I had often wondered how the date of Easter was worked out and knew it had something to do with the lunar cycles, so I finally googled it and found this:
Prior to A.D. 325, Easter was variously celebrated on different days of the week, including Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. In that year, the Council of Nicaea was convened by emperor Constantine. It issued the Easter Rule which states that Easter shall be celebrated on the first Sunday that occurs after the first full moon on or after the vernal equinox. However, a caveat must be introduced here. The "full moon" in the rule is the ecclesiastical full moon, which is defined as the fourteenth day of a tabular lunation, where day 1 corresponds to the ecclesiastical New Moon. It does not always occur on the same date as the astronomical full moon. The ecclesiastical "vernal equinox" is always on March 21. Therefore, Easter must be celebrated on a Sunday between the dates of March 22 and April 25. (http://wilstar.com/holidays/easter.htm)
So now you all know too .. if you didn't already!
My dad always told me that in the northern hemisphere, specifically England, the vernal equinox is regarded as the first day of spring. He said he had only ever remembered that fact from school because the 21st of March just happened to be his birthday!
Speaking of my dad, last Friday would have been his 62nd birthday. I still can't believe that it's been almost 8 years since he died. He was a really wonderful human being and an even better father. I have so much to thank him for and continue to do so, even though he's not physically here with me. He was always there for us, not necessarily in the way we wanted (grounded for life rings a few bells), but now that I'm a parent myself, I can understand almost everything he went through. I am so grateful he chose Mum and I to spend his life with and that he gave me my little sister who is so like him at times, it's scary.
I know he wasn't perfect .. no-one ever is .. but everything he did came from love and wanting to help us grow to make the right decisions for ourselves. He certainly didn't agree with some of them, but he was able to admit when he was wrong and we were right. Not straight away mind you .. it often took a while, but it would happen. In those cases when we were wrong and he was right, I don't think I ever heard him say "I told you so" or "it serves you right". He would just be there on the sidelines waiting to help if we wanted or needed him to.
I really miss just talking to him. We could talk about almost anything. I am very much like him in that I can converse on just about any topic without appearing a fool, but he had the whole thing down pat. He could walk into any room and fit right in, whether it was high society or blue collar. I always admired him for that and his ability to put people at ease.
I'm not 100% sure in what I believe happens to us after we die, but I like to think that wherever he's ended up, be it heaven or as sub-atomic particles floating in the ether, that he's watching over us and that he's proud of himself and the example he set us.
I miss you so much Dad and so do your boys. Love you.