Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Mardi Gras! A History Lesson.

As a child, we never celebrated Lent.  Celebrate is probably not the correct word.  We never observed Lent.  I learned about Lent in college when many of my peers were fasting for forty days from things like chocolate or gossip.  Here's a little secret:  I have never fasted during Lent.  I'm not sure why but I know that I don't like being told what to do.  I'm so stubborn.

Mardi Gras is French for Fat Tuesday, referring to the practice of the last night of eating richer, fatty foods before the ritual fasting of the Lenten season, which begins on Ash Wednesday.  Historically, Lent meant giving up alcohol, sugar, fatty foods and sometimes even bread - and everyone did it. There are probably many Catholics who still do give up all the things but it's my understanding that, for modern Christians and Catholics, fasting from one vice is enough.  So, on the Tuesday before Lent everyone consumed all of their aforementioned items the night before the fast began.  Thus, you have the wild Mardi Gras parties and the what have you. So, how do we celebrate Mardi Gras?  Eating pancakes!

Some Europeans celebrate Pancake Tuesday.  Dan and I learned about this tradition while living in France and we were like, "Pancakes for dinner?!  Yes, please!"  So, it's been our family tradition for the past few years.

So, Happy Fat Tuesday, friends!  Do you celebrate or observe mardi gras or lent?  Tell us about it!

BB, chewing on mardi gras beads like a boss! | Delicious pancakes. My favorite.



  1. Here in Pennsylvania dutch land, we eat fasnachts on Fat Tuesday. They're kinda like fried doughnuts, but more awesome. :)


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