Liturgical Living heads up! Lent is quickly approaching. Ash Wednesday is February 26th this year, so we’ve only got a couple weeks to get our acts together here and figure out what we’re going to do.
Also, it’s Catholic Mom Bundle time again! This year’s Lent bundle has dozens of digital resources for faith and family life, including Lent and Valentine stuff. Click here to head over though my affiliate link to purchase or learn more, or stay tuned for more details at the end of the post.
I’ve written SO MUCH about Lent over the years, and I’ll link to some of those posts below 👇 in case you want to get caught up/refreshed, but this year I want to highlight one aspect of our Lent observance that I’ve come to especially appreciate: Decorating for Lent. Decorating our homes is something we usually associate with Christmas. It’s SUCH a meaningful part of the Christmas season for me. So, many years ago, when I decided that I wanted Lent to be meaningful in our home as well, it seemed like decorating for it would be a good place to start.
Feast your eyes on this, one of my very first blog posts, if you dare. What in the world filter am I using?:
During these six weeks, I try to create a general atmosphere in our home that makes it feel different than other times of the year. On the morning of Ash Wednesday, after we get back from Mass, the kids and I get to decorating. We put burlap and little cacti and rocks on the mantle above our fireplace.
We put a purple tablecloth on our dining room table. A centerpiece made of a crown of thorns (we use this one, or a homemade one from our bougainvillea bush outside) and three of these giant vintage spike nails can’t help but make an impression on all of us over dinner. It’s a real conversation starter.
We hang up our printable Lent reminders and countdown calendar, and put our Stations of the Cross coloring pages up in the hallway.
We set up our Lenten Sacrifice Beans to keep track of all the good deeds and small sacrifices the kids make during Lent.
On Passion Sunday, we drape our crucifixes and our little altar table with purple cloth.
Since we spend so much time at home, it’s nice for our house to reflect the season. We see Lent all around us. When my kids “forget” that it’s Lent and ask if they can have a treat or watch a show, I can just point to a cactus and ask, “Hmm, can you?” (Maybe the air quotes here is too aggressive, but how do they forget so much?! 😆)
So much of Lent for me is really just that mindfulness of the season. Decorating can help keep me focused on the sacrifices I’m trying to make for the season, and remind me why I’m doing it.
Maybe it could help you, too!
And now, for Valentine’s Day . . .
Next topic: Fortunately there’s no Valentine’s Day/Ash Wednesday conundrum this year. But, ya know, Valentine’s Day IS coming too, in just a few days, and our kids are probably going to want us to be ready for that too.
If you need some quick, Catholic, Valentines, there are free printables on the blog here:
And three sets in the digital shop, formatted for easy double-sided printing!
Or the new Spiritual Bouquet Valentines . . .
Do you decorate for Lent? I’d love to hear what it looks like in your home.