the onion-skin brew like last year using a leaf of cilantro or italian parsley from the fridge for the shape. All of that was the previous weekend...

As for this weekend, we had a wonderful easter. The "easter bunny" hid during the night the nests that the girls made for him the evening before, first filling them with easter eggs and goodies. The girls then looked for the nests when we got up. Sonja found both hers and Emilie's. The strawberries in the nests were a big hit. The chocolate bunny was a hit with Emilie, who attacked it immediately.

After a breakfast at LuLu's we went to look for the eggs that the bunny hid along the trails that we had stomped into the snow over the past several weeks. That was a huge success also with both kids. The plastic eggs were filled with grapes, or yogurt-covered-raisins, or candy, or m-n-ms. (Sonja still doesn't like chocolate, so the easter bunny tried to find some things that she might like.)

May be in a few years I might find something that will work instead of the willow branches used in the czech republic to create pomlazka (or easter whips). Sounds rough, but is not meant to be (much) - in fact it is supposed to transfer youth to the person receiving the symbolic whipping. The branches are braided together, then decorated with ribbons. Here is a description in english. As another aside, the czech name for easter is Velikonoce, which sounds a bit like "Velike Noce" = "big nights" in direct translation. I was wondering why the name, since the nights are getting shorter in spring - why would people call some holiday "big night". But based on this, it might have been a "big" holiday that got the suffix from christmas (=Vanoce), which itself comes from the german word for Christmas. So may be it is not a "big night", just a "big"+suffix holiday.

The rest of the day was wonderful too. After nap, we went to the Tanana (River) again to go ski/sled. As before, Cooper pulled Sonja, Martin had Saphira (not that she pulled much - she was way too hot), and I pulled Emilie. We went may be a mile downriver, then I let Emilie run around. She thought may be she will cross to the other shore of the river:

When Sonja and Martin came back half hour later, Emilie jumped (ok, crawled) onto Sonja's sled, and Cooper pulled them both back to the 'campground' where the car was parked. First, a family portrait - Emilie on the sled, Sonja behind the handlebar, and the parents next to the kids.

Another portrait:

Then it was time to go home. Here is a special picture for my mom: transporting the sled and Emilie:

Martin was sooooo proud of himself and his kids during bath time, when he asked them to show big 'putti' (sp?):

And, lastly, at night, we actually saw an aurora briefly - it has been a quiet winter aurora wise, both because I go to bed earlier than before, because we don't have an outhouse (so I am not likely to be outside late at night), and because there just has not been much aurora out there.

OK, one long writeup, but I thought it was just such a wonderful day! Hope everyone (that's you, Matt, and you, Cecile - my only readers :) had a nice easter!


Hilary said...

Looks like you had a fantastic Easter! Amazing that you are still skiing on the river. Here is it finally warm and sunny and people (not me!) are swimming in the lake.

Cecile said...

We are not the only readers, but we are the only ones that leave notes.
I love to read your blog because it makes me dream !
We had a fun Easter egg hunt.

Matt Heavner said...

Yeah--you've got lots of readers lurking out there, I'm sure! Great photos. We are jealous of the great mushing conditions!

padjsd said...

I'm a reader. Your photos are great, your kids are cute - what more could I ask for? Oh, a trip to Fairbanks...yea, yea.

Ben said...

Gretchen and I read it too (it's Matt's fault, though)!