A single line of quail crossed Annie’s path just as she turned into the farmer’s market. Simultaneously they began to run as they saw her approaching.

She smiled at them while pulling a shopping list out of her backpack.

Just as she started to review it, she noticed a crowd around a new vendor; Healthy Easter Baskets read the sign, “how timely,” she thought and walked over to have a look.

There were several baskets on display; people asked if they could buy them.

“Hello everyone, welcome to our booth. We have plenty of products, so we should be able to help you create a basket. These baskets are for display only and not for sale. We created them to help give you an idea of what is here to purchase. Each earth-friendly basket is made of bamboo and filled with recycled shredded paper. My name is Candy, but please don’t hold it against me,” she laughed. “We have products for all ages, including adults. And we do not sell anything that contains sugar.”

The crowd cheered.

Annie introduced herself when it was her turn, “I am impressed with your booth and happy to meet you, Candy. My husband and I are big proponents of a sugar-free lifestyle. Every Halloween, we host a party for children that does not include sugar. We carve pumpkins and have a build-your-favorite pizza table. The number of children attending the party has grown; it’s now twice its original size. At Easter, we host an Easter egg hunt. We want to support parents as they teach their children healthy lifelong habits around sugar. I imagine many parents are thrilled to meet you and see your booth.”

“It sure seems like it. My children were my motivation. When they were  toddlers, I cringed watching people offer them chocolate bunnies and marshmallow chicks. I talked to other parents who felt the same way but were too uncomfortable to speak up, so I decided to create sugar-free baskets and offer them for sale so parents, grandparents, and godparents have an alternative. It’s a shame Easter became a sugar-high holiday. It didn’t start that way.”

“No, it didn’t,” said Annie. “The first Easter baskets were designed to carry home-grown food to church for a blessing to give thanks for a successful harvest. Candy was eventually introduced in the basket to acknowledge the giving up of sweets during lent. Children received candy in their Easter basket as a reward for abstaining from eating it for 40 days.”

Candy shook her head, “using any food as a reward, especially sugar,  often creates unhealthy cravings as kids get older and can lead to obesity, high blood pressure, and heart disease as adults.”

Annie nodded, “there are tons of ideas on creating healthy easter baskets, but young parents these days seem to run out of time considering all the demands on their schedules. Now you have created a helpful answer. I’m pretty sure your business is going to be very successful. Do you have a healthy solution for all the leftover Easter eggs?

“I sure do,” said Candy. “Check out this recipe, After Easter Chocolate Chip Cookies. It uses maple syrup as a sweetener.”

“I will look it up when I get home and spread the word about your business. I see several items for my husband’s sugar-free Easter basket,” said Annie. “thank you for creating your business. Basile Hume said the great gift of Easter is hope. I hope you keep going, and your business keeps growing and growing.”


Annie and LJ are a fictional couple. Their storyline promotes healthy eating and earth-friendly practices.


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