Sign In | Create an Account | Welcome, . My Account | Logout | Subscribe | Submit News | Contact Us | All Access E-Edition | Home RSS

Peter Cottontail hops through the rainbow of Easter salvation

March 23, 2008
By SANDY MICKELSON, Messenger staff writer
Easter rocks.

First, you’re celebrating the greatest miracle ever — EVER — to happen, with Jesus rising from the dead. It’s the happiest celebration in the Christian church.

For children, there’s the added excitement of the Peter Cottontail hopping down the bunny trail. Hippity, hoppity, Easter’s here and ol’ Peter knows what puts the jump in children’s legs. Sugar. Chocolate rabbits, jelly beans, nougat eggs — there’s enough high-adrenaline push in one Easter basket for six months of animation.

That’s likely why Easter and Halloween are approximately six months apart on the calendar.

Today for the first time in forever, I helped Peter with his rounds and made an Easter nest for Cadbury eggs. But I had a big chocolate rabbit and a chocolate-and-peanut butter egg, too. Dana is home, so I needed this throwback to her childhood. It’s anybody’s guess whether I took the time to hide eggs around the house for a hunt.

I thought about it, but I’m a morning sleeper and to get up early enough to have an egg hunt before going to church would be tough. And Walt’s laid down the law — we’re not sliding into our front-of-the-church pew just as the bell stops ringing. He likes to be early; I’ve learned to live on deadline, and early just takes time away from something else that needs to be done. Oh, such a problem to solve.

Maybe I’ll buy Dana a pair of white stockings with little frills at the end of the turndown because Peter’s brought her a lot of stockings through the years.

Still, she and I have changed positions in life. When Peter brought her stockings on Easter, she was much too young to pick a fight about it and didn’t know who to fight with anyway. I didn’t lose out on strength and determination until maybe 10 years ago. Now she’s learned the intricacies of the Easter bunny’s job, and should frilly stockings show up, she could hurt me and there’d be nothing I could do about it.

Back then, she wanted candy, not stockings. And I always liked the years when Mr. Cottontail brought her black jelly beans. Lots of them. She didn’t like black jelly beans so much.

Because Dana’s home, my nieces and their families are coming to my sister’s house for Easter. They came up last weekend so one of the husbands could clean up my computer.

He deleted 1,222 cookies and about that many of something else that wasn’t needed. As hard as it was to get the cleanup done, I’ve half a notion never to use the computer again, but I love e-mail too much to give up completely.

Right after our cleaning episode, I got the following e-mail on Noah’s Ark. I know it has nothing to do with Easter, but it certainly makes sense.

‘‘Everything I need to know, I learned from Noah’s Ark.

1: Don’t miss the boat.

2: Remember that we are all in the same boat.

3: Plan ahead. It wasn’t raining when Noah built the Ark.

4: Stay fit. When you’re 60 years old, someone may ask you to do something really big.

5: Don’t listen to critics; get on with the job that needs to be done.

6: Build your future on high ground.

7: For safety, travel in pairs.

8: Speed isn’t always an advantage. The snails were on board with the cheetahs.

9: When you’re stressed, float awhile.

10: Remember, the Ark was built by amateurs; the Titanic by professionals.

11: No matter the storm, when you are with God, there’s always a rainbow waiting ”

Easter is its own rainbow.

Even if your family isn’t home with you or you home with them, know you can always be part of the larger family who celebrates the resurrection.

That really is the rainbow of life.

So long friends until the next time when we’re together.

Contact Sandy Mickelson at (515) 573-2141 or

Fact Box

On the earliness of Easter:
June Logue in Burnside got an e-mail from her sister, who got the e-mail from — it goes back and back and back, but no one really knows where something starts. This information on Easter, however, can be found at Keep in mind, this is one woman’s blog, and although the information seems plausible, it’s nearly impossible to know where she gleaned it. Anyway:
Easter is always the first Sunday after the first full moon after the Spring Equinox (which was March 20 — Thursday. This dating of Easter is based on the lunar calendar that Hebrew people used to identify passover, which is why it moves around on our Roman calendar.
This year is the earliest Easter any of us will ever see the rest of our lives. Only the most elderly of our population — those 95 years and older — have ever seen it this early, and none of us have ever, or will ever, see it a day earlier.
The next time Easter will be as early as March 23 will be the year 2228 — 220 years from now. The last time it was this early was 1913, so anyone 95 or older would have been around for that.
The next time Easter will be a day earlier, March 22, will be in the year 2285 — 277 years from now. The last time it was on March 22 was 1818, so no one alive today has or will ever see it any earlier than this year.



I am looking for: