Why my children won't be getting eggs from the Easter Bunny

Photo: Shutterstock
Photo: Shutterstock 

My children won't be getting chocolate from the Easter Bunny this year.

I know, I know, I'm the meanest mum in the world. Tell me something I haven't already heard from my five-year-old most days before breakfast.

But I'm starting a new Easter tradition this year, and it involves zero chocolate.

I came to the decision a few weeks ago, when I realised there is a phenomenon that goes on in the weeks before Easter, and it results in a catastrophic chocolate overdose.

It all begins on 2 January. This is when supermarkets now think it's appropriate to stack their shelves with hot cross buns and Cadbury Crème eggs. Why do they think it's appropriate? Because we buy them. Or someone does. And whoever that person is, they start giving them to my children.

My kids have been wolfing down holy fruit buns and tiny chocolate eggs at my mother's house for the past few months. They love them, but they have no reason to associate them with Easter. They just think they're a summer/autumn food, like figs or melons.

Then the eggs started at school. One little girl brought in an Easter egg for everyone in my daughter's class three weeks ago, and from there the flood gates opened. With around 25 kids in each of my children's classes, we have been inundated with chocolate of questionable quality (so nothing for Mum to steal – boo!).

We can't tell our kids they can't have these treats; they're gifts. That would be cruel. So we allow them, and something that's supposed to be a sometimes food suddenly becomes a daily occurrence for weeks on end.

I try to do my bit by stealing their treats from the fridge while they're sleeping, but I'm only one woman. I can't eat everything.

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When Easter Sunday finally arrives, my kids will be at their dad's place, and will undoubtedly be enjoying chocolate for breakfast, lunch and dinner. It should be the culmination of what has now become a three-month-long festival of chocolate, but that won't be the end of it.

Friends and relatives will bring chocolate when they visit, and my kids will be harbouring their leftovers, hoping to outlast their siblings so they can be the one to show off just how much they're enjoying those final few eggs.

I'll be lucky if I can get rid of all the chocolate by the winter holidays.

Where does it all stop? The chocolate overload has crossed over from "treat" status into something that is expected, and it's too much.

From when eggs go on sale to the day my kids can make them last to, we're looking down the barrel of almost six months of chocolate "treats". But they're no longer treats, they've become a staple.

So this year is the year I say no to Easter chocolate. Instead, I will be giving my children gifts that have nothing to do with gorging on sweets.

Each child will have a beautifully wrapped parcel waiting for them when they come home, containing fresh winter pyjamas and a new book. And I will have a new game waiting for us all to play together, so we've got something fun to do over the holidays.

Because I'd like Easter in my house to be about spending time together, creating memories and enjoying some relaxed time in each other's company, not about overeating until we feel ill.

That's what Christmas is for.