How to Have a Kind Easter Celebration

How to Have a Kind Easter Celebration

Spring has sprung and, for those who celebrate, Easter is just around the corner. Easter is a celebration of rebirth and renewal, so it is only right that we should be conscious of how we can help foster a rebirth and renewal of the Earth on this holiday as well.

We like to spend this special day with a delicious breakfast, gardening, and taking a walk where beautiful flowers are in bloom. Easter weather can often be perfect for kite-flying, too. Of course, we also eat marshmallows and do some dyeing!

Between all of the chocolate and egg dyeing, and classic lamb or ham roasts, traditional Easter celebrations can be harmful to both our planet and the creatures that inhabit it. So, I have put together this little guide full of ideas to help you plan a vegan and harm-free celebration! 

Everyone from children to adults can enjoy the activity of dyeing lovely pastel easter eggs. There are plenty of alternatives to still enjoy this celebratory craft without using real eggs. 

  • Paint or dip-dye some ceramic eggs (a company called Eggnots makes these) or wooden eggs that will last. 
  • Marshmallow Eggs (marshmallows)  are also really fun to dip dye! 
  • For your easter egg hunt, instead of buying and using plastic eggs check out these paper easter eggs that you can paint or papier-mache! 
  • You can also set up a scavenger hunt in your yard or a park and put out your eggs or other treats.
  • Design a creative scavenger hunt for your kids to enjoy, or reverse roles and have the kids get imaginative and the adults do the hunt.
  • Have fun growing your own grass for your family’s Easter baskets or making it by coloring and cutting scrap paper into small blades.
  • Support a compassionate Easter basket with healthy items like dried fruit or creative gifts such as a gardening kit, saplings, organic cotton/soy stuffed bunnies or baby farm animals, animal-based picture books, or vintage paper mache eggs.
  • Hold out on purchasing a bunny or chick even though it may seem fun and appropriate as an Easter gift. Animal welfare agencies throughout the U.S. get swamped with thousands of pet Easter gifts once they are no longer wanted. If you have seriously considered getting a pet, try to adopt from rescue organizations first, and gift your child a how-to book on caring for that pet.
  • Try to avoid sugary and unhealthy foods if you can. It’s helpful to feed him or her healthy and filling foods prior to the candy-based activities or bring along healthier alternatives.
  • When decorating with flowers, try picking them right from your backyard. If not possible, look for cut flowers that are both Organic and Fair Trade certified.
  • If you have family and friends who will be hosting with egg-based foods and activities, encourage them to support organic, human certified, vegetarian-fed, and cage-free eggs. If you want to go a step further, promote using the egg waste by composting or in other recipes.

What’s Wrong With Eggs?

In our family, we don’t buy eggs largely because of how commercial chickens are treated. More than 325 million egg-laying hens are forced into laying nearly 100 billion eggs every year.

These smart and curious birds live in tightly packed, dark, and dirty conventional factories, which are notorious for their inhumane treatment of the birds, whether it’s depriving them of space, light, and natural interactions, or damaging their bodies with unnecessary hormones and antibiotics.

Even if the eggs are “organic” or “pastured,” the birds still aren’t given the kind of life that all creatures fairly deserve. In The Kind Diet I discuss eggs in detail, and mention that that is no legal definition of “free-range” eggs, and the only certifications that are upheld are the “Certified Humane Raised and Handled” (and it must say exactly that on the package!) or “Certified Organic”, which only upholds some of the relatively humane standards. I’ll stick to the marshmallows and wooden eggs, thanks!

Vegan Easter
Photo by Jessy Smith on Unsplash

Ethical Chocolates

Another consideration when filling up your Easter basket or easter eggs is ethical chocolate. Many chocolate brands are sourcing cocoa from farms and plantations that exploit workers and use child labor, and can also include incredibly harmful ingredients like palm oil or milk.

If you are unsure whether the brand of chocolate you are buying is ethical, you can check that it is recommended by the Food Empowerment Project! This fantastic California-based nonprofit organization has launched a campaign to end the worst forms of child labor in cocoa production. They compiled this handy list of vegan chocolate companies that do not source cocoa from regions where the worst forms of child labor are common. 

Before we get too sad about one more thing we can’t have, I have good news! All of
my favorite chocolate companies on the list are all on the recommended ethical list If your favorite company isn’t on this list or isn’t recommended by FEP, reach out to them and urge them to make their practices sustainable and to get on FEP’s recommended list!

Lagusta’s Luscious chocolate Easter assortment is yum, and best to order in advance as they sell out super quickly. They change the offerings annually but if they have these this year, we loved the Matzo Toffee, Maple Honeycomb, Chocolate Nougat (Bunny), English Cream Egg, Riesling Rosewater Caramels, Peanut Butter Egg, “Milk” Chocolate Marble Egg, Miso + Black Sesame Caramels! 

Vegan Easter
Photo by Michal Balog on Unsplash

Another simple way to get your sweets in on Easter is to bake some vegan treats to celebrate with your loved ones like these:

If you are looking for cruelty-free vegan recipes to make for a celebratory Easter dinner for your family or friends, my book has great recipes to check out. Or you can try this Seitan in Balsamic Wine Reduction, or King Oyster “Scallop” recipe from the blog!

A perfect Easter to me is spending time making a lovely kind brunch, taking a walk enjoying all the flowers and pretty trees in bloom and especially smelling fresh jasmine in the air, working on the veggie garden, and maybe dyeing some vegan marshmallows as a fun alternative to eggs (way yummier, too!), and maybe visiting an animal sanctuary enjoying beautiful, kind moments with the wonderful animals. Of course, visiting adorable rescued bunnies on Easter is festive, but you can also love on the cows, turkeys, sheep, chickens, and all the other cute rescue farm animals! You can also donate to a bunny rescue organization or print out a rabbit photo and explain to your children how the donation supports their wellbeing.

I hope these ideas inspire your celebrations.

But that doesn’t mean we have to miss out on the Easter fun. In fact, by avoiding eggs you can have a much sweeter and lovelier celebration that honors the spirit of this fun holiday.  I hope you plan some fun, sustainable celebrations, and that everyone has a wonderful holiday! HAPPY SPRING!

Love,
Alicia

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