Tag Archives: Ash Wednesday

Ashes To Ashes

Yesterday was Ash Wednesday, which, for Catholics, is the start of forty days of Lent, a time of prayer, fasting and almsgiving, culminating in Holy Week and ultimately Easter.  At Mass, when the priest makes the sign of the cross on our foreheads with ashes (from the burning of blessed palms), he says, “Remember that you are dust, and to dust you shall return.”

Maybe since Ash Wednesday is a day of fasting, I found myself musing about the elemental nature of composting.  Our vegetable scraps begin in garden dirt somewhere, grow and then serve as nourishment (not just physical but emotional as well) and, when we return them to the dirt via composting, they help nurture new life for the garden and live on.  We, too, are created from ashes, have a finite time on earth to live and our bodies return to the earth eventually, but our souls live on.  Just a bit of gardening food for thought …

Fasting in the Catholic church means two small meals and one regular meal.  In our home, for older teens and adults, we have traditionally eaten just one simple meal and as little as possible for the rest of the day, usually just a cup of tea and a piece of toast.  As a result, there is not much in my compost bucket.

fish chowder 2.15

What you can see (clockwise from top):

  • onion skin & stem ends
  • two eggshells
  • potato peels (might have roasted them if it was not a day of fasting!)
  • espresso grounds
  • garlic skin

With that, I made soft boiled eggs for my girl’s breakfast, two cups of espresso throughout the day for me and fish chowder with salmon (no cod at the fish market) for dinner.

I’m feeling more spiritually than physically nourished today.


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Posted by on February 19, 2015 in Musings, The Daily Bucket


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Toss It Tuesday & Ash Wednesday

So, with a broken dryer, I spent the week channeling my grandmother and hanging out my wet laundry to dry.  No kidding, I washed some light “dog” blankets that cover my sofas, put them out to dry in the frigid temps, and just when I was ready to bring them in I realized it had been raining for ten minutes.  Ugh!  Wet again!  I truly began to identify with all those pioneer books and English countryside novels where the women wait for sunshine to wash or have to hang wet laundry over the Aga in the kitchen.  Button down shirts and undershirts, ballet tights and leotards, and lots of soccer stuff was hanging everywhere.

Midweek we fasted for Ash Wednesday.  God was giving me some things to offer up and be thankful for let me tell you!  I reflected that these little deprivations followed two months of washing dishes by hand due to a broken dishwasher, a Monday spent preparing a meal for a friend and having only broth for us, and now wet clothes on my counters.  My comfort go-to is always a cup of tea or a quick Starbucks drive through, but I’ve decided that I’m drinking only water only for Lent, so how to chill?  A sip of water and a prayer … feeling spoiled and living in a land of no real wants, I definitely need forty days of Lent.


What you can see (clockwise top to bottom):

  • yellow onion skin & stem ends
  • sugar snap peas ends
  • garlic paper
  • clementine peels
  • used lime wedges
  • Toss It Tuesday shriveled cabbage (left over from weekend tacos)
  • organic strawberry tops
  • hiding underneath: cabbage core, banana peels, orange peels, more citrus

All I remember making with this bucket was the obligatory morning smoothies, a big pot of haluski (cabbage fried in butter with noodles – a staple in my family growing up and one of our four family food groups even now) and quick roasted cod with red curry sauce that is similar to this.  I was a little too worried about how hungry I was and how much I really wanted a warm cup of tea in my hands.


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