Lately I have discovered that life as the mother of a burgeoning adult about to graduate from high school and head off to college is busy. It involves college visits and research into housing options and fraternity opportunities. It requires increased organization and skillful prodding as the end looms ever closer and senior-itis casts long shadows over deadlines that threaten derailment of plans if allowed to pass by unanswered. There’s also the financial planning and the dogged encouragement to apply for just one more scholarship and the editing of essays penned by a person with little interest in revising yet one more time.
At our house it also includes long hours and dedication to a robotics team that will soon travel to compete for the second year in a row on the world stage, and the fundraising efforts that allow said team to take advantage of such an honor.
There are smaller senior trips as well and an upcoming last high school prom to prepare for. Graduation announcements need sending and a party needs planning and there’s family summer that needs scheduling around a new set of obstacles. And then there are all of the Easter eggs that need to be stuffed with treats.
This last one I thought was behind me as my children are both teenagers now and are not generally all that concerned about the Easter bunny. Alas, being the mother of a senior and also apparently somewhat of a sucker, I have found myself volunteering on the parent committee to throw a Grad Night celebration for the graduates.
In case you’re unfamiliar with Grad Night, it’s an over-the-top fun, all-night, drug and alcohol-free lock-in event designed to help burgeoning adults with not-yet-fully-developed brains celebrate and also avoid making stupid decisions that may get them hurt or worse on the night of graduation. Similar events are held all across the United States, including several very large ones at the Disney parks in both Florida and California.
Ours is not taking place at Disney World, but it will be fun. And it does take a lot of planning and an enormous fundraising effort to make it happen, which is why I find myself among a small group of moms, who are also suckers, busily stuffing thousands of candy-filled plastic Easter eggs.
Because Easter eggs are a big deal.
People have been decorating eggs for millennia, predating Christ by a long shot, but the tradition of hunting for decorated eggs as part of an Easter celebration is generally traced to 16th century Germany, and possibly even to Martin Luther. Maybe. It does at least seem that eggs became a celebratory Easter treat largely because they were forbidden during Lent, and that Easter egg hunts, then, as now, were fun.
The tradition spread to England via the German-born mother of Queen Victoria who later continued egg hunts with her own children. In the United States, too, it was German immigrants who brought with them the egg hunt, which quickly spread across the young nation where eventually people figured out that eggs, while enjoyable to eat, are just eggs, but that hollow plastic eggs can contain candy, which is even more fun.
And then the idea for the Egg My Yard fundraiser was born. It’s turned out to be a really popular idea that finds me spending a lot of time mindlessly stuffing eggs so that my senior and I can don bunny ears and join with lots of other bunnies this Saturday to provide a fun Easter surprise for hundreds of families throughout our school district and surrounding area.
It should be a great event. Grad night will be, too, and so will prom, and the robotics world championship, and the upcoming craft fair and two trivia night fundraisers that still stand between me and the end of the school year.
It’s a lot. But with the end of the year rapidly approaching, and the day looming when my burgeoning adult son will become a recent high school graduate moving into student housing and onto bigger and better things, I find I don’t really mind keeping busy.