This piece is in the March 2013 edition of Monroe County Parent:

By Paula Wethington

Do you have several grandchildren whom you would like to bless with Easter candy baskets?

You’ll be interested in how my Grandma Lee handled that situation during the late 1970s and early 1980s when she had to make plans for 10 grandchildren visiting during the holiday weekend.

I think she launched this idea out of practicality’s sake rather than as a way to deal with the cost of candy. But it certainly is a budget-friendly example that anyone who has a lot of grandchildren, nieces or nephews could adopt.

My grandma started with a paper bowl, the kind you might buy to serve ice cream for a birthday party. Each bowl got a handful of plastic grass; one colored boiled egg, one marshmallow Peep; four or five small chocolate eggs; and some jellybeans. She slid the bowl into a gallon-sized zippy bag to keep everything from falling out.

Each of us children received our treat bowl when we arrived at her house.

The detail I want you to remember is the limited quantity of treats that paper ice cream bowls can hold. This helps limit the cost for individual gifts, and also the amount of candy you’d need overall. Any leftover candies after my grandma filled the paper bowls went into a large serving bowl for the adults to share.

Perhaps today’s grandparents would like to use gift bags, and that’s a good option. But those of us who were children many years ago immediately understood that the paper bowl was supposed to be a basket!

Several years after my grandmother died, I decided to show my then-high school daughter what the older generation remembered. I bought the usual treats and supplies, and my daughter and I assembled a couple dozen little baskets on the kitchen table. Some of the baskets were delivered to my siblings and their children in person, but there were others that I had to ship in the mail.

Because of shipping logistics, I placed peanut butter candy eggs in the paper bowls in lieu of hardboiled eggs.

But the older relatives immediately made the connection to holiday treats from their childhood and told the next generation of children about Grandma Lee’s Easter tradition.

 

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