Fatty Fatty Tuesday

 

Happy FAT Tuesday everyone!

Since yesterday’s post was long and loaded I figured I’d lighten things up today. As you know, today is FAT TUESDAY and tomorrow is Ash Wednesday which kicks off the celebration of Lent.
Even before I converted to Catholicism I practiced Lent.  Well, more dabbled than practiced, but I liked the idea of sacrificing something in my own life in preparation for Easter Sunday so it generally consisted of giving something up. I remember being really inspired by a friend of mine who gave up chocolate, cheese, AND soda one year in high school. I thought she was bonkers for doing all three at once {I would not survive without cheese} but I decided that since I’m a self-proclaimed chocoholic it would be beneficial to try to give it up. Boost the self-control, cut back on the sugar. Easy enough, right?

Wrong.

While I made sure all of the chocolate was out of the house , there was one thing I forgot about. I had a morning ritual of swinging by the WaWa that was ont he way to school {when I wasn’t running late} and grabbing a cup of coffee. Well, a cup of sugary caramel latte. And so that I didn’t have coffee breath during school I would grab a ‘king size’ Andes mint up at the register.

Andes mint = chocolate.
High school Sara = unable to think clearly before 3rd period.
Lenten chocolate fast = screwed up on day 1.

Yes, I failed my very first Lenten fast by forgetting that Andes mints are not just mints, but CHOCOLATE mints. I’m awesome.

So, since I’d already failed on day 1, I figured I may as well just scrap the whole ‘no chocolate for 40 days’ thing and enjoy the month+ leading up to Easter. Next year I’d try again.

The next year rolled around and I was determined to make my chocolate fast work!
Day 1 of Lent and I’m feeling great about my chocolate-free decision, I’m JUST barely going to make it on time to school so there’s no chance of me “accidentally” eating an Andes Mint from WaWa. So I grab my bag, grab a Slim Fast shake {the breakfast of champion high schoolers who refuse to wake up any earlier than they have to when school starts at 7:25} and am on my way to school. I feel a sense of pride as I come up to the light at the previous year’s point of failure {aka WaWa} and smirk to myself thinking, “I can’t believe I just ‘forgot’ that I was eating chocolate last year – what a bonehead I was”, as I take the last gulp of my Slim Fast shake. My CHOCOLATE Slim Fast Shake. As I choke on that final gulp, realizing that I’d repeated my mistake for the 2nd year in a row, and admitting that I was, in fact, STILL a bonehead, I continued on to school.

You’ll be happy to know that I didn’t just bail on Lent all together that 2nd year, and although there were at least 3 other times in the span of 40 days when I realized I was  accidentally eating chocolate, I did make it to Easter at least TRYING to keep my fast.

Needless to say fasting didn’t really happen for the next few years, and if it did it was interpreted quite loosely.

Now that I’m a confirmed Catholic and far more mature and disciplined than I was in high school, Lent is something I really enjoy participating in, and take pretty seriously. Last year the hubs and I fasted from sweets together. He also fasted from alcohol but since I rarely drink I just stuck with the sugary sweets. It was tough, I was jones-in for sweet tea and Nutella, but we got through it and I went into a full-fledged sugar coma once Easter came around.
This year we’ve decided to cut out the sweets again and as a change of pace I’m going to try to add some things into my daily routine. Prayer is something I could always use more of in my life so that’s one thing I’m really going to highlight over the next 40 days {hopefully forming a pattern that will last far beyond Easter Sunday}. Since I’ve stopped dancing and spend most of my time IN the house with Keelin I’m also going to make a point to increase my physical activity. Thanks to the world of iPhones I’ve added a few yoga and Pilates apps to my phone and plan on setting aside time each day to engage my body. NOT only that, but I’m going to limit the amount of time I have the TV on during the day. When you’re a WAHM it can get kind of boring. No offense to my kid, who is a blast, but 3 hours of playing with tupperware can drain a mama, so it’s not uncommon for me to have something {movie, tv show, etc} playing in the background throughout the day. Keelin has her own Sesame Street time but I’ve been disappointed in myself at how much that background noise has grabbed my main attention over my daughter or my work. No good. Has to change. Commencing change now – well tomorrow.

SO… now it’s your turn to tell me about your Lenten adventures. Are you giving something up? Adding something to your daily routine? Do you have a Lenten FAIL story like mine worth sharing? How do you keep yourself on track for 40 days? TELL ME TELL ME TELL ME!

Until next time…

Don’t forget to join me for the upcoming Link UP Week! A full week of fantastic link ups to help find new blogs, learn about each other, and generally have fun!

link up weekLet me know if you are planning on joining me so I can give you a shout out the week of and check in on your link ups! Here are just a FEW of the link ups you can expect during Link UP week.

It’s Ok Thursday – A Complete Waste of Make Up and Brunch With Amber
Craft-O-Maniac Monday – Craft-O-Maniac
Fill In The Blank Friday – The Little Things We Do
Social Sunday – Ashley’s Carnival Ride and A Complete Waste of Make Up

Do you have a favorite LINK UP that you don’t see on this list? Let me know what it is so I can join in on the fun!

Baptizing the Bean

Happy Monday everyone! I hope you had a fantastic weekend like we did!

Saturday was a wonderful and exciting day as the hubs, the pups, the bean and I gathered with friends and family to celebrate Keelin’s baptism! Well, we left the pups at home, but they were there for the after party back at the house.

The day started out a bit too gloomy for my taste but by the time we arrived at the church the sun was shining and the sky was filled with beautiful white fluffy clouds. Quite the perfect setting for such a special service.

Before heading to the church I dressed Keelin in a footed ballerina onesie {I know that’s TECHNICALLY NOT what they are called but if it’s one piece, it should be called a onesie… okay Gerber?!?} that snapped up the front because I wanted to keep her christening gown as wrinkle {and spit up} free as possible and I knew it would throw her into a hissy fit if I had to lift anything over her head while changing her. Although I’m convinced she is one of the happiest babies on the planet, there is one thing she absolutely cannot stand, and that’s changing clothes. That’s when I hear her best screams! But I digress…

chillen

The change into her christening gown went without a single fuss or tear {kudos to me} and Keelin looked quite adorable. The gown she wore was not only the gown I was baptized in, but it originally belonged to my mother’s father. I didn’t get a very good picture of it but the the delicate lace details are absolutely beautiful and she looked like quite the little angel! Here’s a shot I took a few days before when we first tried it on.

What did I say… absolute angel, right?!?

Z’s mother also  her a beautiful bonnet that ended up being slightly too big but we put it on her anyway since it was so cute.

We had a lovely group of friends and family there to share in the day and we couldn’t have been more thankful for their presence for such a special occasion. Keelin is TRULY loved!

She was a little past due for her morning BM so I was slightly concerned that she would totally let it rip in the middle of a prayer or in the priests arms {do you think that’s considered blasphemous?} but thankfully she had impecable timing and dropped a nice load right before the service started. My daughter the genius… always planning ahead!

She only cried for a minute or two during the service and surprisingly it was NOT while the priest was pouring water on her head! I actually think that was her favorite part!

I did have to giggle when she was crying because she it seemed her tears were contagious as her mass buddy Ruthie started wailing as well. It was a classic case of baby see baby do, I suppose. They’re best buds for life!

a little blurry but still cute

Other than that the service was absolutely perfect. We couldn’t have asked for a better day, or a better weekend for that matter!  There’s nothing quite as wonderful as feeling {and SEEING} the love from friends and family, during such a special occasion!

with the amazing Father Flanagan.

notice the open mouth and blurry arm… this is when the tears came!

Until next time… 

The winner of my favorite picture of the day:

HA!

An Easter tradition greatly missed

Time to get a bit nostalgic. 
When it comes to holidays people are more likely to go “all out” for what I like to call the “Big Five”: Christmas, Halloween, Thanksgiving, New Year’s Eve and birthdays. 
Think about it. While we ‘celebrate’ {more like recognize} everything from President’s Day to St. Paddy’s day, the Big Five are the holidays that require full re-designs of store set-ups and days of planning and decorating to pull off. There are parties out the wazoo, holiday-specific food you serve and travel plans to make. 
I’m a huge fan and supporter of the Big Five but always get a little bummed that people tend to forget about one of my favorite holidays:
EASTER!

I’ve always loved Easter and although it doesn’t get the same amount of “decorative” attention that the rest of the Big Five normally do, I always welcome it’s arrival. To avoid sitting on my religious soap box for too long, I definitely attribute my love of the holiday to my love of what it represents in faith. I have so many things to thank God for everyday and on Easter I get to celebrate Christ’s resurrection into heaven and his gift of eternal life for those who follow Him.  {stepping off of soap box}
In addition to my ‘holier’ reasons for loving Easter, I also have a lifetime supply of great memories that are tied to the sweet and colorful day. One of which involved a fun tradition that I plan on continuing with my future children. 
Every Easter morning growing up, my mother would wake up my brother and I and take us to the starting point of our adventure. She’d usually pretend like it was any other morning and she was getting us ready for the day but when we would look down at the floor by our bedroom doors, there would be tiny pieces of these:

“Oh my goodness, it looks like the Easter Bunny has been here!”, she’d say as our excitement would rise!
We’d follow those bunny tail puffs all over the house. Up the stairs, down the stairs, in this room, in that room, OUTSIDE, in to the shed and anywhere else they would lead us until we finally found the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, no wait…wrong holiday, the bright and colorful EASTER baskets filled with special goodies guaranteed to make us smile!
It was always such a special treat and something I looked forward to every Easter. 
When I went away to college my mom shipped my Easter basket of goodies, complete with a few cotton balls for nostalgia.
I absolutely love this fun little game and tradition that my parents started and can’t wait to use it with my kids when they are old enough to enjoy it! {I suppose they have to exist before they get old enough, eh?}

 
Until next time…
What are some Easter traditions you observed growing up?