This post by Gayle M. Irwin
During the next few days, several special happenings occur, especially for those of the Christian faith. Today is Maundy Thursday, observance of the last Passover meal Jesus shared with his disciples. Tomorrow is Good Friday. Then comes Easter Sunday, which occurs this Sunday, April 16. Each day has its significance and usually traditions. For example, tonight many churches host a special service to commemorate Christ’s last supper with his disciples and so various congregations will “break the bread and drink the wine” in remembrance of that meal. On Friday, services are more solemn with respect to and in gratitude for Christ’s suffering and death on the cross. Then, on Sunday, a joyous service celebrates Jesus’ resurrection and the awesome life after death people can experience because of his atonement and power. Many Christian congregations sing “Christ the Lord is Risen Today,” written during the 1700s by Charles Wesley, founder of the Methodist Church.
Here’s a YouTube video of a contemporary version of the song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XQDTZcJ_ntA
For a vast majority of people, Easter and spring mean bunny rabbits, colored eggs, new, colorful clothes, and a large meal. Whether Christian or not, this time of year is filled with traditions!
Here in the United States another tradition rolls around during spring, and it looms before us, arriving this year on Tuesday, April 18: income tax day (by the way, not a day I generally sing about!). A tradition in my household is to wait until the last minute to complete and send in the tax forms and what needs to be paid, that way my husband and I keep our money as long as possible (and we usually owe due to our respective businesses – a small business owner gets zapped by taxes, especially it seems, sole proprietorships like ours). So, guess what I’m doing this weekend?!
Other spring traditions include planting flowers and gardens, thorough house cleanings, and yard cleanups. Especially where I live, come April, we’re sick and tired of snow and cold and just want to spend time outside (maybe one reason I’m not so much into spring indoor housecleaning – I want to spend time outside!)
Which brings me to another springtime tradition in my neck of the woods: “opening up the cabin.” This is especially true for those who have water and electricity and may have shuttered windows for the winter; they go and hoist open the shutters, turn up the heat, and turn on the water. Greg and I don’t have to “open” our cabin – with no water or power to turn on/up and no buttoned-down windows, we simply “go.” April isn’t usually the month we can drive in (or even walk in) to our little cabin in the big woods – we usually still must ski/snowshoe in. And, with a dumping of snow just last week, it will likely be late May, perhaps even early June before we can drive into our forest haven. One year, we could drive all the way to the cabin in early May; that was also the year of a major fire around our place, so we’d rather still walk in, even with hills of snow hanging around, than to go through a scary summer fire season like that again.
But, I do love the tradition of first spring day at the cabin, and I look forward to this year’s “first walk-in” time! My little woodland sanctuary provides respite from the world around me, and rejuvenates my creativity. I wonder what ideas will sprout into stories at the cabin this year? I anticipate creative discoveries and inspired writings!
What are some of your spring traditions? What is it about spring that you most enjoy?
Happy Spring and Happy Easter!
Gayle M. Irwin writes inspirational pet stories for children and adults. She is also a contributing writer to several Chicken Soup for the Soul books and writes articles for various magazines and newspapers. She is currently working on new books about pet rescue for both kids and adults. Learn more at www.gaylemirwin.com.