Easter Eggs Are Always Fun!


Decorated eggs have long been a symbol of rebirth and springtime. Here are some ideas to make this year's extra-special!

By FamilyTime

 Children around the world decorate eggs in the spring, as a way to celebrate rebirth and warmer days. In this country, we call these colorful decorations "Easter eggs," and while they are most commonly associated with that holiday, decorating them is something all children love to do, whether their families celebrate Easter or not.

Getting Started
The egg has a pleasing shape that lends itself to numerous creative possibilities.

Hard-cooked eggs are sturdier and easier for children to handle than hollow eggs. Both can be dyed, painted, or drawn on with markers.

At Easter time, supermarkets and other stores sell dying and decorating kits, but you can use ordinary food coloring, too. Squeeze a few drops into a cup of water mixed with 2 to 3 teaspoons of white vinegar. Make sure the water is warmer than the eggs (warm tap water works well).

Whether you use commercial dye or food coloring, leave the egg submerged until it becomes a shade that you like. The longer the egg is in the dye, the darker it will become.

To Hard Cook Eggs
Place the eggs in a single layer in saucepan. Add enough tap water to cover by about an inch. Cover the pan and bring the water to a boil. Immediately remove the pan from the heat and let it stand, covered, for about 15 minutes. Run cold water over the eggs or place them in ice water until completely cooled.

To Make Hollow Eggs
Wash a raw egg in warm water. When dry, use a long, sterilized needle or small metal skewer to prick a small hole in the narrow end. Make a larger hole in the rounder end. Carefully chip away bits of shell around the large whole until it's large enough to accommodate the tip of a turkey baster.

Pierce the yolk with the needle or skewer. Shake the contents from the egg or use the baster to suck it out.

Expel the air from the baster's bulb. Hold the bulb closed between your fingers and insert the tip of the baster into the egg. Release the bulb; it will suck up the yolk and whites.

If you have a hard time, insert the needle again and wiggle it around to break up the membrane and yolk. Rinse the empty shell under cool running water and stand it on end to drain and dry.

Hollow shells are fragile. If you want, glue tissue or wax paper over the holes in the shell.

Decorating Ideas
Paint the egg with undiluted food coloring. Use a clean sponge to sponge-paint the egg with food coloring.

Dye the eggs with layers of color by dipping part of the egg into the dye.

Decorate dry, dyed eggs with stickers. Or, remove stickers after dying to leave a white shape on the egg.

Wrap a rubber band tightly around an egg, dye the egg, let it dry, and then remove the band to see the lines left behind.

Glue faux gems, available at craft stores on the eggs. Add extra glitz with gold and silver paint.

Draw patterns or write names on the eggs with the wax crayons that come with the dye kits or use your own crayons. The wax repels the dye so the pattern will show up.

Dye an egg a light color, let it dry, and then use the crayon or stickers. This way you can have a two-tone, patterned egg.

As a group activity, make egg faces. The first person puts on the eyes, the second adds the nose, and so on. This way, the eggs quickly take on characters of their own. Use markers or affix jiggly eyes, yarn hair, and other things found at craft stores.

Decoupage hollow eggs by first cutting out photos from magazines or greeting cards and gluing them to the shells. Cover the decorated eggs with clear nail polish or clear acrylic coating. These will last for years if carefully tended.