Ever Since I was a girl I have been fascinated with Russia. As I am an American with Sicilian roots it confounded family members that I would be so interested in Russia. My interest may have something to do with the fact that I grew up during the cold war era. The USSR was always a topic of conversation or in the news. Of course, there were the romanticized stories about Anastasia as well. And, what girl didn’t know the names Nadia Comaneci or Olga Korbut? (While not Russian both gymnasts came from soviet bloc countries; Romania and Belarus.)
I grew to love the Matryoshka dolls, the art of Evgenia Antipova, Faberge eggs and hand decorated Russian Easter eggs. And, when I had children of my own I found a children’s author that I just adore, Patricia Polacco. I fell in love with her artwork and her stories.
One of my favorite Patricia Polacco books is called Rechenka’s Eggs. The story is about Babushka who is known for her beautiful painted Easter eggs. She spends the winter months preparing the eggs for the Easter Festival in Moscow. On one such winter day Babushka comes by an injured goose who she calls Rechenka. Babushka takes in Rechenka and nurses her back to health. During their time together Rechenka accidently ruins Babushka’s beautiful eggs when she spills paint on them. Babushka is disappointed that she will not be able to go to the festival. However, Rechenka soon gives Babushka a beautifully painted egg and does so each morning leading up to the festival. This is a heartwarming story of friendship and the pictures are a visual delight.
If you’d rather eat an egg than decorate one try an egg cooked in the easiest way possible: boiled. As an egg enthusiast I love them in any form, but my favorite is eating an egg after being prepared in this most basic manner.