On an errand the other day, my daughter was thrilled to find packages of brightly colored plastic eggs. You know, the kind that get separated and stepped on within hours of the great hunt. There were plain ones. Flowered ones. Football ones. She was hooked.
And I said no.
Granted, in nearly five years of parenthood, I've yet to succumb to buying plastic eggs. For one, my mother has a set she's willing to part with each spring. For another, it's just another thing to store - or step on. (If you haven't guessed, it's a problem in our home.)
But as my children get a little older, I'm starting to wonder if this isn't the year to try dyeing Easter eggs. I remember year after year fighting over who put their eggs into which color with my brother, and, about as vividly, the vinegary smell the room took on as those little colored pellets dissolved. And I remember my parents complaining about the mess.
I wondered if the "natural dye" method is a better way, and started to look into it last year. It may be less smellier, but it seems a bit more complicated. You either are working many pots on the stove, each boiling eggs with its natural color dye of choices, or you soak those eggs overnight with the natural dyes. Either way, you run the risk of having "off-flavored" eggs - such as onion or spinach - if you eat them after the hunt. And it doesn't seem to have the instant-gratification factor that preschoolers desire.
So I leave the question to you this morning. When you're getting ready to dye eggs in a few weeks, what method to you choose? Commercial? Natural? And why?