For Easter this year we decided to do something a little different and make our own Easter garden. I have many happy memories from my own childhood of spending hours putting together little gardens complete with ponds, rockeries and freshly picked flowers (that didn't stay fresh for very long). Living where we live in a land of concrete and cement it wasn't going to be easy putting together something so 'natural' so we had to work with what we had, but the result of what we created really surprised me.
To form our 'garden' we resorted to good ole paper mache, paint and tissue paper, adding a natural touch with a few stones and forming our crosses out of sticks.
My original plan was to make it and use it as a centre piece for our table to bring a focus of conversation around to what Easter was about. Yet as it sat there the first day I was surprised to see how the children began interacting with it and playing with it and so we decided to make it more than just an ornament and through the course of holy week, with the help of some little plastic people we acted out the last days of Jesus before his death and then his resurrection.
It brought the story to life in a new way this year. For days later the children could be seen re-acting out the story and all that happened with a few extra characters here and there, with the empty tomb occasionally being used as a car park!