Favorite Finds (Easter basket edition)

192.

That's how many Easter baskets I have filled in my life so far.

Over the years, I have simplified their contents, gotten more creative and added more meaning to what goes into the baskets. I didn't just want fillers, I wanted things that fill me, body, mind, and soul.

I'm sure you do too. We all want to bless our families, use our money wisely, and celebrate the death and life season of the Jesus we love, all while keeping our celebration true and sweet and soulful.

I have gathered what I think are my best Easter basket ideas from my 192 baskets just for you. Choose just a few that suit your family, and happy filling!

3 tips for smarter Easter baskets:.

  1. Start with smaller baskets and an empty egg (bam!)
  2. Get creative with simple quality and useful things
  3. Go for meaning (I choose lambs or butterflies over bunnies)

Sweets

It seems no matter what age or dietary restrictions (we have 5 vegans), everyone still wants at least a little bit of candy. Pass the almond M&M's, please. No guilt.

Even with my own deep appreciation for good dark chocolate, I still love some good M & M's for Easter. My favorites are almond and those FAT egg ones that only come out at Eastertime.

Still, in our quest for healthier eating, we have tried adding real fruit leather, cookies, nuts, and choosing dark chocolate over milk chocolate to our Easter baskets. Lately, I have also added our favorite whole food bars - real nutrition, ingredients you can pronounce and delicious. (I promise!)

Thunderbird bars are my current favorite bar for snacking. I like the cashew + fig + carrot bar. The only other ingredients are dates, nutmeg and a touch of Himalayan sea salt. Eat them just because they taste good, but if you need more reasons consider the following: real food, non GMO, no added sugar, soy, dairy, and gluten-free, vegan and Paleo certified - 150 calories crafted in Austin, Texas. So, eat one and feel the bluebonnet love and energy. Woo! (This is not sponsored in any way. I just really love them.)

For Mike and me, and the Whippersnappers once they left for college, I added good local teas or coffee beans. And, don't forget the little treats like gum, mints, lip balm, post-it notes or character band-aids (Yep, no matter what age).

One of our kids had a whole orange Tic-Tac phase that lasted quite a while. Those are probably considered whole food, right?

Books

Always books.

When the Whippersnappers were little, I started tucking a single board book into the basket, then I moved to teen devotionals, and finally hearty collections of thoughtful writing.

Books may cost more than trinkets, though maybe not board books. Even so, good books are timeless, can be available on the bookshelf all year long, and passed between the kids.

These are the ones that will show up for us big kids this year.

Bread and Wine: Readings for Lent and Easter

The Way of Abundance by Ann Voskamp

These will be for the Wonders.

The Easter Egg Story with Nesting Toy

Planting a Rainbow by Lois Elhert

Journals and artsy supplies

Fairly early on, journals, notebooks, and sketchbooks, pens, colored pencils, and washi tape became staples in our Easter baskets. We were always encouraging list-making, writing, doodling, sketching, dreaming and water-coloring. Having these supplies handy meant the kids could create something on a whim.

To me, these never get old even when I do.

Don't forget a card to write a note to your little lamb or to frame for good, cheap art. Trader Joes has the best cards for the money. You can rarely beat 99ยข for a card, and the words you add will be priceless.

Denik journal

Moleskin journal

Leather journal

Washi tape

Toys

Every kid loves toys, even big kids. I landed on wooden toys, nesting dolls, flashcards and little egg crates to hold Resurrection Eggs - we always had fun making our own and we always left one egg empty to remind us of the empty tomb. Even though they wanted all the treats, our kids loved finding the empty egg!

Alphabet Parade Wall Art.
These are oversized and frame-worthy.

Alphabet Watercolor flashcards.
Smaller size (4" x 6") in a muslin bag.

She Reads Truth Lent Cards.
12 beautiful cards for the Lenten Season.

Nesting dolls.
Good for littles and bigs.

Bright paper straws.
Stripes, dots or chevrons, these make sipping super fun! (Again, no matter what age. I use these for sparkling water for myself and when I throw parties.)

Have fun choosing a few of these Easter ideas to make your baskets simple, fun and wholehearted. Remember to fill up with good stuff and leave one empty egg.

I was out on a walk in the piney Oregon woods last week when I suddenly looked up. I snapped this photo to remember just what Lent and Easter are truly all about. We have a rough and risen Savior who left that dark tomb with light pouring in on Resurrection Sunday. Hallelujah!

*Some of the links above are affiliate links which means if you shop directly from here, we both get a sweet deal. You get my curated list of Easter basket soul fillers at no extra charge, and I might get to buy a latte.