Jasper’s first Easter egg hunt was last year, in 2017, a few short months after we moved to Alaska. A church in our town puts on an egg drop for the local children. This means that a helicopter flies over a field next to the high school in town, and drops tons of eggs all over while everyone watches. Then the children are set free to go collect the eggs like a normal Easter egg hunt. Children have to be four before they can participate in the actual egg drop hunt, so Jasper was and still is too young to participate. However, that year he was able to have fun at the toddler egg search, and we all enjoyed watching the helicopter drop more than 30,000 eggs!
For more information about the Easter Egg Drop please visit the ACF Church Page.
This year Jasper’s egg hunt looked a little different! We decided to forgo the egg drop until Jasper was old enough to participate. Instead we joined other Hike it Baby families to participate on a trail egg hunt! Did you know that snowy footprints are a great place to hide Easter eggs? Jasper was able to run along the trail collecting eggs! He loved it!
Jasper was near the head of the line of hikers for most of the hike. We were limited to 10 eggs per child so that the little ones would have a fair share. Limitations are hard to explain to a two-year-old. For this reason we had Jasper looking for specific colors of eggs and had great success with that.
This hike was at Reflections Lake off the Glen Highway. It is around a one mile loop and we do this hike with other Hike it Baby families about once a week. This was Jasper’s fastest mile to date! Usually this is a 1.5-2 hour mile. On this day we made it all the way around in less than 1 hour! I’m sure this seems like a crazy amount of time for a mile. However, those with toddlers understand the patience it takes to stop every three minutes along a trail and examine a stick or roll in a puddle. There is no hurrying a toddler, and the fun they have along the way is priceless!
This was a project I had been wanting to try for awhile now. It seems like such a no-brainer when you have a toddler. Toddlers equal to a million broken crayons.
The best way that I have found to peel crayons is to soak them in some water. In some cases, this will take the paper off without any further effort. However, in other cases, you may still need to use your nails to peel the paper off.
Once the paper had been removed from the outside of the Crayons, I broke them into smaller pieces. Then I allowed Jasper to arrange the pieces into the Easter egg molds any way he chose. Once all the Crayons had been put into the mold I placed the mold onto a cookie sheet and put the cookie sheet into our oven, preheated to 300 degrees Fahrenheit. After 10 minutes I checked the on the molds. The crayons in the middle of the mold were not completely melted. I moved the Crayons around the mold using a toothpick. Then I put them back in the oven for 5 minutes. I repeated this process one more time. Once the Crayons were completely melted, I removed them from the oven and allowed them cool completely before removing from the mold.
Jasper had a great time coloring with his Easter egg crayons! My husband really enjoyed this project too. Once done with the Easter egg crayons he ended up pulling out all of the silicon ice cube trays that we owned and making crayons with them! This is a fun project and a great way to recycle something that would otherwise be tossed out!
Water play is such a great way for children to explore their world. They can scoop, pour, splash, measure and so much more! Children can experiment with how the eggs float when empty, but sink when filled with water. The water can drip slowly from the whole in the bottom of the egg, or the children and dump it out with a splash! If you wanted to add some extra interest for older kids, including colored water or other Easter themed items!
In true Jasper style, he did end up making the project way more messy than it needed to be…
He got into the water bin.
What child doesn’t love a project they can eat!
We followed the directions on the Jell-O box. Jasper was so excited to pour the Jell-o packet into the bowl. Of course, being a toddler he spilled some of it, but that doesn’t really matter. Table clothes make for easy clean up! He also had a great time stirring the Jell-O and pouring the cold water into the bowl!
When pouring the Jell-O into the silicon molds, make sure you have the molds on a moveable flat surface. We used a cookie sheet. I ladled the Jell-O into the molds and we allowed it to set in the refrigerator.
Extracting the jell-o from a silicon mold is a process in itself. If you try to just take it out, the jell-o will only tear. However, if you let the silicon mold rest in a warm water bath for a short time (don’t let the water get into the mold), then the jello will slide right out, shape intact!
This project offered so much more than I originally thought. Not only did Jasper get to pour and mix the ingredients, it opened up a discussion involving his sense of touch, smell and taste. We talked about what the Jell-O felt like. Jasper enjoyed poking it. This turned into squishing it through his hands and eventually (with my encouragement) he start squishing it through his teeth as well! Then we talked about how it smelled. This lead Jasper to lick the Jell-O. I asked him what it tasted like. He wasn’t sure at first but we finally agreed that it tasted like oranges! Jasper had a blast!
I still remember in preschool putting marbles and paint into a bin and rolling the marbles around to make art. I could not have been more than four at the time, and I was probably younger. However, I still remember LOVING it! This is a version of that project that I loved, but with Easter eggs instead of marbles and a disposable cooking pan to (theoretically) keep the mess to the minimum. However, if you continue reading you will see that once again my husband became involved with this project, which means a little mess turned into a BIG mess!
I instructed Jasper to rolls his plastic Easter eggs around in small trays of paint. Then we put the construction paper into the disposable cooking pan, Jasper threw the eggs in on top, then I closed the lid. Jasper started by simply rolling the eggs around in the pan.
However, as I knew he would, the rolling soon turned into shaking the eggs as hard as he could! This is where the lid
for the pan came in big help! Jasper had a ton of fun creating artwork in
this way. Then my husband walked over with some confetti Easter eggs. The next time we added the plastic Easter eggs to the pan, my husband threw in a confetti egg. Jasper shook the pan until the confetti egg broke and I had to admit the artwork did turn out pretty cool looking with the confetti added to it! However, this was followed with my husband and Jasper throwing the remaining confetti eggs at each other and then all over my kitchen. The confetti mixed with the paint, all over my kitchen was not the most fun thing to clean up. Then to top it all off, the cats starting walking through all of it! At least the boys had fun!
Like 99% of the other families with small children, we also dyed Easter eggs! Jasper was none too patient with the eggs. The stickers in the store bought kit didn’t stick. The dye took forever to take and we all got bored. We started with a with a store bought egg dying kit and we ended with dripping food coloring onto the eggs to try to create patterns. We attempted to use a whisk to keep the egg dying process “mess free” as I have seen again and again on Pinterest. I’m thinking that the whisk
is meant for older children. First Jasper wanted to put the egg into the whisk himself. Then he wanted to take the egg out of the whisk once the egg was in the dye, resulting in the dye getting all over the place. This method just created more of a mess, but overall this whole project actually wasn’t as messy as I thought it would be, so I’ll count that as a win! In the end we were pretty happy with the way our eggs turned out!
Many people who live in Alaska are a few thousand miles away from their families. In our case we are almost four thousand miles away. If we lived closer to home we would be celebrating with our families. Instead we have Easter dinner with friends who are also thousands of miles away from their families. That is not ideal but we are happy with it. Easter in Alaska isn’t much different than the rest of the country. We have Easter egg hunts, we eat ham at dinner, we dye eggs. It is just a bit colder and we have a lot more snow in our egg hunt photos!
To see more of our adventures visit us on Instagram!
Category: alaska, Preschool Projects, Uncategorized Tags: alaska, collecting, collecting eggs, confetti eggs, crayons, dying, easter, easter basket, easter bunny, easter egg, egg drop, egg hunt, family, food, friends, helicopter, hike, hike it baby, jell-o, measure, messy, paint, painting, pinterest, pour, recycle, scoop, shaking, splash, stirring, water, water bin, water play