Maybe I’m neurotic, but I’m prone to overthinking things – first trying to get away with the absolute minimum like it’s a contest, then panicking at the last second and overdoing it until I’m a stressed out mess. Life runs a lot smoother when I approach any out of the ordinary event from the perspective of “what is the magic minimum that will make this feel like x” where x is a holiday or special occasion. For example, x for an Easter basket may be a yarn wrapped bowl filled with fancy foiled chocolate eggs or Jordan almonds so that it resembles a nest, waiting at my place at the table. Even better if my Magic Minimum can be prepared well in advance and sit in brown paper in the attic in an emergency holiday kit, but few things reduce that far and that’s a topic for an advanced post.
The trick with the Magic Minimum is that it must be accomplishable at a moment’s notice with readily available, cheap materials. The easier done, the better. There’s nothing worse than waking up on some lesser holiday and realizing that I’ve done nothing to mark an occasion.
And then you do something that isn’t the minimum. Put a violet picked from the hedge in that little Easter nest or a little bird of some kind on the “eggs.” I guess that’s the magic part of the equation.
Don’t be too rigid, while magic minimums do become traditions, there’s no reason not to put the candy eggs in a teacup if it seems right one year.