Easter Egg Hunts
What child doesn’t enjoy a good game of hide and seek? This is essentially what an Easter egg hunt is all about. You hide the eggs while the kids aren’t looking and then they have to find them, roaming around with the cutest of baskets to locate the ‘treasure.’
It’s fun to have family egg hunts for your kids, but it’s also fun to invite other kids along too, whether they are cousins, neighbors, or friends from afar. The more the merrier.
Leave those kids and parents with a happy Easter impression by hosting the ultimate Easter egg hunt, and here’s a guide to get you started:
- Some people like to dye real hard boiled eggs and leave them around. That’s great, but if your kids started eating them, not so much, as the shell of an egg is actually porous and can absorb that which it’s laying on- yes, for those chicken raisers, never eat that egg the hen laid on the ground!
- There is basic egg dyeing the folks at McCormick have some tips on egg-dyeing,
- And also creative things you can do with those eggs- check out these metallic dipped eggs from Better Homes & Gardens.
Plastic Easter Eggs
- You can pick these up in the Dollar Store, Wal-Mart, Target, Walgreens, and just about anywhere. They are cheap plastic and come in packages of 12-24- some are glittery, some are jumbo sized, but they all serve one purpose- the ability to hold something inside. You may find, especially with the cheaper eggs, that you’ll get a dud in the package- that one egg that won’t snap shut again. You can chuck it or use a piece of cello-tape to seal it.
What to put inside that Plastic Easter Egg
The only thing that restricts what you put inside the egg is size. So if you are purchasing those cute little Twix bars, you may want to grab a package of plastic eggs in-store just for reference- you can always put them back afterwards.
You can use pre-wrapped candy or something you open- like Jelly Beans. If you are hosting a hunt for other families and people you don’t know, sealed candy is best, like at Halloween. We are talking Tootsie Rolls, Chocolate Coins, Kisses, Mini-Chocolate Eggs, miniature wrapped everything. They have specialty candy just for Easter in the holiday section of every store right now. But don’t limit yourself to looking there. Check out the regular candy aisle as well.
And for all those marshmallow-peep lovers, the jumbo-sized plastic eggs will actually hold a small peep. Woohoo!
Yes, you need not limit yourself to candy-stuffed eggs. In fact, with more families becoming health-conscious, it’s good to use other options, or even start your kids on these other options. A dollar-store bag of little figures- like toy soldiers. Toy Cars. Play jewelry. Even nice seashells. Visit the party section of stores for the bags of party favors like rings and tops. Again- have an egg handy for sizing reference.
Now we are heading up-market and up price. Hot Wheel & Matchbox cars make a good egg stuffer, as do things like movie collectable figurines (You can find mini-Disney princesses and heroes in the Dollar Store).
Yup, now we are talking. This option is for egg hunts with older kids- not ones who might just stick it in their mouths! Every kid likes money. Whether you add a few quarters, a whole dollar bill, or more. You decide.
These are for family egg hunts. You can include home-made coupons good for an afternoon in the park with mom, an ice-cream date with dad. An hour at the arcade.
Eggs are rarely big enough to hold a Steam Card, but you can add a note- the bearer wins a $amount I-Tunes card, or 2 tickets to the movies.
The Golden Egg
Every egg hunt needs a golden egg. One of the owners of the former Cypress Gardens attraction used to put a scholarship-win in an egg at their egg hunt. Other people would have a $10 bill. You can use that gift card as your golden egg prize. Kids love the golden egg idea- especially the older kids.
Sharing the Egg Responsibility
If you have invited other families over, you can choose to do all of the eggs yourself, or you can ask each participating family to bring a certain number of pre-filled eggs to add to the hunt. A lot of times, they will offer to do this anyway. Just always keep track of the amount of eggs you have for your Easter egg hunt.
Fill Your Eggs
Time to stuff your eggs, and as you do that, count them! You need to know exactly how many eggs will be out there. Any eggs with chocolate candy should be stored in the fridge until hiding time if it’s hot outside to prevent sticky messes.
If you have older kids, you can get them to help you fill the eggs- at least the candy-filled ones.
Not everyone has an array of handy garden baskets hanging around, or gets an Easter basket for Easter. You can pick up inexpensive baskets in the Dollar Store or Wal-Mart. Or even use one of those reusable shopping bags or a child’s sand pail (cleaned, of course). Make sure every child has a container for collecting eggs. It’s a good idea to have some extra on hand if you have other children coming to participate in your egg hunt. Someone invariably forgets to bring one.
The Best Place to Hold an Easter Egg Hunt
The best place to host your Easter egg hunt is your own front yard. If you decide on a public green space, like a local park, be sure to ask permission first.
- Before your big day, have a yard clean up. And if you have a dog that includes safely depositing their poop- and you’ll have to have a second check on that front right before your guests arrive.
- You may not want kids climbing through your outdoor workshop or sticking their hands in the wood pile (snakes!) so set a designated egg hunt area.
- Upon your guest’s arrival, count the eggs! Then have the children gather for a game, like Simon Says, inside with one adult while the other adults hide the eggs- don’t forget those eggs you left in the fridge!
- Tips on Hiding Eggs
- For little kids, egg-hiding can be as simple as sticking it in the grass, or next to a tree. You don’t need to hide them too well.
- Got older kids? You need to be cleverer the older they are. This can include sticking them in trees and bushes- you can balance them between forking branches of low trees. Leave some obvious ones too just to get them in the ‘fever’.
Start the Egg Hunt
If you have different age groups, you can always stagger start according to age, letting the younger kids go first. Otherwise, just make sure all the kids have a container and let them know the exact boundaries of the egg hunt area, then let them loose.
When everyone has found the eggs, everyone needs to count their eggs- or get their parents to count the number of eggs they found. Add them up and compare them to your hide-count. It is guaranteed that there will be more eggs out there. So send the kids out again to find them. You may need to go along for a ‘you’re getting warmer or colder’ to help them. This is especially important if you have dogs that roam the yard and had chocolate in some of those eggs. Chocolate can be deadly for dogs- so find all those eggs.
So They Found All the Eggs Now What?
The kids will be tearing through their eggs, chucking them aside. Word of warning, if you have a mad desire to save the plastic eggs for next year- don’t, they don’t keep well and tend to get sticky with age.
Some parents will take their kids right after an egg hunt, others hang out for a while, so if you are keeping your party outside, make sure to have some outdoor seating and a table for the food. Use disposable plates and cups to keep the washing up a minimum, and always keep a sharpie marker on hand to write names on those cups. It saves everyone wonder whose drink belongs to who.
Now is a good time to bring out some refreshments (You can do this while the kids are hunting for the eggs). Lemonade, fruit infused water. Homemade cranberry-lemon slushies (use cran-apple for a sweeter version). Cupcakes or decorate your own cupcakes. Celery & carrot sticks with ranch dressing. Deviled Eggs. Some cut cheese and meats with crackers or add bread or small bread rolls (Hawaiian Rolls are a good idea) for a make your own sandwich.
With candy in them, kids are less likely wanting to structured activities. You can suggest games like freeze tag or Red Light-Green Light, but don’t be surprised or hurt if the games dissolve sooner than expected. That happens with kids and candy. Just relax and let them run and play. You can have coloring sheets and crayons for the younger set- or if you have a concrete drive, colored chalk for drawing outside, but don’t force any after egg-hunt activities.
After the Party
Your guests have departed and the mess cleaned up. Now’s a good time to stick in that Easter movie for the kids (Hop is a good one), while you crack into that chocolate you stashed in the back of the fridge when you bought that Easter candy- yeah, we all did the same thing too 😉
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