Archive | March 2016

Spring Time Thoughts

It’s Easter weekend and I would normally write about my childhood memories as they relate to the upcoming Easter events.  However when I woke this morning, I was feeling rather melancholy.  Not too sure why but it must have to do with Easter.

Pysanky play an important part in traditional Ukrainian Easter customs.

You see yesterday I was on Skype with my family back East.  Everyone in my brother’s family was writing Ukrainian Easter eggs (Pysanky).  Now writing and colouring eggs is a very happy time and a tradition that I highly encourage everyone to participate in.  It was great to see my nieces, nephews and their partners busy heating up their kistkas, melting the beeswax and drawing on their eggs.  Great care and so much concentration was evident as their designs evolved on the eggs.  Not every egg was of a traditional Ukrainian design either.  Oh no, there were puppies and even Minions drawn on the delicate eggshells.  It was wonderful to see.

When I was growing up it was an expectation that everyone in the family set aside a couple of nights prior to Easter Sunday and make a Pysanka.  Even the child as young as two was given an opportunity to hold a kistka over a candle and then draw on an egg.   After the drawings (mostly scribbles), the eggs were immersed in the colourful dyes.  The little ones took great delight in watching the colours come to life as the wax melted away.  It wasn’t the greatest design but it was a start.


This was a special time when family members could be together.  It was a time to pass down traditions and tell stories of the “good old days”.  I recall when families gathered around the kitchen table or beside the wood stove and had face-to-face conversations.  One person I know called it “fire talking”.  Not sure where those stories went to.  Not sure where the time has gone to.

I am making an assumption that technology today has a lot to do with the “togetherness” time.  Now don’t get me wrong.  I’m not complaining about Facebook, Twitter or email.  I am just saying that it is the “table talk” that seems to be missing in many, many families.

So this Easter weekend, may you find a way to share time with those who are very important to you.  As I get older, I realize more and more that time is the one thing that quickly zips by in our life’s journey.

Spend time with those you love.  Maybe go to church and share in the blessing of the Easter paska.  Enjoy the paska on Easter morning and share in some family time.  Maybe you would like to decorate a Pysanky or two and pass on a tradition.   Or maybe, just sit down at your kitchen table and talk.


Христос воскрес !  Happy Easter everyone !


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Easter Dinner plans

It’s been a while since I posted.  I have been rather busy like most people I know.  I have recently retired and find that I no longer have time to do “anything”!

Actually that’s not true.  I do a lot but I’m doing what I want to do, when I want to do it.

One of the things I’m working on right now is adding to my Recipes here on my blog.  With Easter just around the corner in a couple of weeks, it’s time to plan out the dinner menus.

Funny!  Hmm, I just remembered something about making dinner plans and the telephone party-lines!

phone2-1024x812My mom used to call up my aunt on her farm to discuss recipes, menus and who was bringing what to the next family gathering.  The conversation went something like this:

Mom picked up the telephone receiver.


Mom:  “Hi Janice. Can you ring up 66 ring 4 for me?

My Aunt:  “Hello? Oh, hi Неллі . Уак справи ?”

Mom: “Добре. Say, what you making for dinner next Sunday?”

And then………my mom and aunt would hear click. Then another click.

Yes, that’s right. Other people on the party-line would pick up their telephones and listen in. At times, some of the women would even speak up and add their own menu and recipe ideas.

old_box_telephoneHow times have changed.  Today some homes do not even have a landline.

But you know what we still have?

Yes, Easter dinners.  Check out my Easter recipes and Traditional recipes on my pages.

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