Crafts, Easter, Nature Play, Spring

Virvon Varvon

Each spring, Finnish children dress up as witches on Palm Sunday (or Easter Saturday, depending on the region) carrying these beautifully decorated pussywillow branches, which they exchange for treats from neighbors and friends.

Our oldest child was born in Finland, and we try to hold on to as much from his birthplace as we can, even though we don’t live there any longer. We aren’t Finnish, but the country, language and people are very dear to our hearts. This is one of my favorite Finnish traditions, and we are excited to distribute these branches we decorated to the doorsteps of our neighbors with written explanations of this special tradition attached. We are all in need of warm wishes for good health during this time, after all, even if they are wished from a distance.

When children come to exchange their branches for treats, they say:

VIRVON VARVON

TUOREEKS TERVEEKS

TULEVAKS VUODEKS

VITSA SULLE

PALKKA MULLE

“I am whisking

For you to stay young and healthy

For the following year

Here’s a twig for you

And a reward for me”

Materials

  • Young pussywillow branches
  • Hot glue gun
  • Pipe cleaners, silk paper, candy wrappers, pom poms, feathers, anything goes!

Instructions

Have your child dictate where they would like you to hot glue materials to the branches. I was comfortable dotting the hot glue onto our branches and letting Mr. 3.5 stick materials to the branches himself.

Have fun!

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