7QT: Seafood, Pope Francis, & Lent


1. During our Ash Wednesday dinner of baked salmon, rice, and asparagus, William turned to me and said, “This tastes really good. Is it okay to eat this on Ash Wednesday?” Compliments aside, I felt a little guilty. Salmon is kind of a luxury for us, and I was enjoying it too!

Then this today from Pope Francis: Don’t let meatless Fridays be an excuse to splurge on a seafood feast. So maybe I shouldn’t consider salmon a penitential food anymore (unless they’re salmon patties).

During the Lent I was in RCIA and deciding to join the Church, I was working for a logistics company. On Ash Wednesday that year I learned that most of my co-workers were Catholic, because they all made a big deal out of ordering Filet-O-Fish sandwiches instead of their usual Big Macs at lunch.

Fresh from an evangelical college, I would never have guessed that those folks were Christians, seeing as how everything else was “F-ing this” and “F-ing that!”

I like that the Church has so many material practices that stick with us and draw us back if we start to slip away. But I also like that Pope Francis doesn’t want to let me get away with just following the letter of the law.

2. I love all the activities that we can do for Lent. I try to push myself in Advent and Lent to do some kids’ crafts and baking that I wouldn’t normally make time for. But it’s so easy (for me) to make it too complicated. This piece from Better than Eden captures the essence of what I really want to strive for.

That said…here comes another “a few ideas for Lent” kind of post.

Some new books for Lent

3. Nathaniel is reading Pinocchio to the kids before bed. The book is darker than the film (so he says–I haven’t read it) and is much more a warning about the effects of keeping bad company.

File:C. COLLODI, Le avventure di Pinocchio (prefazione di Attilio Momigliano, lineografie di B. Albi Bachini di anni 15, Editrice La Tifernate, Libreria G. PACI, Unione Arti grafiche, 1944-1948) edizione rossa.jpg

Image from Wikimedia Commons

4. And, after hearing the “double, bubble, toil and trouble” bit on a poetry CD, the kids really want me to read Macbeth to them. (Actually they want to watch a movie of it–umm, NO.)  But I could read/summarize/censor it for them. It’s another great literary warning about the cumulative effects of sin, right?

File:The Three Witches from Shakespeares Macbeth by Daniel Gardner, 1775.jpg

The Three Witches from Shakespeare’s Macbeth,

by Daniel Gardner

5. Last year we purchased an Easter candle making kit from Illuminated Ink, which was very lovely


but perhaps not worth the $20 price tag. In years past we have just bought a large white candle from Dollar Tree and poked 5 cloves into it in the shape of a cross, and we will probably do that again this year.

6. Here’s a meatless recipe I’m going to try out this week (although I’ll probably skip the heavy cream): Penne with Spinach, Gorgonzola, & Walnuts. I used to make one like this with linguini from my Betty Crocker cookbook. I think the kids might be ready to try gorgonzola if I don’t tell them beforehand.

Another simple meal we like is just Broccoli, Penne, Red Pepper Flakes, and tons of garlic.

7. God’s Lenten gift to me: Teddy seems to be almost completely potty-trained…notwithstanding the last accident chronicled in yesterday’s post. He just turned 2 1/2 this week, and we’ve been at it with limited success for 2 months. That’s so much longer than it took the other kids, BUT they were all older–all around their 3rd birthday. So, yes, it is much more work with a younger child, but there is still a net gain in the diaper budget category!

Have a great weekend, and don’t forget to visit the always awesome 7 quick takes host Kelly!

seven quick takes friday 2


2 thoughts on “7QT: Seafood, Pope Francis, & Lent

  1. I see on the sidebar that you are reading a book on Dorothy Day. If you like it, would you please post a review so that I can learn more? I am always looking for more about her and actually, Endow has a study guide in the works about her. As I understand it, the guide will be part biography and part an overview (intro?) to the Church’s social teaching. I am expecting good things.

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