Last year, we did not do an egg hunt. Even though we now know it’s pretty safe to be with other people outdoors, a year ago, we didn’t even know if masks were effective! We decided not to do an egg hunt. I mean, would we have to wipe down each egg? Would the kids socially distance? Would we all die of stress before the pandemic could take us down?
This year, we know more about how to be safe. We decided we still needed to keep it small, inviting a set of friends who are cousins with each other, and live right down the road from each other. They’re basically one big household.
I bought the fun colored bagels from Mr. J’s and set up a whole thing on my new porch (!).
I made the kids all line up while I explained the rules. Petra and Silas hid behind everyone else.
Because people have asked, here are the basic rules we use:
- A minimum number of eggs per person. This year, it was 20. Once they found 20, they had to stop until everyone had at least 20. Then they could all go looking for more.
- Sending out by age groups. This year, because James is still in a walking boot, he got to go out with the littlest ones, but generally, we have three groups, starting with the tinies, and we give them about 30 seconds between each group. I think one year, we had a specific color that was only allowed to be collected by people under 5, and we put those in easy spots. We haven’t done that recently.
- Boundaries. Boundaries are important, in egg hunts as in life. We told them where eggs were, broadly, so they didn’t waste time hunting through the bamboo or digging through the shed.
Another question people ask sometimes is, what do we put in the eggs? It depends on the year. Always candy, but we try to shake it up a bit.
- fake tattoos
- tiny Pokemon figures
- erasers in fun shapes
- slap bracelets
- cryptic clues (see 2018)
- tiny squishy animal toys
- flower seeds
- puzzle balls—they need six pieces, but we only put one piece per egg!
- hand-drawn comics by Silas
- FIMO creations by Petra
Other things we’ve learned for a good egg hunt:
- Put out a big laundry basket to collect empty eggs. That way you can do these multiple years in a row and not have lots of egg trash/egg buying
- Put out a trash can for candy wrappers, or you will have them all over your yard.
- Provide some kind of non-candy food and water. Even so, Silas opted not to eat the non-candy food and had a serious sugar crash this afternoon. But we try!
- For every one egg that is easy to spot, put three more near it, but covered with leaves or something.
- Don’t forget to put eggs up in trees, in the crotches of branches or hollows. We’ve also had some success putting them under an overturned flower pot. JC even put one on top of the zip line this year.
- Make sure everyone understands it’s not a competition. This year, for example, Silas (aka “Friend to Most“) partnered with James, who is recovering from an injury. Silas shared his eggs with James, and James is way better at visually spotting things than Silas, so he helped point out eggs Silas missed. That’s the kind of egg hunt attitude we want to see.
Past egg hunts: