As the first “normal” Easter since the start of the pandemic, it feels good to get back to some of the usual holiday traditions.
For many, this means time spend with family going to church service, taking the kids to Easter egg hunts, and having a traditional Easter dinner with family and friends.
While we are now able to do all these things without having to worry about social distancing, supply issues and costs are certainly on everyone’s mind. With the price of food rising every week, and shortages of raw food materials to make many of the products, there are plenty of people who are still unable to celebrate as they would normally.
According to an article by USA Today (4/6/22) using USDA data, the average weekly price for large eggs is 44% higher now than this time last year, and up 11.4% in February from a year earlier, according to the latest Consumer Price Index data published in March.
And, from the New York Post (4/11/22), their survey of seasonal candies and sweets shows “the average cost of an Easter basket has skyrocketed to $61.83, up from $50.46 in the pre-pandemic spring of 2019. That’s an increase of 22.5%, more than double the already historic 9% percent inflation rate in the same period.”
Locally, prices were up, too. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports in February 2022 that:
- The cost of meat items, as well as eggs, is now up 21.3% from 2021.
- Fresh fruits and vegetables are up 11.4%.
- Dinner rolls and other bakery items increased 6.3%
- Dairy like milk and butter cost 7.3% more than they did a year ago.
What are some ways to combat these price issues and still enjoy the holiday? Here are five ways you can still have a great Easter without breaking the bank or worrying about how to afford it:
- Have fun at all the free events put on by local communities and area churches. While there are many activities leading up to Easter Sunday in Pierce County, check out https://www.southsoundtalk.com/2022/03/16/2022-easter-egg-hunts-and-activities-in-pierce-county/ for fun things to do Easter weekend.
- Visit a dollar store for some great finds. Most of these types of stores carry baskets, little toys, and holiday candy, and holiday cards are super cheap! It’s especially great for parents of younger children who still love stuffed toys and less expensive toy items.
- Handmaking or crafting your own Easter gifts and baskets is a great way to save some money. Sewing your own stuffed toys; creating hand-stamped cards, fun printables or coloring sheets both for kids and adults; making your own candy in bulk; hand making paper picture frames or wearable pins, and painting t-shirts are all great ways to celebrate. Visit https://www.holidaysmart.com/articles/20-diy-easter-gifts or https://www.diys.com/easy-easter-crafts/ for some extra cute and easy ideas!
- Remember the true meaning of the holiday. It’s not just about the Easter bunny, candy, and gifts, but about getting together with family and friends to celebrate new beginnings, hope, renewal, and the resurrection of Jesus Christ after dying on the cross for us. Starting Easter Sunday with a thoughtful church service is the top way to celebrate and honor the sacrifice he made and remind us of what the holiday is really all about.
- Use community services, like the our Eloise’s Cooking Pot Food Bank. We are here to help, especially during the times we have seen over the last two years. When inflation is hurting your budget and ability to provide food for yourself and your family, regardless of whether it is a holiday or not, you can come in for many of the basic food necessities needed for the Easter meal – or any meal! The food bank offers fresh produce, dairy items like eggs, butter, and milk, and meat items. Use such resources where and when you can to help reduce some of the pain at the grocery store and still celebrate.