Happy Easter Sunday. For many, today is one of the most important days of the year, when church services are typically well-attended and special activities are planned.
Spring finery is usually on parade, and although Easter bonnets may no longer be the height of fashion, many young ladies will model new dresses and a lot of young men will be tugging at ties and chafing at too-tight collars.
Traditionally, this is the day when it’s OK to begin wearing white shoes and clothing (the season continues until Labor Day) and when the felt of winter headgear gives way to straw.
It’s also the day when kids enjoy dashing across lawns or parks or other open spaces in search of colorful eggs and parents wait and watch, cameras in hand.
Adults often get in on the act, helping the youngest searchers find the “elusive” eggs and wondering how a child who appears to be so alert can fail to see a bright blue or pink egg resting virtually at his or her feet.
“It’s right there. Right there,” parents yell, pointing. “By the tree. On the ground. By the tree.”
This is typically one of the most glorious days of spring in areas where temperatures are already balmy. The southern landscapes are aglow with bright blooms, and flower gardens are beginning to burst forth with explosions of color.
This year, thanks to the most abundant rainfall in several years, most of Texas has been awash in spring color for some time now. Our state is home to the bluebonnet, and most families have already found that perfect patch of vivid blue in which to pose the kids for the traditional photo op.
How many Texas photo albums feature such snapshots? It would be impossible to guess. How many of us have been plopped down in patches of the state flower only to discover that there’s also an ant bed in there somewhere? Ouch.
This is also the day when most families enjoy a special meal, when even the busiest folks sit down together to break bread and enjoy dishes that, in the South, are almost as traditional as those served at Thanksgiving and Christmas.
This is a day or rebirth, of fresh starts and new beginnings. It is a day to celebrate and a day to share.
As you attend church services, sit down with your family at the dinner table, help the little ones fill their baskets with bright-colored eggs or take part in other traditional activities, remember those who are not as fortunate as you are. Think of those who have no family or lack the means to enjoy a holiday meal.
As you snap photos of the kids in the bluebonnets or pause to enjoy the view of a budding garden, remember the storm clouds that darkened our skies a few days ago. Many of your neighbors have lost a lot.
Remember them today. As we pointed out in this space Thursday, area churches, school and community organizations offer opportunities to lend a helping hand, or you can text REDCROSS to 90999 to donate $10 to the American Red Cross. They’ll put your money to work where it will do the most good.
We think that message is worth repeating on this special day. After all, being neighborly is a Texas tradition, just like bluebonnets.