- First of all, I've got the yule log on basically 24 hours on the TV. Fake fire is awesome. Real fire is better but it's amazing how a fire on your TV can cozy up the place. Plus every once in a while a disembodied arm comes into the scene to add a log or adjust things and one of the logs might slip and tumble, so it's exciting.
- I carry jingle bells in my coat pocket. So whatever I do, wherever I go, I jingle all the way.
- I think about Jesus a lot. I read scriptures a lot. I can absolutely get caught up in all the busy-ness of Christmas. I really love it all, you know that I do. But if I don't do enough of the good stuff to balance it out, I start to feel sick in my guts. Sometimes i like to gauge myself by seeing how I feel when i see a lot of secular ways of celebrating that sort of take Christ out of Christmas. For example, I was doing a tiny bit of shopping the other day in SoHo. Shopping can make me feel ill pretty quickly, but when I walked by a million stores not feeling desirous to go in, and saw one with the sign "NOISE to the world!" I thought, not for me, man. That isn't my Christmas. And i felt good.
- To start the season we got Julian a Lego advent calendar. It's a Christmas scene and every day he gets to open a box and put together a lego thing. Since he can't quite do it himself this means I get to do it and it's so fun! There's a teeny Christmas tree, a lego fireplace, a lego santa, a car, a tiny toy boat, train, and teeeensy airplanes. There's a lego snowman, weird stuff like a grill and hot dogs, a Christmas dinner on a table, a burglar and policeman with handcuffs. Oh, lego. We love you so. I think we can all agree that advent calendars in any shape or form are the BEST EVER.
- I read a short story by Truman Capote called A Christmas Memory. It is magical. He tells of things of a 1930's Christmas in the south. Of scrapping together money to buy whiskey for 30 fruit cakes, of cutting down one's own tree, of making presents out of scraps from around the house. Then I watched a documentary about Harper Lee (who was childhood friends with Capote and based the Mockingbird character Dill after him) who said this quote that I liked:
I think we are a region of natural storytellers, just from tribal instinct. We did not have the pleasure of the theater, the dance, of motion pictures when they came along. We simply entertained each other by talking.
It makes me want to figure out how to be like that.
- So now my numbering is starting over. I sent out an email to my family asking for a reply-all email thread of Christmas memories from the days of yore. I've loved reading them.
- Sean and I played a piano/guitar rockin' version of God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen in front of people. SO much fun. Sean was so patient with my nonsensical instructions/notation. Also we threw together a Silent Night number with two friends, one of whom arrived at the last possible second and had to immediately bust out her violin and tune it. Like, I was walking up to perform it when she walked in. Hee hee ha ha. The other friend i asked on the spot "hey want to sing?" (the song called for a solo but i couldn't find anyone but i thought, i'll be darned if I can't get someone to sing this right before we go up on the stage.) This friend conceded if she could sing with someone. I suggested the violinist, who wouldn't be coming in until the second verse anyway. She might as well be singing while she waits--HA. And she did it, they did it, like champs. I love them for it. Also, i began to play the intro on the piano when i stopped short, suddenly realizing we should tell the audience to join in on the second and third verse, oh and what song we were singing. HAHA. Why do i delight in this so much? Spur of the moment crazy things. And guess what? It turned out beautifully. Best run through yet. (I realize this paragraph makes 0% sense)
- We tried and failed to visit some elderly people in our church. We made a couple of calls and got rejected so we decided to just visit and see what happens. In diversity-fun, our names included Chinese, Russian, and other nationalities. [Can you tell I'm trying to blaze through this post before i catch a plane?] Too bad we never got to actually meet anyone. But we did tie a package to their doorknobs in a totally sketchy way. Then we sang carols all the way home in a snow storm and we had to pull over in it for an emergency pee for Julian. God bless us, everyone!