The “What are you Doing for Lent?” Carnival

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Lord, I don’t want to.

Please don’t make me do that.

I don’t think I need to give it up.

Please? I can handle it.

(hangs head)

To self: Just submit. Be the clay. Be the clay.

All right, Lord. I’ll give up Twitter for Lent. *cringe*image

Examining my computer time, which is far too oft and scattered, I wondered some time ago if it would be good for me to give up Twitter for Lent. I promptly forgot about the idea, and it wasn’t on my horizon as I was considering my Lenten promises this week. When my friend told me she was giving up Facebook for Lent tonight, my earlier idea came rushing back.

I’m a believer in God-incidences over coincidences, so I’m pretty sure He’s calling me to forego that little portion of social media for 40 days. I’m pretty sure it’s going to be very hard for me. And I’m pretty sure it’s going to be very good for me, and possibly for my writing focus.

For another take, see Conversion Diary’s recent post on fasting from media/computers.

So…what are you doing for Lent?

image Imagine that we’re all sitting around a table, or better yet on comfy couches with the noise of the children muffled in the nursery. None of them are coming out to see their mothers, and we can focus on our spiritual lives. (Photo from Wonderlane)

Let’s chat about the big question of the week: What are you doing for Lent? I am always challenged and my horizons broadened when I hear what unique, austere and savvy things other moms are called to by the Lord. Your ideas for sacrifices, prayer habits, acts of service and almsgiving are sure to help others on their walk.

As we sit around this virtual coffee table, let’s edify one another on our walks with Christ. Let us share of ourselves so as to push others in their faith journey, and let us write down our Lenten goals so as to push ourselves to remain accountable. It’s public record, ladies! (Men too! I just know there aren’t as many of you out there…)

I encourage you to visit at least a few of the other bloggers who link up, and leave a comment, even if it’s just a simple “I support you.” We know we’re all connected in the mystical Body of Christ, but since the soundtrack of our lives is usually not muffled behind a nursery door, the reality of the earthly support we have can be easily forgotten in the distractions of our daily duties. UPDATE:  Also visit Mama Says for a Meatless Meals carnival for Friday ideas!

If you’re not a blogger but are willing to share your Lenten challenges, please leave a comment here. I read every one, and I’m sure others will scroll down to include you in the conversation as well. I’m sharing “the rest” of my ideas below the linky.

Humility, see? Not everyone has to read my stuff just because I’m so important.

Link Up Here!

I know the linky is geared for recipes, but just share your blog name, the title of your post, and include a short description of your focus so people know where they’re headed when they visit you. It would be great if you would link back to this post, widening the round table to include your readers.


Katie @ Kitchen Stewardship My carnival post You can write a brief (250 chars) synopsis here to tempt readers to visit your post!

Lenetta @ Nettacow 40 Bags in 40 Days Our Bible study group is jumping on the bandwagon to declutter 40 bags in the 40 days of Lent. We're completely flexible on it and we'd love to have you join us!

Kate Wicker @ Momopoly A Lent by the Beatitudes To help me achieve authentic joy, I'm using the Beatitudes and Jesus' lessons for happiness as a springboard for my Lenten resolutions.

Colleen Duggan@ Meditations Of A Stay At Home Mom Joy Through Tears Through prayer, God has prompted me to live Lent joyfully amidst hand carved Crosses.

Paula @ The Chicken Coop Breaking bad habits & midnight prayers Giving up things I value & love are going to be hard, but so worthwhile.

Maria @ Very Blessed Mommy Sacrificing to find order

Anne@ Catholic Mommy Brain A Step Back for a Step Forward This Lent, I'm letting go of a few things and letting God in, hoping to reprioritize and rejuvenate.

Barb @ My Daily Round Preparing for Lent

Jen @ Happy Little Homemaker Lent 2010 getting back to basics...

Tina@MyPricelessFishers My 40 Days of Lent

Jenn @ OverStiffDrinks The Stupid Marathon For Lent, I am preparing to run a marathon for Haiti. The hardest part about training is not complaining.

Colleen @MartinFamilyMoments On Lent Instead of focusing completely on what to give up, I am looking on ways to grow closer to Christ.

Em @ Average Radical Lenten Newbie I've never observed Lent before. I've never taken communion. Until this post, I'd never told anyone I even thought about Jesus. It's a party and I nearly had a stroke writing it. <3

Rachel @ Young Catholic Mom Paczki, not Poonchki I'm not doing \"too much\", instead, I'm going to do three small things (to be decided later today at adoration).

Sarah's Musings 10 Ideas to Journey towards Easter as a Family 10 Easy ways to have children participate in Lent - written for (link to full article on my blog)

Becca @ The Earthling's Handbook Fasting from Environmental Damage Take better care of Creation by doing one of those \"green\" things you've been meaning to try.

Anjanette @ Eat From Your Pantry Giving Up Narcissism for Lent Cutting back on some of my internet usage this year.

Becky @ ourwyolife Lenten Resolutions Less food and facebook, being a better mom and wife

Jen@BigBinder Making Unmade Decisions Clearing the clutter in my life that has resulted from unmade decisions, and going confidently forward.

Sara @ ThrivingMama Giving & Gratitude Striving to be truly grateful by appreciating what we have and giving away what we don't need!

Alicia@through my \"I\"s Starting Anew getting rid of gossip and closer to the Lord....

Lenetta @ Nettacow Mid-Year Resolution 1) Stop Making Excuses, 2) Just Do It, 3) Use Home Mgmt Binder, 4) Go To Bed

Heather @ BlessedandBusy Lenten Links and Resources A collections of links and resources including: reading, cooking during Lent, children\\'s activities and 40 bags in 40 days.

Kelli Lent for my 5 Yr Old My son voluntarily gives up his Frosted Flakes and prompts me to participate in Lent.

Katie’s Lenten Promises

Church tradition encourages the faithful to make commitments to God in three areas:

  1. fasting (can be from food, but other sacrifices are equally valid)
  2. prayer
  3. almsgiving (both monetary and works of service)

Here’s what I’m doing this year, as a matter of public record:


  • Second helpings. I fasted from eating between meals for years, but since I’ve been pregnant and nursing so much the past five years, it’s just not a positive challenge for me right now. I get too crabby when the kids have their snack!
  • White (refined) sugar. Like last year, I’m allowing quality dark chocolate. A mom’s got to keep her sanity!
  • Corn and Soy. This pretty much means nothing in a box or bottle or package. Last year at this time, I wasn’t even close to ready for this one, but now it won’t be a very big change from regular life at all.
  • Unsoaked whole grains. Don’t know what that means? See this: Why Soak Whole Grains? I’m leaving white flour an option so hubby doesn’t kill me over take-out pizza. He was seriously upset today when I told him what I was thinking for Lent. “You can’t just make decisions that will affect the family without asking me!” He kept coming back to the availability of take-out pizza. I told him I’d write that exception into the contract.
  • Twitter

Why in the world am I giving up so much? Am I setting myself up for failure? I really hope not. I tend to make Lent incredibly austere and rigorous on myself, for three reasons:

  1. I am so weak. I have zero self-discipline.
  2. Any sacrifice for God is easier, and infinitely more worthwhile, than a dietary or routine change just for myself. Today I was trying to figure out which meal should be my grain-free meal (who assigned this blasted Monday Mission this week, anyway!) and it was HARD. I didn’t want to do it. I thought, “If this was Lent and I could offer it up, if it was for GOD and not just my inconsequential life, it would be – nearly – a piece of cake. Grain-free cake.
  3. There is an end. I can do more things for a finite period of time than an undefined or self-defined period.

I will most likely be much more successful at sticking with ALL of the above than some of those below, but I’m in a pretty low place in prayer lately. God misses me. I need to make some big changes and pray that some of them stick.


  • 10 minutes a day reading my Bible study (that I’m supposed to read anyway) – must happen before blogging time. *eek*
  • Morning offering – hit knees as soon as I get up, say at the least “Good morning, Lord. This day is yours,” if I haven’t the brain power to do anything further. I commit to this every Lent…and then always lose the habit within a few months. Sad, but reality.
  • One hour of adoration per week. I’ve fallen out of my weekly hour at 6 a.m. Thursdays since I gave myself an “out” due to Lovey Girl still not sleeping through the night. I need to reschedule it by the end of Lent for a time that is more realistic.


Get up as soon as children are awake and ready to be out of bed, or on first alarm, whichever comes first.


I feel selfish lately. I don’t want to give anything more! I don’t know if it’s just being a mother that makes me feel as though I’m already taxed enough, or if I’m simply, sinfully selfish because I feel like there’s not enough time in the week to do what I want to do with my writing already. How can I give more time?

image I need to pray about this one. Certainly the Lord wants me to give something to His children. Maybe He wants me to give to MY children. Last year I committed to spending a conscious 10 minutes a day with each of them individually – no phone, no “just a minute”, no folding laundry or anything. Just playing. Ten minutes each. Believe it or not, it was difficult some days. I’ll probably do that again, but I need some time to discern. (photo from lynda@dwc)

I will give to my readers: at least one Mary and Martha post each week of Lent. Not exactly Advent Daily Dose, but perhaps next Lent I won’t have 2 other series running at the same time! (Or is this for myself as well? I like writing about God!)

Now I still have a few days to continue to pray and discern about what God wants me to do for Him for Lent. What do You think, Lord?

I’m cross posted at Amys Finer Things this week. Getting my ducks in a row for Lent is definitely a Finer Thing.

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26 Bites of Conversation So Far

  1. says

    Katie, I started doing the Morning Offering by making a daily appointment in my Outlook calendar. Since I check my e-mail just about first thing, it helps. :>) Once in a while I even remember before I turn the computer on… I have since taken to “snoozing” the notification so that every couple of hours or so, I renew my offering. Some days, it stops me in my tracks and reminds me that even my silly toddler-related-not-so-bad sufferings are just that – not so bad.

    Thank goodness Ash Wednesday is still a few days off – I need to tighten up my “mid year” resolutions (it’s too late for new year, eh?) regarding housekeeping and get moving on them. I wonder if I should include getting to bed on time? Yikes!
    .-= Lenetta @ Nettacow´s last blog ..Make the 40 Bags Challenge Work for You =-.

  2. says

    “Be the clay.” I love that.

    I’m giving up blog comments and going on at least a one-week Internet fast starting on Ash Wednesday.

    I think it’s great that so many of us are purging some of our Internet time. Social networking, blogging, and the WWW have an important place in our lives, but you can’t Google grace. God is knocking on my heart. This Lent I hope to open the door far and wide for him.

    Thanks so much for hosting, Katie. God bless.
    .-= Kate Wicker @ Momopoly´s last blog ..Living Lent by the Beatitudes =-.

  3. Julie says

    I have to say that I am going to limit internet usage unless/until all my other duties are done for the day, including rosary, reading, etc. It’s time to refocus my priorities which is why I love the gentle reminder of lent.

  4. says

    I am not Catholic so I do not observe lent, but I did really enjoy this article. Our church is doing a weekend long fast in March and I was wondering how in the world I would pull that off if I had to cook for my children. Now I think that I will do the fast, only not fasting from all food. I will think of something else to fast from. I do like your idea of not eating between meals. Thanks for sharing!
    .-= Stacy´s last blog ..Thrifting! =-.

    • Katie says

      I find that bread and water is an incredible fasting experience, even just for one meal, especially if the others in your household are eating real food. It’s penitential and powerful. :) Katie

  5. says

    As soon as I saw that you were giving up Twitter, I knew I had to too. A hard thing to admit, but I know in my heart that God is telling me to use my time more wisely.
    Thanks fo the inspiration!
    .-= Sandpiper´s last blog ..Let It Be =-.

  6. says

    I am so stuck on what to give up. I often do something food-related, because that’s nice and concrete, but what with being pregnant this time around, I don’t feel there is anything I can give up. I already gave up all the unhealthy stuff, and all the healthy stuff needs to stay in!

    Then I can’t do something extra that takes any significant time, because I know I wouldn’t do it. I work full-time, have an hour-long commute, and spend almost all the rest of my time sleeping, it seems!

    And since I’m struggling with loneliness and depression, I’m afraid to make any reduction in internet — because it is the only contact with the outside world I have besides work.

    So, I guess I’m in a bit of pre-Lent panic. You had a lot of good ideas, though, so I’ll read through them and the stuff other people linked up, and see if I can find a good idea to borrow. Thanks so much for posting this to help me start thinking about it!
    .-= Sheila´s last blog ..Granola bars, update =-.

    • Katie says

      I’ll pray for you, my sister in Christ! Some non-food ideas: pray during your commute, pray before all 3 meals in the day, fast from complaining, do an examination of conscience each night as you’re falling asleep, pray for your unborn baby every time s/he moves, pray a novena to St. Gerard, patron saint of mothers, or to the Blessed Virgin to consecrate your motherhood, pray for your spouse every day (maybe on that commute)…I know the Lord has something in mind for you that you can incorporate in your day!
      God bless,

      • says

        Katie, thanks for the prayers! I do normally pray a little on my commute, but I had the idea of cutting out radio on the way so that I could use the whole time a little better — part praying, and the rest thinking and de-stressing. I have noticed I arrive at work less stressed and come home less discouraged when I have had silent time in the car on the way. Other than that, I’m trying to add 10 minutes of prayer a day. I think I can manage 10 minutes! Thanks for the prayers and for getting me thinking about it.

        P.S. (and completely off-topic) If you look at my last blog post, it’s frozen yogurt. That one’s inspired by your mission about yogurt! :)
        .-= Sheila´s last blog ..Frozen Yogurt =-.

  7. says

    My husband and I are going through RCIA right now and are getting baptised, confirmed and recieving our first communion this year. Because we are going through I want to choose something that will be extremely difficult for me. Thant’s why i’m choosing to give up junk food. I plan on praying a lot during my urges, which usually happen during my daughters naptime, I plan on doing the rosary too as my prayer when it is naptime.
    .-= Lynn ´s last blog ..a little late but here =-.

  8. says

    Katie, you’re an inspiration.

    This is my very first year observing Lent. It’s a big one for me, or at least it feels pretty huge. The post I linked talked about my primary sacrifice. I’m also giving up pop, which I NEED to do, but most certainly am not going to WANT to do round about Friday, probably.

    All things through Christ, right?
    .-= Em.´s last blog ..Menu Monday: RIP Oven Edition =-.

    • Katie says

      My hubby gives up pop every year and hates it, too! You’re in good company, and that is a tough one when it’s a habit. :)
      Sisters in Christ,

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