Spring: Simple Childhood Magic.

How was your Easter? Ours – which is simply our Spring Celebration held a few weeks late to dodge the usual un-spring-like snow – was nothing short of magical. It always is.

There was the Easter Bunny hiding baskets, the magical egg hunt out in the yard, and our adored Wish Bunny's appearance during the egg hunt (more on that later). Oh, yeah. Our spring celebration is loaded with magic.

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We're magic junkies I guess. A spring celebration with not one but two magical rabbits is the giveaway. At other times of year you'll find us welcoming Santa Claus, Saint Nick, and the Tooth Fairy. Even the Winter Solstice Elves, the Pumpkin Fairy, and the Rhyme Elves. We're almost always entertaining folks from other realms over here.

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 We made a conscious choice when Sage was a baby to keep the magic alive and to invite all of these mystical folks into our world with each season. I know parents who have opted against this form of magic in childhood. They take the honest road with their kids, and don't participate in the customs that surround these myths. I was almost one of them. Years ago I argued that "magic" was just a friendly word for "lying" to your kids. Why on earth would I lie to my kids?

Because, I discovered, the magic of childhood sparks the imagination of the child in a way that nothing else can.

Children are born into magic. They live in a creative, imaginative world where anything is possible. The magic we allow into our customs helps to show our children that yes, anything is possible. Imagine it and it will be yours. Magic helps children be carefree – as they are supposed to be – and lets them dance in the joy of what only they can see.

Magic is vital. 

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In case you are curious yesterday's magic went something like this at our home: To celebrate the equinox the children woke with the sun and searched the house for their baskets, hidden in the night by the bunny. (As I talked about here, the treasures we put in our baskets are simple, natural, and modest. Yesterday Sage and Lupine found this items pictured above plus some a couple of fruit leathers, and honey sticks. They were beside themselves with happiness and played with the dolls all day long.)

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We set the nature table to resemble an egg hunt and later in the morning (after the eggs magically appeared) we enjoyed that search as well – the highlight of the day for us all.

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The final bit of spring magic happens during the hunt at our house with the appearance of the Wish Bunny. There is only one Wish Bunny to be found, hidden somewhere in the yard. She use to be made of chocolate but these days she has transformed into a great big needle felted rabbit. When one of the children stumbles upon her everyone gathers around and the kids offer her something from each of their baskets – a thank you or offering of sorts to bring giving (as well as receiving) into the day. Then they whisper a wish in her ear and accept a treat that she has brought with her (yesterday she brought lemon-almond cookies that were ridiculously good).

Sage absolutely lives for the Wish Bunny. He says that he can hear her talking in his head when he talks to her.

My boy believes in magic to a degree that makes me believe too. Because really, I do. There is magic everywhere if we slow down enough to feel it. But I believe in magic in an adult abstract way that I could never explain adequately to Sage or Lupine. Not half as well as the Wish Bunny can.

Would I readily trade all of this wonder for "mom and dad hid the eggs and baskets" or "mama made the dolls and the bunny?" Not in a million years. Magic belongs in childhood and I will be the last person to try to break that spell.

25 thoughts on “Spring: Simple Childhood Magic.

  1. Denise says:

    Those little dolls are beautiful, Rachel! They remind me of that pattern in Living Crafts way back when – is that what you used for the knitted dress? Oh, and the Wish Bunny made a first appearance during our egg hunt as well this year. . .but there was NO way that I was going to get Cedar to offer a gift to her from his basket without tears. . .even if it was for his first ever chocolate bunny! So my little guy (who can’t eat eggs anyways) managed to offer her a dyed egg instead : )

  2. Danielle Grabiel says:

    I love the egg hunt nature table and the wish bunny. I totally agree with you regarding magic. To this day, I recall with so much fondness and joy the hours I spent playing with all sorts of imaginary and ethereal beings. Gosh, isn’t that what being a kid is all about?! It’s so real to children.

    We started a new tradition (well, most of ours are new because our kids are so little) and performed an Easter play on Easter Eve with handmade puppets…well, our Easter Story (it’s a bit Pagan and we love it!)

  3. crystal.m. says:

    Magical! I adore that you have Sage and Lupine offer the Wish Bunny one of their treats- very thankful, and what a great way for them to welcome him back every year. I so enjoyed reading this post- thank you so much for sharing 🙂

  4. Lori says:

    Oh I love the magic of childhood. My Lexi loves the fairies that come visit. She makes fairy houses our of all sorts of boxes, cardboard, tape, decorations. Yes childhood is suppose to be magical.

  5. Rachel Wolf says:

    Thank you Denise. I used the dress pattern from a 2007 (I think) Living Crafts Mag. Since I am never a fan of how wool hair looks on a little doll I went for bead heads. So fun to make, though the dress gets a little fussy at the end. Im happy to hear that you adopted a Wish Bunny of your own. It is really our favorite spring magic of all. And the new one, needle felted at the 11th hour, adds a whole other dimension.

    Hugs,
    Rachel

  6. Rachel Wolf says:

    Your play sounds right up our alley! The Wish Bunny is drawn from Pagan traditions as well… well, so are nearly all of the Easter traditions if we really distill it down!

    Happiness,
    Rachel

  7. Rachel Wolf says:

    Crystal,
    The other incredible moment for us was when Sage found a very large felt egg that he had sewn. It had four special treats inside. He immediately called Lupine over and gave one to her, then offered Pete and I each one as well. My heart swelled. He gave out of love. Pure fullness of love. I believe the Wish Bunny tradition was improvised from something I read in Circle Round – a wonderful book!

    ~ Rachel

  8. Karlamcurry.wordpress.com says:

    I, too, am one of those parents who has debated whether or not I should “lie” to my children. I’ve decided that the “magic” of childhood is essential… but I’m not sure how far I should take it, for how long. We’ve done a bit of the Santa for Christmas (although he doesn’t bring all the presents), but we also want our kids to be grateful for the things that are *given* to them, they don’t just *appear*. Aggh, so many choices as a parent!

    How did you make those doll dresses? Are they just peg dolls underneath? I bet my girl would love those!

  9. Rachel Wolf says:

    Hi Karla,
    The dolls are wooden beads, dowels, and a wooden wheel for a stable base. Arms are pipe cleaners with bead hands glued in place. The dress is knitted from a pattern in the second issue of Living Crafts Magazine – Spring 2007 I believe, but it might have been 2008.

    All the best,
    Rachel

  10. Valarie Budayr says:

    Hi Rachel! This is my first time to your blog. I found you via Dr.Payne. I’m finished with chapter two and look forward to a great discussion. So glad the childhood magic abounds at your house. We still have the magic here as well. My kids are 21,18,and 12 and live with a little bit of magic everyday and really pull put the stops for celebrations. Thanks for creating the book club. Be well.

  11. Rachel Wolf says:

    I was amazed at how good those cookies are. I could have eaten the batter raw instead of making cookies if the bunny wasnt counting on me. Thanks again for sharing that website with me!
    ~ Rachel

  12. Angela says:

    I am all about magic. I know what you mean about people over-explaining and taking the magic out of childhood. Even for us adults, I think there is plenty of magic around! I loved seeing how you all celebrate!

  13. Nicole Penick says:

    love it!
    what are the eggs made of that the bunny hides? also where did you get the idea for the wish bunny– i have never heard of that but I like the idea. i am really enjoying creating these traditions now that my son is two.

  14. susan says:

    Sage is looking sharp! I love that they are all dressed up!

    I, too, have struggled with the Santa & Easter Bunny stuff, but I think what you settled on – keeping the magic – feels right to me. Thanks. Thank goodness my daughter is still small enough that I can tweak our traditions a little until I find what feels right.

  15. Rachel Wolf says:

    Susan
    The dressing up was all them. So sharp, and so vintage. Steals my heart. We did a great deal of holiday tweaking through the early years. But by the time Sage was four everything was locked in, so be sure what you do at four you are ready to do forever!

    ~ Rachel

  16. Carli Cook says:

    Hi Rachel, I’m not sure if you’ll see this since it’s on an old post… I came here hoping you’d had some advice for me on santa and kids. I love that your family believes so much in magic. I’d love to have my kids be that way, but how do you encourage it when, as an adult, you don’t believe in magic? I’m far too practical(boring?) and have such a hard time encouraging it in my children. And how far do you take the santa thing? I don’t like using santa as a threat for good behavior, but it seems so many parents do that. Would love any advice you might have. Thanks!!

  17. Rachel Wolf says:

    Hi Carli,
    I never use magic as a bribe to encourage good behavior. The Santa knows when youve been bad or good is literally laughable to my kids. Here is how I see it – I do believe in magic, though not in the child-like sense. I believe that we live among such magic and beauty and this is one way my children become aware of it. They see fairies in the frost and hear singing in the wind. And that is what Im going for. Santa and other tangible magic simply opens them to seeing the magic and beauty that is all around. Hope this helps!

    Rachel Wolf
    Owner and Founder, LuSa Organics
    http://www.lusaorganics.com
    rachel@lusaorganics.com

    blogging at http://www.lusaorganics.typepad.com
     
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