The only trouble is, as our children get older, finding colorful plastic eggs in the bushes loses some of its appeal. They can spot them all too quickly (after so many years of practice, they now know exactly where to look). And there’s another little problem: In the Pacific Northwest, it’s often raining on Easter.
But we figured out a work-around. When you’ve got to bring your hunt indoors, or when your savvy tweens need a little more of a challenge, add a scavenger-hunt twist.
You can use plastic eggs with a clue tucked inside, but blown eggs, dyed and numbered, make it a lot more special — especially because the kids get the satisfaction of smashing the eggs open to get the clue.
To blow the innards out of our eggs, we used a special tool that’s available at craft stores like Michael’s. This tool is fantastic because:
1) You won’t pop a blood vessel physically blowing the egg out with your mouth.
2) You can actually use the egg once it’s out of the shell. Sorry, but I don’t want to cook eggs that have been infused with hot breath, even if it’s my own.
You will need:
Egg blowing tool
Egg dye or paint
Clues typed or written on skinny strips of paper
1) Poke a hole in one end of the egg shell with a straight pin. Chip away at the edges of the hole to make it big enough so that the raw egg will be able squeeze out around the needle of the tool. Otherwise, the egg will crack with the pressure.
2) Insert the tool and pump air into the egg while holding it over a bowl. Egg will start pouring out.
3) After removing the raw egg, rinse out the inside.
4) Dry the surface of the egg shells and affix each with a number sticker. (Or if you want the numbers to be a color other than white, dye the eggs a base color, allow to dry, then paste on the stickers.)
5) Dye or paint: If dyeing, use tongs to submerge the eggs (without the egg innards weighing them down, the egg shells want to float). While drying, prop shells upside down to allow the dye inside to drip out. When shells are dry, remove the stickers.
6) Write your clues and keep a master list so you know where each numbered egg is supposed to go. Nothing ruins a scavenger hunt more than out-of-order clues. When writing the clues, remember that they’ll be on a tightly rolled up scroll of paper, so keep them short and sweet. The longer the clue, the fatter the scroll, which is hard to insert through the little hole.
7) Before inserting the clues through the hole, allow the egg shells to dry out overnight or turn a hairdryer on them.
8) Hide the eggs, place the Easter baskets at the final site, and unleash the kids!
Need a recipe to use up all of that raw egg? Try Softly Scrambled Eggs With Chives and Semi-Soft Cheese