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Monday, March 3, 2014

MPM: Week of 3/2

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Not only is it the very first (full) week of March, it's also the start of Lent on this week, beginning with Ash Wednesday. As a convert to the Catholic faith, growing up I had never even HEARD of Lent! Even though I was raised in a Christian home - but wasn't baptized and only went to church sporadically - we never really talked about much outside of Christmas Day and Easter Sunday for "holidays" or special occasions. Over the last several years, since joining the Church, I have tried to embrace the sacrificial and penitential nature of Lent, usually failing miserably. Still learning, and trying is a step in the "right" direction, I suppose.

How does this pertain to our menu plan this week, you ask? Practicing Catholics over the age of 14 are to abstain from eating meat on Ash Wednesday and every Friday during Lent, up to and including Good Friday, as well as those between 18 and 59 are to fast on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday. The boys and I will sit down tonight to discuss their Lenten sacrifices and anything extra they would like to do (extra prayers, an extra weekly Mass, donating their allowance/toys/etc, volunteering, whatever else may pop in our heads), but I have already given some consideration for myself. I plan to, for the most part, Monday through Saturday, for the entirety of Lent, abstain from eating meat. It won't be easy for 2 big reason: 1.) I enjoy eating meat, whether it be a nice juicy hamburger or a piece of chicken or even kielbasa. 2.) Jason is definitely a carnivore, and while he will "give up" meat on Ash Wednesday and Fridays for the next 40 days, I don't believe that he would ever willingly go an entire 40 day period without it! Now Sundays are not included in the 40 days of Lent, and so we will be open to a less restricted meal plan. (Lucky for me, my birthday falls on a Sunday, so I won't feel as though I'm "cheating" by not sticking to this on that day :) )

If one of the following meals calls for meat or the main entree is meat, after Wednesday, I will be just eating the other parts of the meal. I'm not sharing this to pretend to be "holier than thou" but as a way for me to be accountable to myself.

Last Thursday, the boys and I stopped and grabbed some frozen pizzas for dinner, and then Friday night, we opted for Chinese takeout. So much for sticking to the plan last week. We did have cheeseburgers on Saturday and the meat/chicken veggie dish - cooked in the oven in a baking dish rather than foil packets - on last night. That left us with one other true "hold-over" meal, which works out fine. See Friday below. It will be getting made this week, as the boys don't have school and I won't want to leave the house and go anywhere! HA!

Without further ado, here is our menu plan starting today:

  • Monday: Leftovers
  • Tuesday: Taco macaroni and cheese (made with homemade creamy mac and cheese - see last week's menu for link to recipe - ground beef and taco seasoning to taste)
  • Wednesday: Individual cheese pizza - the boys have play rehearsal until 6:30 and Jason has class at 6pm so it's going to be a made-to-order-when-you-are-ready kind of night. Jack and I will probably eat with Jas before picking up E and Alex. They'll eat once they get home.
  • Thursday: Spaghetti (with ground beef for Jason and if the boys want some)
  • Friday: Tuna noodle casserole
  • Saturday: Zucchini and potato pancakes (with sausage for the boys)
Check out more menu plans here: Menu Plan Monday