Yesterday, the weather was cold and wet here in Alabama.  But, as I backed the van out of the driveway to take the girls to preschool, Adi said, "Look, Mommy! We have purple flowers on our tree!"

Purple flowers on our tree are proof that spring is beginning its' beautiful debut. It starts with tiny purple flowers blooming on a tree and grows into an orchestra of birds chirping, grass turning green, and days warming.  Soon, we will all come out of hibernation and enjoy the simple life of spring.

Last night, we attended our Ash Wednesday service at church which marked another beginning for spring: the Lenten season.  Lent reminds me much of a race: runners start out strong, struggle through the middle, and give one final hoo-rah as the finish line approaches.  Easter is the crossing of the finish line; the first sip of cool water that the dehydrated runner sips.

This year, I'm choosing to take on joy and give up clutter. I'll be on maternity leave during the Lenten season and I want to enjoy this time with my newborn and family.  I want to notice the purple flowers, sing the lullabies, and play in the yard.


Since we are also moving, I'm taking the 40 Bags in 40 Days Challenge over at White House, Black Shutters.  I think this is going to be an awesome way to keep me accountable at simplifying our stuff as we begin life in a new home. I've already given away three bags of clothes!


If you are looking for some ideas for the whole family to do this year for Lent, check out Oh Amanda's new e-book A Sense of the Resurrection or Ann Voskamp's free family Lent and Easter Devotional.  You can also check out this post I did on fun family Easter activities. 

Allow Lent to be an entrance into Spring.  What winter layers do you need to remove as the weather warms?  How can you take on more without taking on more stress to your schedule?  Think about how Lent can challenge you in the best of ways.

I'd love for you to share what you are giving up or taking on this Lenten season in the comments section below.  We are a community and can keep each other accountable if we let each other in!  Praying for you as you begin your Lenten challenge. :)

Till next time, let your light shine!

Blessings, christen

Looking for more thoughts on Lent?  Check out these posts:

when God says no

for this season of Lent

Fat Tuesday