no meat? I can do it….

English: Ash Wednesday, watercolor, 78 x 113 c...

ashes to ashes

I’m half way through Ash Wednesday. As always, it has a way of sneaking up on me. I should know when the news stations start showing videos of the kids on Bourbon Street going a bit crazy that Fat Tuesday brings Ash Wednesday.

I’m a Catholic but like many of my Catholic friends, not a great Catholic. I like the religion okay but I really like the traditions and not eating meat during Lent is a cool one to follow. Of course, we used to joke the “no meat” thing on Fridays was a way for the apostles (fisherman) to make a living, but I see it as almost Zen-like. I like the idea of giving something up if only for a short while. It’s a challenge to eat something besides chicken every Friday for the next 40 days. And I like fish. And grilled cheese sandwiches. And goat cheese pizza.

Now the big-ticket item is what to give up everyday until Easter. It’s suppose to be something really hard – like wine. Sorry, can’t do it. But I will give up my other big love – ice cream.

Last year I gave up ice cream and continued on for months after Lent. I lost about 10 pounds. Circumstances made me reach for the freezer aisle again beginning around Thanksgiving and I’m sure I’ve put the weight back on. So ice cream it is!

Hey, it’s not a bad thing to deprive ourselves of our vices every once in a while. It makes us strong. It makes us less selfish and it teaches us that we really are better than the “things” in life we crave.

Easter is a spiritual day in so many ways and even if you are not religious, spring is a beautiful time to renew!



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