Beginners Guide to Fat Tuesday

Do you know what’s a unique word? I’ll tell you: paczki.

I’ve been able to properly pronounce the word paczki all my life because my parents have always celebrated Fat Tuesday. You could always count on my dad bringing home a dozen paczki’s after work. You know, because he loved us.

It doesn’t matter much to me the quality of my annual paczki because they’re just that delicious. Although, being a picky eater puts me at a disadvantage, the cheese or Bavarian cream filled are always the first to go.

Every single year I forget that Fat Tuesday and Mardi Gras are one in the same. It wasn’t until I saw the movie Rio that I learned that I learned about the Brazilian celebration of Carnival. Parades, parties, loud music and dancing – an extroverts kind of thing.

The reason it’s often called Fat Tuesday is because of the fatty foods consumed the day before Lent begins. How do you know when Lent is about to start? All the fast food chains exclusively advertise their fish products. For those observing the six weeks of Lent (usually those from the Catholic Church), it involves giving up certain foods and or extravagance.

Ideas of Things to Give Up for Lent:

  • Chocolate
  • Sugar
  • Facebook, Twitter, the Internet
  • TV
  • Technology

I’ve personally given up Facebook, TV and chocolate in previous Lent seasons. I know someone who gave up sugar and chocolate, that’s an inspiration! I think my hardest year was giving up soda.

The act of giving up something you indulge in for Lent is to prepare your heart for Easter. It helps to remind you of what’s really important in life.

-Kristina Wise

P.S. Check out Rio, it’s a great family-fun movie full of laughs and tropical birds.

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