Easter-time is a little different in this area of the U.S. We were away last year, spending time with the boys' cousins down in Florida, so I didn't really take in the differences between the UK and US at this time of year. Basically, they boil down to the fact that 'Easter' is not really mentioned in an official sense - instead, we have Spring Recess to look forward to for the boys, but there are no public holidays on either Good Friday or Easter Monday. (I keep having to stop myself referring to the 'Easter holidays', as it would mystify most people or be somehow politically incorrect, but somehow this phrase is ingrained in me after years in the U.K.)
There are various Egg hunts happening in town, but in keeping with the non-religiousness of public schools, and the large Jewish population, the whole thing seems to be slightly rolled in with Passover. The Easter Bunny, meanwhile, seems to have morphed into a kind of second-tier Santa, bringing not necessarily chocolate but general gifts - one mum friend told me her teenager had asked for a new CD from the Bunny.
This week I attended what was dubbed a 'Spring Celebration' in Littleboy 1's classroom. They had an egg hunt and a special snack of matzah (a cracker traditionally eaten at Passover) dipped in melted chocolate. An interesting blend of two religious traditions, I thought - and something that struck me as likely to be uniquely New York. I kind of like that.
Despite the vagueness over Easter, Spring is definitely here now, although the weather continues to veer wildly from warm to freezing cold. Cherry blossom, magnolias and daffodils are out all over town (Potty Mummy, here's a special picture of my flower beds just for you); winter clothes are being stashed away and everyone is asking you where your child is going for summer camp, as the long, hot summer holidays loom ever nearer. Before I know it, it will be May - and the second anniversary of our arrival in the States. It's funny going back and reading about our first impressions of the area, and our househunting experiences - two years on, so many things now seems normal, but I'm also constantly surprised by so many differences.