I've always revered Easter as the day commemorating Jesus's resurrection, by far the most significant event for mankind since the Fall (actually, it rather elegantly reverses the ultimate consequences of the Fall).
However, I've never liked the popular imagery associated with Easter: hard-boiled eggs, a magical bunny, and candy.
The eggs and bunny represent fertility, the promise of new life. I completely agree that, in its own way, the resurrection represents the promise of new life. Still, the images seem far too pagan for my liking. The only thing we're missing here for full no-holds-barred pagan imagery is a giant phallus--then again, the Easter Bunny often holds a carrot.
At least Santa Claus is based upon a man, St. Nicholas, who gave gifts to those in need, just as God gave unto us his only begotten Son (John 3:16). The Easter Bunny is based upon an animal that procreates at rates amazing even to those in the NBA.
The candy must be the thing that gets kids into Easter. However, it causes them to get excited about Easter for the wrong reason.
At 6:00 A.M., I will wake up my three children (Mass is at 8 A.M., so we need to get started early). Robbie is too young to get it this year, but the older two will be all jazzed over the Easter baskets.
Our celebration of Christmas has the same problem, but at least it isn't filled with pagan imagery and ugly pastels.
On top of all of this, hard-boiled eggs taste, to me, what I imagine a pile of dung must taste like.
Christmas has eggnog, cookies, and all sorts of goodies.
Easter has food that smells like something that came out of my Uncle Les about an hour after Thanksgiving dinner.
We and our children should be happy on Easter. But it's an ironic happiness. We are saved--yes, that is the big deal. However, we should bow our heads in a bit of shame to know that we are so depraved that an innocent and good man had to suffer and die in order that we might have another chance.
Easter should evoke two emotions: gratefulness and shame.