Slice of Life March Challenge #31: A slice about Easters past and present – inspired by Cynthia Rylant


The March Slice of Life Challenge is hosted by Stacey and Ruth at Two Writing Teachers

Preparing for Easter Sunday, this book was very much on my mind.  For this Easter Sunday was so very different from Easters in the past.  Our son Ben is out in San Francisco – this will be yet another Easter without him home; or daughter Elizabeth is home from graduate studies in London, but has been in New York all week meeting with her  professors and advisers at Columbia University and will only be home for the day.  And Olivia, our youngest, is home – but this will be the last Easter for a few years – this Fall, she is off to college.   The house is very still and quiet. So, the refrain of Rylant’s  book is very much with me:


“When I was young in the mountains, we sat on the porch swing in the evenings, and Grandfather sharpened my pencils with his pocketknife.  Grandmother sometimes shelled beans and sometimes braided my hair.  The dogs lay around us, and the stars sparkled in the sky.  A bobwhite whistled in the forest.  Bob-bob-bobwhite!   

When I was young in the mountains, I never wanted to go to the ocean, I never wanted to go to the desert.  I never wanted to go anywhere else in the world, for I was in the mountains.  And that was always enough.” 

…and inspired this writing exercise, with my three kiddos (now no longer kiddos) in mind:

When you were all young in our home, Easter Sunday mornings were full of excitement – who would find the chocolate eggs tucked away here and there, some in plain view and some just peeking out?  There was laughter and glee and chasing and counting.  And chocolate before breakfast.
When you were all young in our home, Easter Sunday mornings were about getting to church on time – about finding choir robes and headbands and the big hunt for our Sunday buckle and lace shoes.
When you were all young in our home, Easter Sunday mornings found you in the choir loft in your robes  of blue, and green, and red.  I would listen for just your voices, and we’d smile across the pews at end of each hymn.
When you were all young in our home, Easter Sunday mornings were busy and happy and noisy.  I never wanted to go to the ocean, I never wanted to go to the desert.  I never wanted to go anywhere else in the world, for I was with all of you.  And that was always enough.

To our March Slicing community – thank you… I hope to see you on Tuesdays!
And to Stacey and Ruth…thank you again!

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9 thoughts on “Slice of Life March Challenge #31: A slice about Easters past and present – inspired by Cynthia Rylant

  1. What a beautiful way to remember the specialness of this day with your children. Thank you Tara for being a writer and reader. I appreciate your comments.

  2. My mom read that book to me all the time when I was younger and it was my first grade teacher's favorite, so I can definitely say I'm familiar with it. Also, Columbia at this point in my college process is my dream school so seeing that your daughter goes there caught me by surprise! Thank you for being such a faithful commenter to me!

  3. Tara, this is beautiful! And I loved seeing the picture of your gorgeous kids. Neither of my boys is home this year, and the house is way, way, way too quiet! Happy Easter!

  4. Tara, I was at my daughters this morning for brunch, & had a lovely time. But on the way home I remembered all the times at my own grandparents with aunts and uncles and cousins galore. We had such fun. This is beautifully done, and while I have used Rylant's book for other things, I wonder if just this might not be a wonderful piece as a mentor text. I 'hear' your nostalgic look back, and send a hug! See in a bunch of places!

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