Matthew Munson: Easter and family traditions

Matthew and Bryan

Easter is upon us, as is the end of term. I’m not religious, so the Christian meaning of Easter isn’t something that features in Casa de Munson. Chocolate features for my son and features heavily; he’s very lucky in that he has three Easter egg hunts that will make him very happy.

We have a tradition with our neighbours and their younger children that we do an egg hunt together, organised by the Easter Bunny. As Bryan is a bit older now, he actually got to help hide the eggs this year, which the Easter Bunny appreciated (and enjoyed having Bryan by his side). That was a lovely morning on Good Friday with our neighbours and friends; having lived here for six years (and Bryan for five), we’ve got a nice community of people around us, and I for one appreciate it.

Bryan’s grandparents always do a little hunt for Bryan as well, and it’s a nice chance for him to spend time with them. They see him regularly, I should say, but it’s events like this that he’ll cherish as he grows up – and maybe even recreate with his own children. The third hunt is just with me, but as we’ve already done a hunt with our neighbours, I’ve decided to think creatively this year. It’ll be an Easter quiz, where he has to answer questions of varying complexity in order to get some chocolate treats; it’s a chance for him to use his brain power, for us to spend some time together, and to do something a little different.

I’m also looking forward to going to the Broadstairs Food Fair on Sunday. That’s become something of a tradition for the two of us; enjoying a treat down on the seafront and then spending some time in the park. He’ll be sick of me at the end of the fortnight, but we’ll have some lovely memories to look back on.

We were lucky enough to visit his siblings last weekend, which is always fun, and they’re coming up to us next weekend for a belated birthday celebration for Bryan. He’s very excited, naturally, and it’s something else to look forward to during the holidays.

The weather is looking a bit wet and windy, so I’ve decided to just take each day as it comes. If we can do an activity – brilliant. If not, then there’s plenty of other things we can do; Bryan has a 9,000 piece Lego set to build, and he’s binging the board game Risk quite heavily at the moment; we’re playing almost daily right now, and it’s entering my dreams, which gives you a sense of how much we’re playing it. Still, far be it from me to argue; keeps screen time lowered a bit, so I encourage these sorts of games as much as possible.

I’m keen on family traditions as well, like I mentioned above; things Bryan will remember and (I hope) think of with fondness. I think back to my own childhood, and Christmases spent with my parents and wider family. There were traditions we followed every year, and I miss those I celebrated with my own grandparents – the daft parties, the silly games, and my grandparents themselves. Making sure that Bryan could enjoy our own traditions was always important to me; these times and these traditions anchor us to particular times and moments in our lives.

During the pandemic, the routine I had spent our first year together carefully crafting went out the window, but some traditions still remained – birthdays, holidays, special occasions. I got a lot out of them as well, and I know Bryan does too; even this weekend, I took Bryan into Ramsgate to do a couple of jobs and, as we walked home, we walked past a park. We had planned ahead, and Bryan had brought his football. We always try and play in this particular park when we walk past it, and  it is a chance to have time, live in the moment, and just have fun.

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