Tuesday, March 04, 2014

Let there be...paczki. Or pancakes. Or both.

Ah, Fat Tuesday. The only day of the year where we willingly - nay, happily - eat prune filled Danish.

The local news started out their 5 a.m. news broadcast this morning with a live shot from National Bakery, showing people already lined up for the 6 a.m. opening. The shoppers today were mostly in search of the traditional Fat Tuesday Polish filled doughnuts, but a good portion were still looking for King Cake, the Mardi Gras treat of a ring shaped, cinnamon filled brioche dough covered in thick white frosting, sprinkled with green, gold and purple colored sugar.

Suddenly, I'm very hungry.

Pancakes are another traditional pre-Lenten treat. They may well be my dinner tonight, as I've both a hair appointment and an errand to run after work. Neither the paczkis nor the King cake are a favorite, though I've had both; pancakes, on the other hand, are a treat any time.

If all these celebrations are going on today, it must mean that tomorrow is Ash Wednesday. I've never been much of one to do a Lenten "give up", and I recently ran across a different take on the seasonal sacrifice.

Do you come from a tradition of "giving up" something for Lent? How do you mark and bring to conscious remembrance the sacrifice Jesus made on your behalf? Does your penance take the form of giving something up that will be difficult for you personally (not drinking coffee at all), or of sacrificing your money, time or talents to do something positive for someone else (offering babysitting services for each Fri/Sat in Lent, running errands for an invalid neighbor, bringing coffee (that you aren't drinking) in for your coworkers...)?

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