Finally got the tree up. As in, yesterday, December 19. Does that strike you as odd and wildly off-schedule? Not me. I look at the FB statuses which celebrated trees being erected Thanksgiving weekend, and I think…if I had done that, I would be sick of it all by now. I sort of am anyway (in that twenty years ago, I was aghast to hear people – mostly middle-aged women with many years of childrearing behind them – say, “If I never have to put up another Christmas tree again, that’ll be fine with me.” How could they? I would think. Well, now, twenty years later, I’m her, and: This.
Besides, I really do try to do Advent, and while obviously the two aren’t mutually exclusive for many – like for example, the Pope in Rome and his St. Peter’s Square front yard – for me, in my head, they are. I like to wait as long as possible.
Anne Engelhart and I finished another book this week, and this time, it’s really all ours. The previous books have been hers, illustration-wise, but my role has really been minimal, as I’ve acted as more of an editor/agent in the process, since Pope Benedict’s words formed the core of the books. Not this time! The book is a Christmas-themed story for children, will be published next year, and I’ll have details available in a couple of months once the trade shows start. I’m really pleased with it. After Christmas, we’re starting work on another.
Speaking of children, thanks to someone’s FB post, I discovered this gang out West somewhere who produce “Kid History” and “Kid Snippets.” Hysterical. The basic idea is that the grown-ups act out the stories the kids tell. ”Kid History” involve lore from family history, and Snippets are scenarios the children are asked to ad lib. My two favorites are below.
“Math Class” will be eerily familiar for any teachers…..
Book club this week was Tinkers by Paul Harding. Some gorgeous writing and precise description, but to me, was ultimately empty. The book is about life and death, but I came away thinking that the author doesn’t really much about the import or meaning of either, so while there are passages I want to go back and learn from in terms of writing, the book itself I didn’t find memorable.
School is going well. I’m going to change it up a bit come January to add more disciplined treatments of writing and science. More discussion of that after Christmas – any suggestions/advice, add to comments.
Next field trip involves going up to the Florence area to see friends, but in the process seeing the Helen Keller home in Tuscumbia (as well as the Frank Lloyd Wright house and maybe the Indian mound…who knows!
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