We were spontaneous this year and decided about 2 weeks before Easter that we'd like to get away as a family. We jumped at the chance to get away 'just the 8 of us' since all our local family members were doing their own things for Easter. Four days before Easter we found out our idea would really work and we had the opportunity to use the house of a family friends' in Williamsburg, VA which is about 2 1/2 hours from here.
Change from the norm is good. I'd even go so far as to say it's necessary at times to do something different than 'the norm' . Of course, we LOVE having family over for our traditional Easter meal and egg hunt outside! We'll go back to that next year or whenever the next time is that we'll all have Easter together. But there is something that feels right about sometimes changing things up and experiencing things differently than you're 'use to'. I feel a renewed sense of gratitude for the REAL meaning in celebrating Easter after going away and not keeping up with our usual traditions. It did our family good.
As with most trips with a large family (I'm sure) we had our 'adventures' which is one reason why you won't see a family picture or even kid picture of everyone dressed up for this years Easter morning mass. One of the kids forgot their church shoes! ACK! The options- that kid could wear jeans to mass? or that kid could swap shoes with another causing several to be 'upset'. All of this before heading to mass? The devil sure wanted us to be frazzled. And we were for a bit until it hit us...it's EASTER!!! What's the point of all this!? Why let shoes get in the way of our Easter joy. Thankfully with some heart to heart conversations we were able to press on and learn through our trial...lack of proper church shoes.
We made it to mass. The church website said mass would be at 10:30 but when we got there at 10:03 we realized mass had already started. They started early for some reason? We went in and kinda 'made a scene' (the only large family in the church, enters late and it was a small church), but we miraculously all got seats. It wasn't what we're use to for Easter Sunday, but you know...everyone their was there for a reason. We were all there because HE HAS RISEN! And even though we didn't feel 'the same' as we have in past Easter morning celebrations we were reminded that it's not all about the feelings, the smells, the sights, the sounds...it's REALLY about HIM. JESUS! HE ROSE FROM THE DEAD! And because of THAT we are able to go to HEAVEN!
We were all touched in different ways this Triduum. We headed home after having our traditional Easter dinner at the vacation house. And I'd say we left a little closer as a family, a little more peaceful as individuals and a lot more thankful for Our Lords passion, death and resurrection.
|Our kids- getting so big!|
|Ready to eat! Lamb roast, mashed potatoes, peas, rolls and 'mud pie'.|
|A serious game of chess between the bigs before heading home.|