Happy Easter – Srećan Uskrs – Шрећан ускрс

This afternoon we made traditional Serbian Eastern eggs. It was a special occasion today as the Western Christian Easter and the Orthodox Easter fall on the same day. This happens every so often, the next two occasions will be in 2017 and 2025. We went “old school” and got onion skins from the market and boiled the eggs to get the nice red color. If you look closely, I drew a cross and X.B. on the front egg in wax before putting them in the onion dye. X.B. in Cyrillic means “Hristos Vaskrse” (Christ Has Risen). Serbs say this on Easter and one must reply, Vaistinu Vaskrse! (Of course He has Risen!).

Nadia is boiling the eggs with the onion skins.

We next put on some plastic designs from the company, jaje.rs. They copy designs from Serbian monasteries in the various styles and are very easy to put on the eggs. As you can see below, they are very beautiful. We will do some egg tapping later today and tomorrow, we will complete the Easter celebrations with a chocolate egg hunt.

We are all a bit sad that this will be our last Easter in Serbia, but will definitely pack some more of the jaje.rs monastery designs with us to Japan.




Happy Easter – Srećan Uskrs


Egg Tapping, originally uploaded by bill kralovec.

We enjoyed the traditional Serbian Easter traditions last week during the long weekend. The Orthodox Easter is celebrated a week after the Catholic Easter. Above, is a video of the “egg-tapping” competition. This tradition started in Eastern Europe in the 1300’s and has now spread across the world. The egg is the pagan symbol of the renewal of spring and life. I never saw egg-tapping in Michigan. The champion in the video for this year was Ocean! Her egg didn’t crack. Late in the competition, Aca’s mother Mira gave Ocean a wooden egg, which is against the rules.

We had a second round of egg-tapping with our Romanian friends later in the day. Claudiu was explaining that while breaking the egg, they have the tradition phrase, “Christ Has Risen” which is answered by “Indeed, He has.”

We also liked coloring the eggs in the traditional Serbian method. We dyed the eggs in onion skins and it give it a deep red color. We bought some eggs with writing and Easter designs on them from the market, and when dyed, as you can see, they markings appear lighter. I don’t know what the acronym, XBBB means? It is in the Cyrillic script, and in Latin it would be HVVV. I know the “H” means Hristos (christ), but I don’t know what the three Vs mean. Any help from my Serbian readers? I also used some Easter Egg decorations from the company, http://www.jaje.rs. They have some great designs from based on ornaments from Serbian Medieval churches and monasteries. Very cool!

Easter Sunday “Srećan Uskrs”

Easter Sunday Egg Hunt, originally uploaded by bill kralovec.

We had a nice day around the house yesterday. Nadia and I took the opportunity to do some serious spring cleaning. I stored away all of the winter clothes and organized our basement storage boxes. With a family of five, we have a lot of stuff! We also sorted through drawers, shelves, etc. It is amazing the amount of stuff that piles up during a school year. Nadia did a thorough cleaning of the house.

As you can see from the video above, the kids enjoyed the easter egg hunt. We are not religious but still celebrate the holidays all the same. I started telling the story of the crucifixion of Jesus, but need to re-look at the Biblical accounts to give a proper bedtime story to the kids. We also listened to the storynory.com origin of Easter eggs and the Saxon pagan beliefs where the holiday originates.

The weather continues to be perfect, cool temperatures and blue skies. The neighbors brought colored eggs to our children. Eastern Europeans are really into decorative eggs, which I’ll blog about more later.

As with Christmas, the Serbs exchange phrases when greeting each other on Easter.

хпистос васкрсе (Hristos vaskrse) – Christ resurrected

Ваистину васкрсе (Vaistina vaskrse) – Yes, he truly resurrected (response)

Ocean Finds The Eggs

ISB Easter Picnic


We had a great time Saturday at the annual ISB Easter Picnic. Ocean is shown above with the Easter Bunny and his helper. It was a beautiful day and the volunteers from the PTSA and US Steel did a wonderful job in making it a fantastic and fun event. Despite the economic recession, US Steel still does have a significant presence at the school and it was nice for them to run this event for the kids.

Ollie Does the Obstacle Course