Shrove Tuesday... that day when tradition dictates that we gorge ourselves on all the fatty, yummy, bad-for-us things in the cupboard before we become abstemious until Easter.
From 1978 to 2010 I dutifully kept a "lenten fast", first giving up sugar in drinks (to which I never returned) then sweets and chocolates, cakes and puddings, coffee, tea and indeed lots of other things. Mostly it was an act of discipline but I also set aside such money as I would have spent on treats to donate to a charitable appeal - I wasn't "just" giving up, I was also giving out.
In 2011, Lent caught me unawares and, recently released from the dietary and lifestyle restrictions of cancer treatment I didn't give anything up. Instead, I began a practice of using the Christian Aid "Count Your Blessings" scheme to collect (quite large sums of) money for the charity in gratitude for things taken for granted in this country.
This year I'm having another change. The 40 Acts campaign is about generosity, with assorted challenges to be attempted each day. It's new for me (it's actually been around quite a long time) and I am looking forward to the challenge it offers. Watch this space to see how I get on!