Easter was late this year, but somehow, it snuck up on me anyway. As I entered Holy Week, I hadn’t organized a single Easter craft for Annalyn, figured out what to wear on Easter Sunday, bought more than one CD for Annalyn’s Easter basket or asked my mom to bring a ham for lunch!
One thing I did have planned was a snacktivity. (Isn’t that a great word? I read it on a blog but can’t remember which one. If that’s your term, please take credit in the comments!) Jen and Amanda both wrote about making Resurrection Rolls with their kids, and I couldn’t wait to do it with Annalyn.
The basic premise is that you wrap seasoned marshmallows with a crescent roll and bake them. The marshmallow represents Jesus, the butter and seasoning represents the oil and spices used to prepare His body, and the crescent roll is the tomb. After baking, the marshmallow is supposed to melt – leaving an empty “tomb.”
[Ingredients: one can crescent rolls, eight large marshmallows, 1/4 cup melted butter, cinnamon sugar.]
I just knew that making these with Annalyn would be a magical, meaningful experience. Not quite.
As we dipped the marshmallows in butter and rolled them in cinnamon sugar (and tried to convince a certain three-year-old not to lick her fingers), I explained the significance to Annalyn. We’d been talking about Easter for a couple weeks, so she (kind of) had a basic understanding of Jesus dying and then being alive again. I was sure that this tasty illustration would bring the story to life (um, no pun intended) for her.
I’d read the warnings about sealing the crescent rolls tightly, so we did. But apparently not tight enough. Because Marshmallow Jesus did not melt!
Nope.Those big marshmallows burst out of the rolls and puffed up, big and brown. So much for our Easter lesson!
Scrambling, I came up with an alternative explanation and told Annalyn, “Just like the tomb couldn’t hold Jesus, these rolls couldn’t hold the marshmallows!”
It was not exactly magical. Or, sadly, meaningful. (But I tell you what – those rolls were tasty! As Annalyn later told my mom, “We ate Pretend God!”)
We made our rolls on Wednesday night. The next day was choir practice, and Annalyn went along for the ride. Together, we packed a bag of books and toys, and I hoped for the best. Sitting quietly for 90 minutes is not exactly a preschooler’s idea of a fun time, you know. (To be fair, trying to keep a preschooler quiet while also rehearsing for what our pastor calls “The Christian Superbowl” for 90 minutes is not my idea of a fun time.)
Something interesting happened, though. In between “Shhhh!” and “You have to go to the bathroom again? Really?” Annalyn took a break from scribbling on an old bulletin with a red pencil to ask a few questions. And being the persistent child she is, the questions didn’t stop no matter how many times I
demanded that she asked her to quiet down – or when we got in the car to drive home. We ended the slightly stressful evening sitting in the car in our driveway as she asked:
“What is a bathtism?”
“What does that mean?”
“Is Grandma Marilyn in heaven with Jesus?”
“Where IS God?”
“Why did Grandma Marilyn have to die?”
“Can we die now and go to heaven to see Jesus?”
“But I love Jesus! Where IS Jesus?”
“When is Grandma Marilyn coming alive again like Jesus?”
Her questions caught me off guard, and I can’t guarantee I answered them exactly right. (I’d like to know why Grandma Marilyn had to die, too, if you want to know the truth.) But I think the important thing is that she asked them. And I answered.
It turns out that the Easter lesson came unexpectedly that night. (A little bit like the original Easter lesson, I suppose.)
I laughed about our failed resurrection rolls, but I really was disappointed. I should’ve given God – and my sweet, inquisitive little girl – more credit. Planning activities and lessons is a vital part of teaching my daughter, and I’m not about to stop trying. But this whole situation has reminded me to leave room for the moments that come up naturally.
How did you teach your kids about Easter this year? Did you make resurrection rolls – or any other Easter snacktivities?
Affiliate links are included in this post. This post will be linked to Mouthwatering Monday, Tasty Tuesday, Tuesdays at the Table, Tempt My Tummy Tuesday, 33 Shades of Green, Foodie Friday, Friday Firsts and Food on Fridays.