Thrifted Easter Baskets

Why am I writing about Easter baskets so many months after Easter, you might ask? Is she on drugs, you probably wonder? Yes. Yes I am (but not any of the fun ones). I just really wanted to write about these baskets because I want to share the amazingness of thrifted and thrifty Easter basket goods, and I’ve been too sick until now to muster up the energy to do so. I spent very little on these baskets and I did it by shopping and collecting stuff for them early and taking advantage of thrift stores and sales.

I’ve seen lots of parents complain that Easter has become like a second Christmas for some families, and they go all out with gifts. To each their own, I say, I don’t really have an opinion one way or the other. That’s just not the way we do it. Each year I like to focus on giving gifts that relate to the season of Spring and that give us a reason to get outside and start using them and taking advantage of the weather, which for us is usually perfect temperatures before the heat really sets in. That said, it’s not an Easter basket in our house unless it contains something for the garden.

Two major things were different from this year and last: 1. we actually made an Easter basket for Elias this year, and, 2. both kids had new-to-them baskets. I didn’t bother to get out Isobel’s DIY basket that we filled with thrifted goods in previous years because she scored this sweet Hello Kitty one at a neighbor’s yard sale. She uses it for storage in her room year-round. Since I didn’t have to worry about Elias needing a basket he could carry around with him I indulged myself and used this chicken-shaped wire basket (that I just love) for his Easter goodies. I got it at Jacob’s grandma’s yard sale, the same one where we scored this genius piece of thrift store gore.

A little note about our Easter: it didn’t exactly go as planned. Isobel and I had been really sick the weekish or so before, and by this weekend, Elias was getting over his bout with it and Anthony was dancing with Sudafed as he was thoroughly infected. Isobel and I still really wanted to attend the yearly egg hunt with her cousins, so the boys stayed at home and Isobel and I went. For whatever reason, she refused to wear the lovely Easter dress grandma bought her that she wore just a few days prior for Easter portraits. Instead she insisted on wearing this pink cheongsam. We bought it at thrift store a couple years ago and I had no idea if it even still fit. Fortunately it did and we made it out the door in one piece. I took a ton of cute photos of her and her cousins both hunting, and waiting impatiently, for the eggs. The next weekend I lost all my photos of this event (and a few others) in a hard drive crash, so I’m thankful I uploaded the ones I did to flickr. They are here if you want to see them.

On to the contents!

  • Eggs: Isobel got jelly beans, Elias’ were empty. (He was just thrilled to play with them.) From Easter storage.
  • Bubbles! I think it’s tradition at this point. From discount store.
  • Flowers: part of the gardening I mentioned earlier. One dahlia, one Asiatic lily. From grocery store.
  • “Magic wands:” these little batons are filled with water and glitter and were a big hit with both kids. Elias was mesmerized by the floatie sparkly things. They did necesitate a few gentle reminders not to hit each other for chrissake. From discount store.
  • Stuffed Pokemon toys Eevie and Flareon: I found these toys, which looked brand new, at a thrift store. Technically they got one each, but Isobel has coopted both of them. I don’t see her able to do this for much longer.
  • My Little Pony Figurine Miss Cheeralie: Also from the thrift store, and looking like new. Isobel didn’t already have this one.
  • Pokeballs: Thrift store score. Miranda’s Thirft Shop often has great Pokemon stuff.
  • Cool Balls: These bouncy balls are also filled with liquid and glitter, and when you hit them hard enough, they flash with colored lights. They are a bit hard to see, but they are the orange and bright pink balls in Elias’ chicken basket, among the eggs. Both kids love them and as an added bonus I accidentally said, “Isobel, look at your brother’s cool balls!” when they were going through their basket. Discount store purchase.
  • Peeps: I shouldn’t have bothered. My mom always put Peeps in our baskets every year. Isobel’s newfound extreme pickiness has prevented her from even trying them. They are probably still in our pantry, turning into festive pink stone. Grocery store purchase.
  • Stickers: Every occasion deserves stickers. Discount store purchase.
  • Psyduck: One of my favorite Pokemon. Thrift store purchase.
  • Avocado: Elias missed out on a lot of Easter goodies compared to his sister, so I tucked an avocado in there for him. Grocery store purchase.

Thrifty Giving: Darth Vader

Thrifty Giving is a reoccurring column dedicated to thrift store and second-hand shopping for gift-giving, proving that fantastic gifts don’t have to come with a high price tag or even be brand new. 

Today’s post is a bit of a flashback to when I was much healthier physically but not so healthy that I wasn’t behind the times in getting posts written. We’re time traveling all the way back to November for our good buddy Kingston’s birthday. His first and true love will probably always be boats and pirate ships, but occasionally he branches out and adores things like Lego, Minecraft, and Star Wars. He has shared his love of Darth Vader (Isobel is convinced he’s called Dark Bader) with us, and remembering I saw a cool-looking Star Wars encyclopedia at a local thrift store, I popped by to see if it was still there to be picked up for King King’s birthday. Looking back this seems like a million years ago because since this trip in November I think I’ve been to a thrift store twice, which, if you know me, is nothing. I look forward to being well enough to thrift regularly again.

I didn’t find the cool Star Wars book sadly, but the trip was hardly a waste. I found this amazing Darth Vader two-part mask helmet that included a voice modulator that made a variety of sounds, such as DV’s signature air-whoosh for breathing, voice distorter and more. It needed nothing more than a touch of cleaning and some batteries. The Dark Lord must have a butler who follows him around with a shamwow to buff out all the inevitable fingerprints and dust his outfit attracts. It was in great shape.

Isobel wanted to try it on but was intimidated by the mask. She insisted on wearing on the “hair.”

The orange square is actually the price tag that I cleaned off before giving it to K. I should have taken it off for the pics but oh well. I think it was ten dollars, and I consider that money well spent.

I found him some Minecraft pixel sunglasses, too, because I wasn’t sure if I’d find anything at the thrifts. I picked those up online–Think Geek, probably.

Fortunately Kingston got over any mask misgivings pretty quickly.

You can see the mic for voice modulating in the pic above.

The buttons on the front activated the various Darth-sounds. Thanks to Anthony for being such a willing model!

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