Happy Easter! What a lovely celebration we had this year at my in-laws' country club after church followed by a relaxing and festive day at their home. Even the snow didn’t stop me from pulling out my spring polka dots and Easter hat.
But when I was pouring over friends' social media pictures at the end of the day, I couldn’t help reminiscing about when I last wore polka dots and pearls: the 2017 White House Easter Egg Roll! If you haven’t heard of this annual Easter Monday tradition, you must add it to your bucket list. What a treat for families! The tickets are completely free and distributed on a lottery system with sign-ups in February, but if you know someone on staff, you can usually get around the lottery and snag a spot (thanks Mr. O&O!).
Aside from tickets, the only other obstacle is the entry line. Our experience started out a little rainy, which seemed to deter more people than previous years, so we only waited about an hour from arrival to stepping on the South Lawn. Historically, however, lines have snaked blocks and people have waited several hours. Once you get inside, the lines are pretty minimal and thankfully they pass out snacks and drinks while waiting in the initial line, but I’d recommend bringing an iPad or something similar to entertain the kiddos.
The Presidential Tennis Court is one of the first things you pass entering the South Lawn, so we stopped by and tossed balls around with a crew of Special Olympics athletes. Baby O&O also got to kick a soccer ball to the D.C. United Women’s soccer team at another station, comprising the top sports highlights of the day.
The namesake event is a must-do once you get there. The roll (and the actual egg hunt) are the only other substantial lines we had to stand in once inside, but the wait was 20 min or less, and the line for the egg roll was actually rather enjoyable. We passed by The Beast, enjoyed music by the United States Marine Band (added to the event by Indiana’s own Benjamin Harrison in 1889), and even spied the White House Rose Garden and the Oval Office windows as we waited. Before we knew it, it was our turn. The basic concept is you scoop/roll a hardboiled egg down a lane with a spoon, racing others to the finish line. Baby O&O needed a bit of help but happily played along. It was exhilarating to take part in the 140-year-old tradition!
Countless other activities sprinkle the lawn from live music to arts and crafts, with many photo ops in between. On the way out, every attendee receives a wooden egg keepsake and a goody bag of Easter toys and treats. It was wildly successful and I would highly recommend it to any family!
In honor of kicking Indiana polo season off, I'm bringing back the baby shower series to highlight two fantastic polo-themed showers thrown for me a little over a year ago to celebrate Baby O&O. Because of Mr. O&O’s and my combined love for all things southern and preppy, we decided on a polo theme for Baby O&O’s nursery, which inspired the two hat-wearing showers that came to be. The room has served its purpose well into toddlerhood as Baby O&O now loves pointing out all his "neigh-neighs" before bed.
The first was a small, family shower that started with the most perfect blue and white polo onesie invitations and ended with a matching cake. Everyone got in the spirt and came wearing a hat and dress, with many sets of pearls to boot. The most special part was the old family cradle used to display a gorgeous array of goodies for my little man.
A few months later, a family friend on Mr. O&O’s side also caught wind of the polo nursery theme and put a Ralph Lauren polo spin on her celebration. After discovering an old RL teddy bear fabric, she incorporated this print into everything from the boots and rocking horse welcoming guests to the spiced nuts adorned with horse charms sent home as favors. While the details were jaw dropping, my favorite part of this shower was the game she played during presents: each guest had a mad-lib style questionnaire that they filled out and read part of before their gift was opened. The hostess wrote the personalized story, incorporating many sweet things such as Baby O&O's anticipated career and advice for him as he grows. As the guests read their stories, the hostess collected them and placed them in an album for me to keep. It is so heartwarming to go back and read the stories and see how the imagined Baby O&O holds up against the real deal.
Upholding the legacy set by this painstakingly decorated nursery and fantastic showers, we took Baby O&O to his first match last summer and are gearing up to head out again this year! I hope you’ll join us at Hickory Hall Polo Club this summer.
I'm a Virginia-native uprooted to Indianapolis to marry my husband and start our sweet family of 4. As an overdressed editor, I love planning parties and good reads.