Did you know that decorated eggs predates Easter? The Ancient Persians painted eggs to celebrate Nowruz, their New Year celebration which begins on the first day of spring. The egg represented the rebirth of nature, i.e. fertility, a common cause for celebration in pagan cultures. Later the custom was adopted by Christians to celebrate Easter and the eggs came to represent the rebirth of man. For more on Nowruz, go to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nowrooz.
As a child I remember my mom cooking hard-boiled eggs, then the two of us would color them. I was a de-facto only child, so Mom and I did a lot of things together. I do have an older brother, but we grew up separately. (My dad had two marriages and two only children.) One Easter my folks and I visited my brother and decorated eggs with his two chilren. My niece was pretty young at the time, perhaps 5 or 6, and in her enthusiasm to do th job, managed to crack every egg she picked up. On Sunday morning, we had the obligatory Easter egg hunt, then we had to leave to head back home. But we were delayed when my niece decided it was her turn to hide the eggs and let the adults hunt for them. Of course we found it impossible to say no. :)
I was in K-Mart this morning and I saw a lot of commercial Easter baskets available for sale. Maybe it's just me, but that seems to take the fun out of it. If I had kids or grandkids, I hope I'd still make the baskets myself. Finding things to put in them and putting the baskets together is part of the fun.
Do you still have Easter baskets at your house?