All in all, we are a pretty religious family. We try our hardest to attend church every Sunday, but with a toddler and a busy travel schedule, I'll be honest and say it doesn't always happen. I don't believe that showing up to church is a complete absolution, but instead that prayer and what you carry in your heart are true reflections of your faith.

Lent is an important time of the year for me. It is the time I challenge myself to give up something for 40 days - a true sacrifice - in order to prepare my heart for Easter. We abstain from meat on Fridays, and try our hardest to be at church for each Holy day. But sacrificing something during Lent is one thing I can do, once a year, to renew my faith.

Some things I've given up in the past were refined sugar, coffee, chocolate chip cookies & dairy. While I was able to abstain for the entire 40 days, some sacrifices were harder than others.

In thinking about what I wanted to sacrifice this year, I had a really hard time. I really, really wanted to challenge myself, but at the same time, didn't want to take something away that makes me truly happy (or keeps me sane; ie, coffee or wine).

Here were some of my ideas for this year:

• Facebook... I know I can do this, but would be sad to miss out on pictures of my friends' kids. I actually calculated how many of my friends could possibly share birthday pictures/gender reveals/pregnancy announcements in the next 40 days, just to see how sad I would be.

• Shopping... this wold have to be very specific, because shopping does have to occur for us to survive (grocery shopping, etc). I was thinking maybe shopping for myself? Have I mentioned I work for a women's retailer? I get a really good discount... that's 40 days of not using that discount.

• Buying lunch... this would be so hard for me. I'm awful at bringing my lunch. Mainly because I'm too rushed in the morning to remember, but also because I despise carrying anything else in my purse.

• Chocolate... I've had an afternoon chocolate craving everyday at 3:00 ever since A was born. Most days I am able to ignore it, but giving it up entirely would definitely be difficult.

• Raising my Voice... this happens more often then I care to admit. I would still to discipline A, but maybe this would teach me that I don't have to raise my voice for him to hear me. I wonder how many times I would forget, and raise my voice anyways.

I haven't made up my mind yet (I have until tomorrow). Is anyone else giving up something for Lent?

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