Last year, the husband and I attempted to do an experiment around Medieval Lent. It was a last minute decision (not the week before, but close), and we had a lot of exceptions (new world foods were fine, if we were otherwise keeping to the no meat/eggs/dairy strictures; allowing a cheat trade for our one non-lenten feast day a week, etc). We had a lot of life hit around the mid-point and the whole thing kind of crashed.
Coming in to this year, I have a little more time to think about it. Alarich is willing to try again if I want to, and I have over a month of planning/prep time. If we do it again (and I am not 100% sure that we will), I think our guidelines will be as follows:
1) Sticking to old world foods and period recipes as much as possible. I am already looking through my cook books and compiling a list of possible recipes.
2) Keep the Sunday as feast day idea. We aren’t 100% sure they did this in Medieval Lent, but we were both a lot happier having one feast day a week where we could have what we wanted. It usually became our “Let’s have date night” night. It also makes the calendar count for Lent work (Lent starts on the 18th of February and Runs through, according to the count down, Thursday the 2nd, which gives us 44 days instead of 40).
3) We will eat a normal number of meals. In period, they would have likely done one meal, and possibly a collation (or, for laborers, a breakfast). However, Alarich has modern health issues that require regular meals. And my employees shouldn’t have to deal with me when I am Hangry.
4) The Feast of the Annunciation will be a Feast Day (it’s Alarich’s birthday, and it will be celebrated).
So, like I said, we are thinking about it. I think we will probably make the call closer to Carnivale whether we will actually do it or not. It will likely depend on what things look like as I work through the prep process.