I have always believed that if one Feasts properly, one is also ready for the Fast. Naturally, if one fasts well, the Feast is more delicious still.
This year, despite the fact that Easter is quite early (the earliest it will be for the rest of my life), we are ready for a good, heart-y fast. I know it won’t be perfect–the flesh is so very weak–but we are primed to put our whole selves into the effort, body and soul.
It’s wonderful, too, to journey through the Great Fast with the Babe. Yesterday, Clean Monday, was the first day of Great Lent for Eastern Catholics. A day of strict fast and abstinence. For grown’d ups (as Mace says) that translates to no meat, eggs, or dairy and only two small meals per day. For a five year old? She had an egg in the morning but we had no sweets all day, even after Vespers and the Anointing of the Spiritual Athlete. No doughnuts after church? What is this?! She took it well, but I did have to keep reminding her.
And here we are, day two of Lent. I feel much more prepared this year than last. Last year we made our Lenten table cross, and we set it out again this year.
Last year I put together the Lenten Egg activity and it was all ready to go this year. (Also, this year our Christmas tree is down so we are using a basket for the eggs.)
Since the date of Easter changes each year, all you need is the proper number of squares and you can fill in the specific dates (to help you keep track). The Sundays of Lent don’t change, either, so those are written in.
If you’d like to print your own version of this calendar, you can download your printable PDF here. I hope you find it useful!
I might color my own this year to keep track of my good deeds.. does anyone have any tips for keeping a good Lent? A Great Lent?