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A new Easter outfit was a spring tradition when I was growing up - and a huge treat. Since I was the only girl in the family, the shopping trip was a serious ceremony.
Mom and I would go to a real department store, instead of a discount place, and I would try on some eighty or ninety dresses, most trimmed with ruffles or daisies, but all looking about the same. Finally, we would decide on one.
Then we bought new black patent leather shoes, white socks trimmed in lace, a new purse and an Easter bonnet. The hat was an especially important choice, because I would have to wear it to church every Sunday until the weather grew cold. A true Easter bonnet always had a ribbon and maybe a daisy on the brim.
Now, I had the complete outfit. On Easter Sunday I would wear my new hat, new shoes, new dress - and because this was St. Louis - my old winter coat.
No matter how late Easter came, no matter how many warm days we had in February and March, on Easter Sunday the temperature would drop at least thirty degrees. My new outfit would be hidden under a dark coat with one button hanging by a single thread.
Next Sunday would be bright and sunny and I could wear my outfit again. But it wasn't new any more.
An Easter outfit should be worn on Easter Sunday.
(The opinions expressed are not necessarily those of St. Louis Public Radio.)
Elaine Viets is a freelance writer.