Easter Break

Another holiday. Another time to remember funny little things about Max, while watching Hannah and Nicky display some of those missing actions without even knowing it.

We were truly blessed this year to have Donna Ludwinski stay with us over the weekend. Donna's son, Erik, just passed away two months ago (NB) and their grace in handling his death is beyond inspiring. Donna was great therapy for us both, but I think even more so for Andy. I can't explain her to you. You have to read her blog about Erik's journey - about their family's journey - to even come close to seeing into her. Their spirituality, their belief in Jesus and eternal life, gives me such peace.
Donna flew out from upper Minnesota for Sam Hutchison's All-Star Party... perhaps better explained as Sam's Celebration of Life - Sam's battle ended four weeks ago. The Hutchison's and their friends and family did Sam right with an all-sports theme party. He was certainly smiling down from heaven with Erik and Max holding his hands.
Easter arrived and was happy and multi-colored for all of us. I mean, what's more Easter than fluffy blue bunny ears? The kids had a great time coloring their eggs as usual, although we were missing Mr. Blackfinger (Max). Somehow, he always colored his eggs with his hands - no spoons please - and his fingers would be blue-black for days. Nicky had a little of it going on but he freaked out and wanted no more of it!

Hannah has always used the proper technique of dipping using the little metal bendy thing that is always included in the Paas box. She was quite creative and patient this year and ended up with some splendid eggs.

The Easter Bunny naturally had the eggs hidden throughout the house when the kids came downstairs Sunday morning. This particular orange egg stayed well hidden right on top of Max. Nic finally spotted it.

Donna joined us in church Sunday morning and then we put her to work hiding plastic eggs with Andy at our bluff park. I think we had over 100 eggs for only two kids! It took longer to hide them than to find them. This is Donna and me at Powerhouse Park. (She's the one in the Minnesota sweatshirt.)Our Max sighting for the day was this red tailed hawk swooping past the bluff park carrying a bunny away for Easter dinner, presumably. In our Lion King mentality we thought this was Max's very funny way of saying "hi!" on Easter. He loved raptors, so this was perfect. In real life it looked like the bunny was hang gliding... well, kinda.

The kids had the week off so I took them up to Uncle Kevin's and Aunt Reba's house in Santa Cruz. (Andy had to work unfortunately, but I think he probably enjoyed Bache-ing it for a few days!)
Day one Rebecca and I took the kids to the Santa Cruz Boardwalk. Hannah's definitely our rollercoaster girl. She loves the crazy rides and doesn't care one bit about going in line by herself. She is SO easy! This is her in seat 10 on the big swing.

This cute little blonde kid with Hannah and Nic is cousin Kanan, my brother's grandson. Kanan is six month older than Nic, who in turn in six months older than cousin Katie. At some point in the family's future this will be great when we all get together. It's good to have cousin's your own age!
Hannah took Kanan on the kiddie coaster. They went around two times like that. So cute. It looked like so much fun, that timid Nic decided he was game for the ride. We went on and it was a small disaster. Nuf said...
Not to say that Nicky didn't enjoy some of the offerings! He's simply not Hannah.

Day two of the trip my brother and I took the kids to the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Wowsers. Our Birch aquarium is tiny! Hannah could've spent 12 hours in there exploring and examining everything. Me too. It is amazing.

On our last full day we headed north up Hwy 1 to check out the rugged coastline. So beautiful. We even saw otters in the waves! It was a very fun trip and one I thoroughly enjoyed with the kids. It's good to Live Life to the Max and I think we got that in this past week.


Donna Ludwinski said...

OH SO BEAUTIFUL. I love your family. You do live life to the MAX and I know he approves. I can't say how much your kindness meant to me. Thank you for allowing me a glimpse into your beautiful family. And I can't tell you how much I enjoy the vicarious travels through your wonderful photos and descriptions...keep it up Melis!

Bree said...

Good for you guys! What fun! I miss your sweet boy but I am reminded to live life to the MAX! That sweet smile is forever imprinted in my mind...melts my heart.

Leigh said...


It sounds like you had a wonderful Easter break. I saw the Facebook posting/picture from Andy of the orange egg, and wanted to tell you guys that we had seven orange eggs in a basket on the table for over a week this year. Your family will always have a special place in heart, and I think we may have a new family tradition at Easter.

Much love,

San Diego Mom said...

Happy belated Easter. I'm glad you enjoyed the break with the kids. Easter=Rebirth. The fact that you were able to have a fun trip with Hannah and Nicky shows that Max is reborn and coming alive among all of you, making sure you are all living life to the Max. Hugs and kisses to you all. (Boy, Nicky seems so big!)

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