So I’m going to try to embrace Lent this year…well, more than I usually do at least. It’s always hard for me to figure out what to do to commemorate the season because I usually end up forgetting about it/failing. I didn’t really give anything up for the last two years because I was pregnant for one & breastfeeding during the other and those two things alone require a lot of sacrifice! I am not giving anything up this year, either, but instead I’m trying to do positive things that will hopefully have a longer impact on my life than giving up sweets (especially because I love to bake and baking is my stress relief, so giving up sweets would probably lead to me losing my sanity…).
Brian and I have been really bad about making it to Mass lately and I want to make a point to go more. We use Audrey as an excuse sometimes (and hey, sometimes she is a valid excuse!) but I think we can probably make more effort. The Mass times at the two closest churches always conflict with naptime, so it’s a challenge. We started looking into other churches and there are some more promising times offered so hopefully we like those churches. It becomes REALLY challenging to go to Mass when Brian is working and I have Audrey by myself (which is 2-3 weekends out of the month). It is nearly impossible to keep her quiet & entertained and to still be able to pay enough attention get something out of the Mass. At least if all three of us go, one of us can get something out of it! Anyway, we will be trying to minimize those excuses.
Another thing that I’m going to do on an individual level is take some time each night to reflect and journal. The journaling is optional, the reflecting is not. My Confirmation sponsor gave me Oswald Chamber’s “My Utmost for His Highest” which is a daily devotional book, and I’ve never really gotten through a lot of it, but that’s about to change! I figure that for me, doing something like this is going to be a lot more beneficial than giving something up.
Lastly, we are going to attempt a swear jar. We attempted it last year, but that failed miserably since we were in the midst of a cross-country move (see, more excuses!). This year, we’re taking Lent as an opportunity to clean up our language, especially since Miss Audrey is the world’s greatest mimic! We’ll contribute all of our money to Catholic Relief Services at the end of Lent. One reason I think we failed last year is that we never had enough change on hand to put in our jar. I think that maybe this year we’ll just keep a weekly tally and contribute money at the end of every week rather than in that moment.
I am pretty determined to make this Lent more meaningful than Lents in the past, so hopefully I can follow through!