April 8th, 2004



Grey blah weather-day again. It's not raining, at least. I saw three pheasants at various intervals on the way to work, none of them, thankfully, splattered on the road shoulder. Pheasants are spectacularly stupid when it comes to roads and cars. It's like they are all starring in their own personal Pheasant With A Deathwish movie. Too bad Charles Bronson is dead, he could have run with that one.

Tonight is marathon egg-coloring night. There are currently over 30 children signed up for the Easter Egg Hunt on Sunday and each of the little dears needs to go home with 5-6 eggs. Assuming they don't all get piled into a huge, cracked, muddy pile like they did last year, making me all sad about the amount of work, not to mention food, wasted. Since I'm coloring at least 3 dozen eggs, we'll probably be doing a little conveyor belt system. I'm planning on drawing rabbits and flowers on some of the eggs with white crayon, and wrapping others with rubberbands (So.Very.Martha.Stewart.) and then it will be dunk, dunk, dunk, until we're done. I use the traditional boiling-water-vinegar-food-coloring method of dying which, while still making your fingers purple, at least wears off quicker than some of the newfangled Easter egg dye kits I've seen.

This morning, there were little witches at the dagis when I dropped Karin off. There are certain superstitions attached to Easter here in Sweden. People believed that witches were especially active and their black magic especially powerful during this week. On Maundy Thursday they were thought to fly off on brooms to consort with the devil at Blåkulla (blue mountain) to visit Satan, returning the following Saturday. Many folk lit bonfires in the evenings and shot guns into the air to scare the witches away. Easter bonfires are also especially the custom in the western provinces, where villages vie to see who can make the biggest one. The custom of shooting also lives on, albeit in the form of shooting off fireworks.

On Easter Eve, Swedish girls and boys dress up as witches and hags, called Påskkärringar, wearing headscarfs and skirts, to pay visits to their neighbors. A sort of combination Halloween-Easter thing. Some leave a small decorated card, an "Easter letter", hoping for a sweet or coin in return. This isn't a black pointy hat, green face witch, by the way. These Swedish witches have babushka headscarves, red circle cheeks, freckles, and multicolored skirts and aprons.

I bet those witches are going to be surprised at Blue Mountain when my daughter shows up in her tiger costume, which is what she insisted on wearing today.

Truth is Weirder Than Fiction: Eyeball Jewelry

Attention Writers! The deadline for the May 15th issue of Mosaic Minds is coming up sooner than you think. If you'd like to submit, the theme for the May issue is Heroes and Role Models, and the deadline is April 30th. Articles, stories, poetry, all are welcome! :)

And finally, a very very happy birthday to reebert! Marie, I got the package yesterday, thank you VERY much for all the fun crafty stuff!! I have to admit I'm a little scared of the tiny bead packages but I bet I'll have fun figuring out how to do things with them without making a humongous mess!
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