Since the boys I nanny are Catholic, go to a Catholic school, etc. we've had a lot of discussion about Lent and Easter recently. The fun conversations started on Wednesday last week. I knew it was Ash Wednesday and wondered if they would ask me why I did not have ashes on my forehead. Amusingly enough, when I picked them up from school, before even saying "Hello," Nando (short for Fernando) informed me that he had to wipe that stuff off his face because it was dirty. Nando is five years old and says the funniest things! He didn't seem to notice that I didn't have any ashes. Marco is seven and hadn't wiped his off. He is old enough to start to understand what it is all about, and one of the first things he told me is that they had to give up something for Lent.
Marco has decided that he is giving up video games. What a sacrifice for a seven-year-old! It will be a sacrifice for all of us, though, since it would be torture for us to play while he's trying not to! haha Nando hadn't picked anything to give up, but was inspired (?) by his older brother and said that he would give up video games, as well. Then, he decided maybe he would just give up Super Mario. THEN, he decided that he would give it up in January, February, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November and December. I informed him that he skipped March, and he told me he did that on purpose because he wants to be able to play in March. I think the whole idea of Lent is a bit over his head! :)
As I expected, I was soon asked what I would be giving up. Years ago, some friends and I would always give up something for Lent, but never participated religiously or anything. I hadn't given it any thought at this point, so I told Marco I had to come up with something. I'm with these boys every day, there was no way I could get away with not giving something up! After much thought, I decided to give up frivolous spending. Not that I do much of it these days, since I don't have much money to work with, but I do make excuses for myself to buy small things that I want. It's really a self-control issue, and I guess that is part of the point, right?
Fun tid-bit: On Wednesday, we had a couple appointments to go to after school, and while sitting in the waiting room for one of them, a family walked in and they all had ashes on their forehead. Nando noticed this, looked at the woman and asked, "Are you a teacher at my school?" lol Those kids keep me laughing!