When I was little, an Easter morning brunch in a downtown Chicago hotel was mandatory. My mother often made matching Easter dresses for my sister and me — sometimes for herself, too. My favorite Easter dress was ankle-length lavender with a wide yellow grosgrain sash. I loved wearing full-length dresses, they made me feel very formal and important.
SueG was masterful when it came to Easter dinner, cooking up a simple but lavish feast such as roasted ham with popovers and asparagus with Hollandaise, garnished with lemon, laid out on a beautiful table complete with flowers. Or, if ham was too expected, maybe prime rib with Yorkshire pudding and asparagus (always asparagus for Easter, that was a requirement). I can’t remember much about Easter dessert. Perhaps that would be reserved for guests to bring.
In the morning before we departed for brunch, my sister and I would run around the downstairs finding jelly beans (never Easter eggs) our father hid for us. He was excellent at the job, often finding such cunning hiding places that we would discover them years later. My favorites were the black ones and a then-new variety, in bright turquoise (though I can’t remember what flavor they would have been–spearmint?). SueG and I both had an appreciation for [cough] — addiction to — jellybeans. We would eat so many that we would get sick to our stomachs. We both loved the spiced ones. I love them slightly stale and chewy, the bigger ones as opposed to JellyBellys [popcorn-flavored jellybeans — shudder]. I have mostly put aside jellybeans now because I well remember how bad is the aftermath.
Easter was always a nice day, usually with just the four of us. I suppose we must have eaten with my grandmother in Winnetka when we lived in Illinois, but the memories are dim.