As I woke up on Monday morning, I realized the predictions for snow at the end of the day had become more significant. I knew I needed to get to the grocery store--not because I needed milk or bread--but because I needed bacon for our Shrove Tuesday meal.
Shrove Tuesday is the day before Ash Wednesday--the beginning of Lent. In the UK, it is pancake day. This harkens back to when milk, eggs and sugar were not allowed during Lent. Pancakes were made as a way to use these items up before the start of Lent. Pancake Day is still popular in England and in our household as well. Each Shrove Tuesday we make a stack of pancakes along with scrambled eggs and bacon.
This year making the pancakes took a bit of planning. Baby Anne required the gluten-free variety, so we made hers first. Then we mixed the batter for the more traditional pancakes. From that batter, we made about four pancakes for Clare. We then added blueberries to the remaining batter (Clare is not a fan of blueberries) and made pancakes for the rest of us.
I am glad I made it to the store on Monday before the storm hit. We in fact were snowed in today. It would have been a shame to miss out on our Shrove Tuesday bacon. While I was at the store, I also picked up a King Cake so we could enjoy the Mardi Gras tradition as well. Meg and Clare decorated Mardi Gras masks and we all snacked on King Cake for about 24 hours (I kept telling the girls, "We must finish it before Ash Wednesday!"). Clare wrapped up our celebrations by throwing in a few "Alleluias." The word "Alleluia" will be absent from the Liturgy during Lent and will not return until Easter. Clare remembered learning this at school and so quickly got in a few more "Alleluias" before Lent began.
Our snowy Shrove Tuesday has come to an end and I think we are ready for Ash Wednesday. At dinner tonight we all discussed what we would be giving up for Lent and we will attend Ash Wednesday Mass in the morning together. It is time for Lent to begin.