Like all holidays, Easter is no exception when it comes to over-consumption. We've covered Christmas and Halloween, and now we've come to Easter. A festival of pagan origin whose origins are slowly being forgotten, and which is increasingly being transformed into a festival of excessive consumption.But where does the idea of the Easter hunt come from?
There is a wealth of historical evidence that places the egg at the heart of many traditions. According to our European roots, in the Middle Ages, eggs were among the foods forbidden by the Church during the forty days of fasting preceding Easter. Owners of laying hens were left with a large quantity of eggs. To avoid wasting them, they began to decorate them and offer them as gifts. Louis XIV asked for the largest egg laid during Holy Week. The king ended up giving his courtesans large baskets filled with gilded eggs as gifts.
In France, tradition has it that the bells bring back eggs from Rome on Resurrection Day and scatter them in the gardens... and then the hunt for eggs is on! Anglo-Saxon culture later introduced the Easter bunny.Chocolate: buy less, give better
Chocolate gifts are certainly the most popular at this time of year. Over the years, we've seen quality turn into quantity, and over-wrapping is no exception! Poor quality means palm oils, wax, phthalates and a host of other elements we don't want in our food. Add to this the deplorable working conditions in cocoa farming: child labor, wages of $300/year, use of toxic pesticides...
Fortunately, there are alternatives. Good-quality organic and fair-trade chocolate has appeared on our shelves in recent decades.
It's easy to decorate eggs in an eco-friendly way, just as medieval families did. Simply empty them from their shells, pierce a hole at each end and soak them in boiled water with red onion peel (for a reddish color), beet juice (pink), spinach (green) or saffron (yellow-orange). Nothing could be more magical!
Eggshells can also be used to make seedlings, both as original centerpieces and as gifts for family and friends. Once again, you'll need to carefully empty the eggs by drilling a small hole at both ends. On one side, enlarge the opening to about 2/3 the height of the shell. Place two centimetres of soil and sow a few herb seeds. Place them back in their container so that they stand upright, and cover them with a small dome perforated in a few places. Place the container near a sunny window. As soon as the shoots touch the film, remove it.Practical gifts
Fewer and fewer families give the gift of chocolate alone. The era in which we live is propelling us towards greater diversity... If you'd like to give something else, why not combine the practical with the pleasurable? Easter is also the approach of the spring season. With the change of season comes an emerging need. The children have grown up, and it's time to take stock of our needs. So let's offer what's needed: a new pair of shoes, a summer outfit, a pair of sandals... I'm sure you need look no further. Once again, the watchword here is to buy less and buy better. Favoring eco-friendly, sustainable clothing and accessories should be at the forefront of your mind when it comes to making a purchase.
We can also offer totally original, locally-made gifts. Gifts that will impress not only by their appearance, but also by the intention behind them. Gifts that reduce waste! There's an emerging zero-waste trend that will help you in your choice: reusable snack bags, grocery bags, make-up remover pads...Buying clothes for the occasion?
Yes and no. No, if it's a piece of clothing that you'll be wearing only for the occasion. Yes, if the clothing corresponds to a real need you have, you'll be wearing it on a regular basis until the end of its life, and you've chosen it carefully, considering eco-friendly spring clothing.