— 1 —
Guilty confession: We do Santa at our house, but I have misgivings about it. In theory, I think it’s a great tradition. Dan Lord has a good post about it from a faith-based perspective, and I agree with it. I’m trying to like Santa here. But in practice it just feels kind of weird. On the one hand, I don’t want to associate Santa too closely with Jesus, since, well, one is more real than the other. On the other hand, it’s a constant battle not to let the guy with the shiny gifts overshadow the humble baby in the manger. As much as I try to emphasize Santa as Jesus’ helper, a Christian saint, etc. the pop culture images of him as THE AWESOME DUDE WITH THE INFINITE GIFT-GIVING POWER seem to trump in my children’s collective subconscious.
I’m not anti-Santa. I’m sure other families can pull this all off flawlessly. But, to be honest, sometimes I wish we’d started with some simple St. Nicholas Day traditions, and skipped the Santa stuff at Christmas.
— 2 —
You know what I wish Santa would bring me for Christmas? Lovenox. Our health insurance changed, and these shots I have to give myself during pregnancy are going to cost me over $1, 000 per month until we meet our deductable. I told my husband to get me a month’s supply and wrap it up in a Tiffany’s box and put it under the tree.
— 3 —
I’m fascinated by the Tiny House Blog. I loved this video they posted of a family of three (soon to be four) who lives in a 500 sq. ft. home:
— 4 —
Just to make sure you don’t get anything done for the next half hour, here are some other awesome tiny home videos:
- A guy living in 96 sq. ft.
- Organization tips from a lady who lives in a 90 sq. ft. home
- A portable 120 sq. ft. home
- Another cute 120 sq. ft. house (with, um, an incinerating toilet??)
(Note: I watched most of these with the sound off because it’s the kids’ quiet time. The people all looked lovely and pleasant, so I assume they were talking about their small houses and not shouting profanity. Hopefully nobody said “This is my $&%*^%! drawer, where I keep my $*#$@! shoes that I wear to my job as a pro-pornography advocate…”)
— 5 —
So I had the big conversation with my agent about the book. He read it for the first time a couple of weeks ago, and told me his thoughts. The plus side is that he had glowing things to say about it and was very enthusiastic. The, uhh, painful side was that he suggested that I make some pretty major structural changes. After all the work I’ve put into it, I guess I kind of thought he’d say, “I have no feedback! Let’s send it to the publishers!” I never thought I’d be looking at so much more work, though I do think his advice is sound. Every time I think about it I kind of feel like I’m going to hyperventilate, so I’ve decided to put it aside until after Christmas.
— 6 —
One of the most interesting things I’ve learned in the book writing process is this: you don’t need to feel good to write well. Some parts of the book about which my agent had the most glowing things to say were written or heavily edited a few weeks ago, when my morning sickness was the worst. Other good parts were written when I felt so tired and uninspired that even looking at the keyboard made me want to gag. I’ve come to believe that age-old truth that the creation of any kind of art is simply the channeling Something outside of yourself (Steven Pressfield would call it The Muse; I call it the Holy Spirit). In order to produce good work, you only need to be healthy enough to take dictation.
— 7 —
Have you ever heard the Mormon Tabernacle Choir’s version of The First Noel? If not, you should.
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