Maddie started asking about twenty days before Easter. I mean at Valentine’s Day she made a basket of candy for the Easter Bunny.
Are we going to dye eggs? When are we going to dye eggs? Can we dye eggs?
The long anticipated day arrived and with gusto she filled those cups using precise measurements. She planned out each egg and even allowed mommy and daddy to do a few.
I quietly placed an egg in red and waited. Listening to her giggle and carry on with her daddy. When it was just right, I carefully took it out and in it went to orange, yellow, and green. By this time it was turning a ghastly shade of pukish green.
At this point Maddie notices and sighs and groans to show she just doesn’t understand this tradition of ours. It belongs to my mom, sister, brother, dad and me.
So I sigh in return and try to tell her again about how mommy and aunt Jen and uncle Mike always made the ugly egg for Papa. How it started as an accident and then snowballed into a yearly jokey tradition. How her Papa would come home tired and weary from one of many shifts and in his boisterous way give us a hard time about this supremely ugly egg. How we would cover our faces with our little hands and try not to let him see the giggles. How we would fail miserably and love every second of it.
Maddie giggles along at all the right places. I know it’s hard for her heart to attach to this story she is not a part of. I know my stories and pictures of Papa give her some connection but he’s not a three dimensional grandpa for her. He’s a memory of her momma’s.
So Maddie looks at the ugly egg and exclaims “That looks like boogers! We should give that one to Grandpa!” She’s got her own endless jokes and tom foolery relationship with her other Grandpa.
I can’t help but think that maybe Papa led us to this point. Maybe he wants to look down and see those little hands hiding a big ol’ smile. Or hear those little giggles abound.
So Grandpa John is getting the ugly, I mean, booger egg.
And I know that Papa is smiling.