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» Friday, December 04, 2015Getting Ready for Christmas
It was take-a-break-in-the-decorating day. That's what I've been doing most of the week, cleaning, putting away Thanksgiving decorations in their puzzle-box combinations, and putting up Christmas ones. I'm about half done: kitchen, dining room, living room (except for the tree), bedroom, hall bathroom, hallway, and part of the spare room. The woodland tree ornaments are in the spare room but I still have to get the woodland tree out of the library box (it's in with James' airplane tree and the library tree). I've dusted, polished, and neatened, written out Christmas cards and mailed most of them, and taken the fall magazines downstairs.
We had a heavy frost last night and the lawns were still coated and the roofs sugary-looking when I walked Tucker. The sun was just over the trees and where it struck the roofs they were clear, but I noted with some interest that there was a clear dividing line between the now-dried sunned roofs and the still-frosty shady roofs; it looked as if someone had marked the division with a white watercolor marker. Quite striking!
This morning I wrapped and made ready for mailing the five out-of-town packages. Discovered to my dismay that I had only two padded envelopes. Luckily I had my camera box for one gift and an old Amazon box for the other, and I had enough brown paper to wrap the third, which wouldn't fit in a padded envelope anyway. I loaded these in a Xerox paper box and was off to the Apple Annie craft show by way of the Mount Bethel post office (and Publix, where I stopped for cash).
Apple Annie was fun, but most of the things I saw that I loved were expensive, so I passed on them. One woman did beautiful nature photographs and had two handsome pictures of a gorgeous hawk. The papyrus lady was there, but I didn't see anything of hers that I loved that I didn't already have. There were gorgeous inlaid cutting boards and intricate jewelry; not a lot of cutsey-poo "grandma gifts" for the grandchildren this year. One man makes one-of-a-kind wooden crosses, another "glass art" that also functions as containers. I miss "the prim lady." My prims are all the more special now. The bakery goods were uniformly overly sweet; I usually buy something and take it home for a dessert but skipped this year.
Instead I spent a nice quiet interlude in the courtyard, and then went into the sanctuary to pray for a while before heading home.
Passed by the new Sprouts, but they are still closed while waiting for a stinky liquor license. Did stop at Book Nook, but nothing unique there this time. At this point the glare of the sun was making thousands of little nails stick into my head, so I just headed downtown to pick up my tour of homes ticket, since they're $5 more tomorrow. I'm excited about the tour of homes, but I'm really looking forward to the free admission to the museum just to see if the lady I spoke to was correct and there was a World War I homefront exhibit. WWII homefront exhibits are wonderful, but are a dime-a-dozen, WWI would be unique.
I started to think that what I was in the mood for was a gingerbread boy. Not gingersnaps or ginger cookies, and not cake gingerbread, but a crunchy-crust chewy-inside gingerbread boy, like the kind Addie and Grandma are making in The House Without a Christmas Tree. There's a paucity of bakeries around here, but at Christmas surely one of the few would have gingerbread boys.
Struck out. Royally. The Australian Bakery had none at all. I stopped at The Corner Shop (the British store) and they had lots of goodies from across the pond, but no gingerbread. Bernhard's had gingerbread, but it was backed with chocolate and ::shudder:: iced. McEntyre's was my last hope, and they had lots of goodies (cupcakes, cookies, pastries), but no gingerbread boys. Can you beat that?
By the time I got home, the little nails had turned into drumsticks. Lassie was just starting on Angel2, but instead I took off my shoes and took refuge on that luscious futon until right before James came home (he was tardy due to a late call).
We had supper at Giovanni's, sitting smack next to the Christmas tree, and then went to Barnes & Noble at the Avenue at West Cobb, where I bought the mystery I saw last week taking place in WWI-era Alaska. Saw two keen books, one on Roman sites in Great Britain and another claiming that our languages today come directly from Stone Age sounds.
By the time we got home it was time to perambulate the pooch again. As we drove up to the house, we could hear an owl hooting from the trees at the back of the house. We haven't heard an owl in years, since we first moved in. This one was quite vocal, calling through our whole walk, although fainter up in the cul-de-sac. He must be quite close to the back of our house. It was already frosty outside, and the stars looked like little ice chips. Orion's Belt was tipped all the way on its left side and looked like it was balancing on our chimney as we stood in the driveway and I listened for the owl.