Let’s talk about the Passover – Easter issue for a moment
First, to my Jewish readers, I’ve heard from a few people who feel stressed by the Easter themed activities at schools and day cares. Several people told me they asked the management to stop doing Christian activities and were met with resistance. Take a moment to remember that we all live in America which is primarily English speaking, white, and Christian. Would we be more patient if we were in Mexico with a culture that is Spanish speaking, brown and Catholic? There is a dominant culture and we all know that it is not Jewish. Asking secular Americans to give up practices that have delighted them and their parents for generations is not going to be received warmly. You can point out the Christian basis of Easter eggs and bunnies, but you will probably have more success with suggesting that the site add spring traditions from other cultures. Talk to other parents. Are there Muslim, Swedish, Buddhist, Chinese, Wiccan families? Why not have each of you share spring holiday traditions? Your kids will love it and the whole class will come away with more knowledge of “the other.”
Second, ask your spouse what they love about whatever it is that is disturbing you. If it’s the egg hunt maybe they love the fun of hiding and seeking, or the beauty of the painted eggs. Find out what it is and ponder how you could introduce that element with a Jewish bent. You could make more of the Afikomen hunt.
Knowledge is power. What are the pieces of the Easter story and practice? Read about them here. You’ll even get a new perspective on colored eggs!
Now to the Christians, whether religious or cultural (read more about cultural Christianity here) yours is the dominant culture. You have already won. My guess is that you would not insist that a vegetarian friend eat meat at your house just because you think it is delicious. So try to give room to your non-Christian partner. More is not necessarily better. Sometimes doing just one tradition allows for a deeper and more meaningful experience, especially if that tradition is not a part of the surrounding community. I’ve heard Jews say, “I’d be happy if my spouse/office/school would just acknowledged that they are part of the dominant culture.” Sometimes it is about being seen and understood. Discuss it as a couple.
OK, let’s all go enjoy our loved ones!
A few last minute tips for your Seder
Charoset can be made all sorts of ways because Jews have always used the fruits and nuts of the country in which they found themselves. Additionally, the local cuisine has made its way into what is served. Here are a few ideas.
I always have Seder with my dear friend/sister. We each have a specific charoset that must be present. Mine in Moroccan and hers is Italian. We just tried recipes until we settled on what our families love.
Mine is here
Hers is here
Don’t make people be hungry; feed them! Here’s a super fun idea that a friend sent me, BUG APPETIZERS, how perfect for a Seder.
Don’t let a week without bread phase you. Embrace it! I’ll be sending lots of kosher for Passover recipes out. Have fun with it. Indulge in spring fruits and veggies. Have steak or fish or both.