Monday, December 6, 2010

On Advent Calendars, Kerouac, and little else

a small village in Scotland, photos taken a week ago

I've been on an advent calendar kick lately. It was sparked by a certain wonderful KatyKatyKaty who has sent The Care Package Beyond All Care Packages. It was chock full of hard-to-get American goodies like bisquick  and cornbread mix and ohhhhhhhhhhh sweet macaroni and cheese and trader joe's your pumpkin bread mix makes me want to die inside of happy and in the midst of all this euphoria--that I have spread out all over the place because it thrills me to look at it and putting it away would be like hiding it under a bushel (no!)--was a super fun TJ's advent calendar full of yummy chocolate buttons. As soon as I saw it I was transported back to my childhood advent calendar, a colorful cloth one that hung right outside the kitchen door, with little pockets and wonderful treats inside, and how much it thrilled my sister and me to open a little door or pocket every night to get the goodie inside. I also loved counting it over and over to see if Christmas was getting any closer--only 22 days left! 20! 12! Still 12! STILL 12! 10! 3! ACK! HYPEROVERLOADIT'SALMOSTCHRISTMASDAY!

So now (thank you, Katy) advent calendars are on my accidental-radar, and I just saw this beautiful one from Portland crafter Shim + Sons that she made for her family (not for sale, alas how I suffer), and she's put activities ('make a gingerbread house,' 'go iceskating,' 'hot chocolate and peppermint sticks') in various slots along with the small trinkets or candies you typically see and I don't know why this has blown my mind but it has. It's such a great idea.

Just now for kicks I typed 'Martha Stewart advent calendar' into google, and roughly FORTY FIVE BILLION crafty advent calendars popped up. I had no idea you could do so much with baby socks and matchboxes. Awesome, Martha.

Schoolwork is still crazy. They continue to trust us to self-guide our workload, which means I piddle around until Go Time and then whip out a ton of really ridiculous work. You should see what I can do with white-out and graph paper now. I also made the mistake of taking a mental break after turning in my mid-term sketchbook while the homework itself did no such thing. Now it's like a fire-breathing dragon lurking behind me and I know my only hope this late in the game is to maim rather than destroy. Luckily I'm getting better at accepting mediocrity. (Progress?)

Now if you'll excuse me, I have a Day Six chocolate elf to eat and some graph paper to destroy. I leave you with these (non-traditional, before you syllable-counters lose control) haiku by Jack Kerouac, sent to me by dear Okie. He says not to bother with most of Kerouac's poetry, but his haiku are magical. If this is anything to go on, I agree.

Big hugs,

In my medicine cabinet,
the winter fly
has died of old age.

Drunk as a hoot owl,
writing letters
by thunderstorm.

No telegram today
only more leaves


  1. YAY!!! SO glad you approve. I *had* to get the calendar, and then when it didn't fit in the original flat-rate box, well. Shoot, I had to upgrade box-sizes, and then add more mac 'n cheese! hahahahaha
    Happy Christmas!!! :) loves!