Wednesday, April 1, 2015


We spent part of dinner last night telling Sweetpea about her egg-dyeing past, and saying that on her next birthday she would be turning four.  "NOOOO," she said,  "I'll be EIGHT!"
And in my dismay at that turn of events, or the calendar when Eye certainly wasn't looking, I hearken now back to her first time dyeing eggs, age 2 1/2.   

1. Buy Eggs. Buy a dye kit (or trust to the little battered McCormick box, veteran of four Easters, nine birthday cakes and that unfortunate business with the pink Margaritas).
2. Boil eggs and cool a bit.
3. Get together the dye pack, a bib, the vinyl-covered highchair, the vinegar, a paper-towel-covered tray for drying, and the camera.
4, Cover breakfast table with two black garbage bags, then a layer of paper towels.
5. Go to door to call in Child and her Ganner, to get started.
6. Notice that it’s such a nice day, it would be better for making pictures (and less messy) to do the dyeing outdoors.
7. Get Ganner started on getting out the small lunch table for the patio.
8. Pour about enough vinegar into a small bottle, to save lugging the new gallon up and out.
9. Get the big plastic KoolAid pitcher; put it in a bag with dye-pack, vinegar bottle, a black garbage bag, bib, measuring spoon, wet washcloth, and roll of paper towels.
10. Carry up the items; take them outside and set them on the table.
11. Notice and remember that the table needs a good clean-and-disinfect before using; go in and get the big spray bottle of Orange Pine Sol cleaner; clean tabletop.
12. Running Tag-Team with Ganner, who is busy amusing Child with a new watering can at the expense of her equally new shoes, come back in for high chair. Be thankful once again that it’s tiny and folds up.
13. Set up high chair beside table. Get all items out of bag. Take KoolAid pitcher back into upstairs kitchen for some hot water. Field request from Ganner to bring out the small high-chair with, "You mean THIS one?" Suppress urge to be surly.
14. Hurt finger trying to open dye pack.
15. Ditto, separating the pretty-but-obtuse little plastic tubs. Pour warm water into tubs.
16. Watch it cool while Ganner runs into the house to charge the camera battery. "It'll only take a minute."
17. Watch child slurp all the warm water from the pink tub, one spoon at a time, with the measuring spoon.
18. Drag up a lawn chair and wait.
19. Retrieve and re-fill spilled green tub, which was next on the sip-list.
20. Notice that the little envelope of fizz-tabs seems to have disappeared.
21. Hunt back through all items, including turning sack inside out and looking inside washcloth.
22. Find dye-pack on the ground, stepped-on and smushed into the mud.
23. Turn on hose and wash pack, hoping it’s waterproof.
24. Decide to go ahead and measure vinegar into tubs.
25. Fill four, then relinquish fifth undone, because Child is apparently still thirsty.
26. Go ahead and put fizz tabs into four, making surprisingly nice colors for a kit.
27. Remain happily innocent of how strong those colors ARE.
28. Put one egg in the dye in green tub, just to let Child try it out.
29. Child reaches for egg, dyeing all her fingers.
30. Handwipe and offer the wire apparatus, which is wielded enthusiastically, including an overhand swing of the egg-laden little catapult that woulda done King David proud.
31. Ganner emerges from house, snapping like the Grand-Paparazzi he is.
32. Notice that one of the tabs has not fizzed. Poke it with the measuring spoon and watch as it falls into tiny crumbs. Go into house for trusty old McCormick pink.
33. Get back outside in time to find Child cracking egg on table, then pinching off great shards of the shell. Ganner says it’s OK---he’ll eat it.
34. Child dyes five eggs, which go onto the tray for drying. Child retrieves all five and plonks them into tubs---with the uncanny knack of returning not a one to its original tub.
35. Remove pink egg from green tub; remark that you WONDERED how camo was made.
36. Observe that all five eggs have taken on a decidedly brownish cast, with a few branching over into brindle.
37. Put five more eggs into tubs. Joog them up and down a bit. Remove the most beautiful blue egg in all the history of Paas.
38. See the already-done eggs plonked on top of the eggs in the tubs.
39. Remove what you can, placate wailing child, offer more fresh white eggs into tubs.
40. Run around table and deftly catch egg wobbling for the edge.
41. Get all the khaki/camo eggs onto the tray, with the three once-dyed ones. Notice that Glum Green is this year’s new Pink.
42. Dump dye into the Weatherbush; gather up all items and cram back into sack. Vainly scrub Child’s hands and the splashes on her legs. Remember too late that she's going to dinner with her other Grandparents this evening.
43. Get out her new plastic bathtub, set it on the patio; run into house for a towel, a bathcloth with a little squirt of lavender bubble-bath in it, and a fresh Pull-up.
44. Bring KoolAid pitcher back into up kitchen for hot water; use hose to make water perfect temperature.
45. Let Child play with pouring bubbles back and forth with new watering can until water cools.
46. Scrub most of the residual dye from her hands and legs; bathe her.
47. Wrap her sudsy body in a big towel, bring her indoors, get her dressed for a nap and settle her in her room with three books, a stuffed bear, a Spring breeze through the windows, and the music of all five windchimes.
48. Bring in all the stuff in the yard; empty and wash tub; set in sun to dry.
49. Gently decline offer to sit and look at the 940 pictures Ganner made of the process.
50. Rejoice in the company I keep, and wish I'd been able to find those bunny ears worn by every child dyeing eggs since 1999...


Latane Barton said...

Oh my gosh, what precious memories.. a bit hectic at times but precious nonetheless.

GSL said...

Love that little green mit!!! I'd love to make Easter eggs with Ganner!!!

Jane and Lance Hattatt said...

Darling Rachel,

Believe us when we say that this is not only the preoccupation of small children.

Every year at Easter Tímea, our housekeeper, goes through the same procedures and we try to show appreciation of eating hard boiled eggs with blue, red and green tinges! Thankfully, our kitchen shows no signs of the egg dyeing activity and Tímea wears rubber gloves!

Wishing you and your family all joy this Eastertide!

Debbie@Debbie-Dabble and A Debbie-Dabble Christmas said...

Great memories!!
I remember dying eggs with my sons and having an Easter Egg hunt every year!!
Those days are long gone but I am left with wonderful memories!
Now my sons look forward to coming back home for Easter dinner and I am thrilled that they still want to come back home!!
Wishing you a very Happy Easter!!
Thanks so much for visiting!!


harleygirl said...

ha, ha, my little guy is going on three, and this was his first year. I laughed as he kept sticking his fingers into the color, too, but he didn't stick his WHOLE hand in. :) That's really funny. :) I tried to keep him mostly using yellow and orange...they don't shine quite as brightly on skin. :) When we were finished, he cried, but then was appeased at carrying his eggs around the house for a while. I'll be putting my pix up soon. Happy Easter to you and your family. :)

Patsy said...

What fun ,I miss all that time with grand's. Now that my girls are grandmothers they get to have all the fun.

Jeanne said...

Dearest Rachel, I am elated and happy because our internet has been down all day and just came up. I finally have a day to play on my computer all day, catch up with my sweet blogging friends and totally enjoy a day of rest. I did rest. LOL.

Your chronological report on your egg dye experience with your 2 1/2 year old sweetie is adorable and exhausting. How did it go this year? The photo with the tiny camo hand made me laugh. I really miss dying eggs with our grands so much. Alas, they are all grown up now.

This year we are eating out for Easter with friends. A break from cooking will be nice. When my cousin was here I cooked non stop. He was a willing helper though.

I loved your email so much my sweet friend. I have missed you. I am back for awhile I hope.

Wishing you a wonderful Easter with your loved ones all around.

Love, Jeanne

Kelley said...

Oh! My! Word! This is too precious! I love x 18 memories like these!

Your writing style reminds me of Susan Branch and Nana Diana (Takes a Break)! Your newest faithful follower!


P.S. Thank you SEW much for dropping by on Kelley Highway!

Kim S. said...

Hilarious. This will be a wonderful thing to read to Sweetpea when she is doing her own running back and forth and up and down. (And doesn’t your typing finger itch to leave that ‘e’ out of ‘dyeing’ because it feels wrong, but isn’t?) And didn’t those wire things used to hold the eggs much more securely? I can remember being able to fold them and hang an egg over the edge of a coffee cup long enough to do a half and half! That green hand? A treasured-forever picture.

Cape Coop said...

That portrait, two hands, one, the tiniest green kitten paw ever seen, the other, adult, soft, gentle yet strong, full of every ability to protect and comfort the smaller one. This is my favorite photo that you've ever posted.(PS:months in hospital and without internet, I'm home and back online today, woohoo! Love and miss you! Rebecca)