What is Mardi Gras? Mardi Gras or Carnivale season refer to events of the Carnival celebrations, beginning on or after the Epiphany or Kings day and culminating on the day before Ash Wednesday. Mardi Gras is French for Fat Tuesday, referring to the practice of the last night of eating richer, fatty foods before the ritual fasting of the Lenten season, which begins on Ash Wednesday. The day is sometimes referred to as Shrove Tuesday, from the word shrive, meaning “confess.” Related popular practices are associated with celebrations before the fasting and religious obligations associated with the penitential season of Lent. (source: Wikipedia.)

The official Mardi Gras colors were chosen in 1872 to honor the visiting Russian Grand Duke Alexis Alexis Alexandrovich Romanoff, whose house colors were purple, green and gold. The Meaning and Origin of Purple, Green, and Gold in Mardi Gras: Purple Represents Justice. Green Represents Faith. Gold Represents Power.

Mardi Gras Traditions

The 40 days of Lent, which precedes Easter is based on two Biblical accounts: the 40 years of wilderness wandering by the Israelites and our Lord’s 40 days in the wilderness when He was tempted by Satan.

Begin (or end) your Fat Tuesday with Mardi Gras pancakes! We have a pancake dinner on Mardi Gras at our church, usually as a fundraiser. It’s lots of fun!

Mardi Gras Pancakes

And you must have a King Cake!

What is King Cake? A type of cake associated in a number of countries with the festival of Epiphany at the end of the Christmas season, and in other places with the pre-Lenten celebrations of Mardi Gras/Carnival. and it’s yummy!

Get my Individual King Cakes recipe here

Mardi Gras King Cakes

Sensory bin: Fill with feathers, plastic colored coins, bead necklaces, masks, crowns, tiaras, plastic babies. Color theme: gold/yellow, purple, green

Mardi Gras Sensory Bin


Here’s a lesson I taught at our church last year about Mardi Gras and preparing for Passover.

Fun masks craft:

  • paper plates and string or paper masks
  • sequins, glitter, feathers

Mardi Gras Masks

Some other fun activities:

Visit my Pinterest board here with Mardi Gras and Easter ideas:
Follow Jennifer Lambert (Royal Little Lambs)’s board Easter on Pinterest.

Lenten traditions:

1. New Life – plant spring flowers like lilies, daffodils, tulips, hyacinths, or crocuses in the yard or a windowsill planter to remind you of the new life we have in Jesus
2. Devotions – begin a Bible study with your family
3. Give Up – many give up chocolate, coffee, Facebook, TV, or something else they feel is approaching the position of an idol in their lives as an outer symbol of dying to self during a season of spiritual reflection.
4. Mite Box – Select a charity and collect money during Lent. Have kids decorate a little bank or box to keep it in for 40 days.
5. Pretzels – buy or bake pretzels and learn the legend of the prayer
6. Giving – find ways to give sacrificially and teach your kids to be servant leaders. Serve with your time, money, bodies, and talents and be the body of Christ.
7. Jonah story – discuss the issues of sin, obedience, and God’s mercy in the Jonah story and how it points to Christ.
8. Easter Seals – support or volunteer for this organization. “Easter means Resurrection and New Life, and the rehabilitation of crippled children means new life and activity . . . physically, mentally, spiritually.”
9. Pray – Practice becoming a prayer warrior and keep a prayer journal or list and go through it each day for 40 days. You’ll be blessed and a blessing!
10. Handel’s Messiah or a Passion play – Go to a live performance and worship God in art. Invite friends and family members. Even the Son of God movie might be a great outing and get some wonderful conversation started with friends and family. Use it as a witnessing tool!


Linking up: Our 4 Kiddos and Campfires and Cleats