When Easter Baskets aren’t Easter Baskets

resurrection day ideas

The last few years I’ve tried to celebrate all the egg-bunny-basket stuff of Easter on the first day of Spring. This year I was out of town and never got around to having a Spring Party. So, I decided to do something different with our “Easter Baskets”. I’ve seen this a few places and tried to adapt them for us. We did this yesterday to help kick off our Resurrection Day celebrations.


1. Rocks

easter basket alternative

First the kids went outside and collected rocks in their Easter Baskets. They definitely thought this was weird. When we came inside we laid out all our rocks and I read Ezekiel 36:26 and talked about how when we sin, it’s like big rocks in our heart! Then we talked about sins we struggle with (whining, complaining, being selfish, etc.) and I wrote them with a Sharpie on the rocks.

2.  Red Cloth

Then we brought out a piece of red cloth (it was really Lydia’s Snow White cape) and talked about how Jesus died on the cross and shed his red blood for all our stony rocky sins. Then we laid the cape over the baskets.

3. Prayer

We joined hands and I prayed that God would remind us of His sacrifice and that His blood can take away all of our sins. I had the kids repeat me. And it was sweet!

kids easter basket

When their Daddy got home, we told him all about our rock hunt, the sin rocks and the robe. Then we ran downstairs to show him the baskets. But when we got downstairs, a new basket greeted them! A basket with Jesus’ name on it—and full of THEIR ROCKS. Their baskets were still covered with the red cloth and when they pulled it off they were greeted with GIFTS to help them grow in the Lord and to remind them of His great gift to them…

4. Necklace

resurrection day

I got Lydia a pretty pink cross necklace. She loves jewelry and since we’ve been talking about the cross so much, I think it will be a constant reminder of the story. I love Katie’s idea of giving jewelry on Easter (scroll down, it’s at the bottom!)

5. Benjamin’s Box

easter books

Leigh posted about this story last year and I’ve always wanted it. We read it last night and the kids were mesmerized by it! It was really very good! And can easily be coupled with Resurrection Eggs if you want.

6. Adventures in Odyssey

easter basket gifts

I bought the first album of Adventures in Odyssey for Lydia a few years ago. She loves listening to Odyssey and I have to admit–I love it, too. I think the themes may be the tiniest bit too old for her (school themes, peer pressure, etc.). But I want to collect them all so that when she is the target age, we’ll have lots to choose from!

7. Veggie Tales Garden

easter gifts

I saw these on facebook the other day and knew I wanted to get them for the kids. They LOVE planting anything! I told them it was a reminder to plant God’s Words in their hearts and to grow in Him. (They are available at Home Depot and Kmart—but my Home Depot didn’t have them!)

8. Psalty

easter basket gifts

I bought the kids Psalty #8 which is a baseball theme. Since my husband is a big Braves fan the kids will love this one!

9.The Jesus Movie: Read and Share DVD Bible

easter basket gifts

I’ve seen a few good reviews on this book and wanted to check it out. But when I saw that Family Christian Stores has it for FIVE BUCKS this week, I knew I had to get it. This is a full-length movie about the death and resurrection of Jesus.

10. Larry Watch

easter basket gifts

Asa wanted a watch. This one is Larry. I couldn’t resist! 🙂

So, that’s how we did our “Easter” baskets! I liked it! It was fun and from the look on Lydia’s face, they seemed to feel the significance of it. Oh, and don’t worry, I’ve still got a chocolate lamb on the way for both of them. (OK, and one for me, too!)

 See our 2014 unEaster baskets2013 unEaster baskets & more fun unEaster gifts!




  1. LOVE these, Amanda. Love how you continue to impress their hearts and OUR hearts in the process. =)

  2. Mia Carey says:

    I LOVE these ideas!!!!!!!!!!
    THANKS for SHARING!!!!

  3. I remember that last year I had such a hard time finding religious things for my little one’s first Easter basket! Thanks for the great ideas for this year. (found you on Oh Amanda!)

  4. Just popped over from top ten tuesaday.
    I love this idea, especially putting the rocks in Jesus’ basket. Very cleverly done and thougth provoking as well 🙂

  5. I love love love this idea. We’re (and by we I mean my husband) digging post holes for a fence expansion and found large rocks. Now we have something to do with them! I also love the necklace idea. I’m thinking I may pass on some of mine to my girls.

  6. I remember you commented http://devouringhisword.blogspot.com/2011/04/easter-bunny-vs-jesus-jesus-is-winning.html about trying out the Jesus Movie, too. Since ours won’t get opened until Sunday, I’m curious to know how you liked it. Is it as good as it looks? Will we love it?

    • We haven’t watched it yet–I’m hoping to watch it tomorrow. I will let you know!!

    • We watched the Jesus Movie today. I really liked it! It was kinda slow (like all Jesus movies) but still had a good thread of a plot…I mean, they explained the story well. Like why Herod would want to kill baby Jesus and why Jesus asked Peter 3x if he loved him. They gave a little “commentary” on it.

      It was NOT scary and they didn’t show the crucifixion—they showed Jesus with bruises/scratches on him, they showed the soldiers punching him but it was from a very far distance and they showed the crosses from a distance.

      I actually enjoyed it and some of it got ME thinking about what it must have been like for the disciples. It was kinda long–over an hour. So, Asa (2.5) kept running around and jumping on my head. I feel like we talked the entire way thru the movie! 🙂

      There were a few little jokes here and there–a funny little bunny pair make appearances all thru the movie. The kids liked them.

      So, my recommendation: It is appropriate for any age. It’s a great way for kids’ to see the WHOLE of Jesus’ life. And it was Biblicaly sound (as far as *I* could tell!)

      • Thanks for the (p)review! Sounds like it’s going to be a winner at our house, too.

        And I know what you mean: those Read & Share dvd’s can be a little slow… but I think that’s part of the draw for the younger ones. Such a nice change from the overwhelming bombardment of most entertainment.

  7. I love how you did it! Love the idea of putting the rocks in Jesus’ basket. we definitely talk about sin being Gone and what is left in our baskets are blessings..but I love the picture of jesus’ basket carrying the rocks now. LOVE it!

    • After we talked about it w/the kids a little bit Lydia said, “Now Jesus has all our sins!”. And I said, “Well, not really. He did take them but He conquered them and basically threw them away.” So I told her we could throw all the rocks away on Good Friday! (Hopefully I’ll remember to do that!)

      Thanks for the inspiration!

  8. This is one of the best ideas I have seen for young children! Thank you for sharing. Also, thank you for the tip on The Jesus movie.

  9. These are the coolest Easter basket ideas EVER!

  10. This is an awesome post! I love it! Your kids are SO blessed to have a mommy who teaches them in such creative ways!

  11. What a wonderful idea! Love it!

  12. as always amanda you have provided a lovely way to weave the love of jesus into the norms of daily living. i love it. this is great!!!!

  13. LIZA MARTIN says:

    im not sure if you have covered this somewhere but what do you feel is an age appropriate way to tell the story of easter? i love the idea of the rocks, red cloth ect… but not sure if talking about death and blood is too much? thanks!!

  14. Stacia Jahnke says:

    Amanda, thank you so much for sharing this awesome way of teaching our young ones the true meaning of Easter. I’m a Children’s Pastor and after reading this post, I decided to use it an object lesson along with our annual Egg Hunt. We did the rocks and the red cloth but then we put white cotton balls on top of the cloth to symbolize being made ‘white as snow’ and therefore making room in our hearts for all the good things God gives us..then we hunted for eggs (good things) and put them on top of the cotton balls. The kids LOVED it and I loved that it was more than ‘just an egg hunt’!! Thanks again!!

    • Stacia! This is such an encouragement to me! You know I was a Children’s Pastor before I had kids. So, I love knowing that I kinda helped a big group of kids this year! 🙂

  15. These ideas are awesome. Way to refocus all the craziness into the important. First time here, and love what you are doing.

  16. We do still do Easter baskets (gotta have candy!) but we’ve been putting Christian gifts in too, like new Bibles, prayer journals, Christian books, etc. Our Easter bunny loves God too!

  17. What did you do with the rocks after they were in the Jesus basket?


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  2. […] – Easter Basket Alternatives (Impress Your Kids – very cool idea I may steal for next year) […]

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  5. […] One activity that I did last Easter to make Jesus sacrifice and the concept of redemption more personal involved their Easter baskets. I wanted to give them Easter baskets but I didn’t want them to be from an oversized bunny. I saw this idea online (turns out it’s from my new bloggy friend Amanda at Impress Your Kids). Here is her link: Easter Basket Alternative. […]

  6. […] Un-Easter Baskets from Impress Your Kids Amanda shares how her family use their Easter baskets to reinforce the resurrection story […]

  7. […] also incorporated Oh Amanda’s Un-Easter Baskets. These are a great alternative to the Easter basket and have so much more meaning. You should […]

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