Ten on Tuesday

1. I have a dilemma. I bought something today as a Christmas gift – a set of six things, really. Or, I meant to buy six things, and I paid for six things, but the clerk at the store accidentally gave me seven, which I did not realize until I got home. So: do I take the extra back to the store? Do I give all seven as the gift and risk having the recipient wonder why I didn’t get eight? Do I give six as the gift and find some other use for the seventh? I know you can’t possibly answer this without knowing what it is… but it is Christmastime, and secrets abound.

2. We’re doing a fair bit of hosting this holiday season, which makes me enjoy our house even more. The first time we looked at the house – over two years ago now! – I loved the layout of the kitchen, dining room, and living room, and I could imagine us entertaining groups from the church. Now, we’ve got our Christmas tree up, and the living room looks decorated (as opposed to the rest of the year, when our still-mostly-bare walls stare down at us), so it feels nice to have company. My Pastoral Relations Committee was here for dinner last night, the youth group kids are having their Christmas party here on Sunday, and I’m having the church staff over for lunch later in the month.

3. As much as I love our 70-year-old house, especially all dressed up for Christmas, I do not like how cold and drafty it is. There are actual breezes coming in through some of the windows, and I feel like I’m camping every night as I hurry into my pajamas and under the four layers of blankets on the bed. I also hate the thought of how much energy we are wasting trying to heat this whole place, and how much we are losing through the drafty walls. We’re going to have bite the bullet and pay for thousands of dollars of new windows, but in the meantime, I feel like I need a brick from the fireplace to warm the bed.

4. I’m well aware that I write this from a very comfortable bed, with plenty of blankets, and warm pajamas, and that there are plenty of folks who would trade places with me in a heartbeat.

5. What’s with having Christmas parties on Twitter? That just seems nuts to me. Also, I think I would really like out of Facebook. Could I do that, you think? Could I just opt out? Blogging, though, blogging is okay. (Please don’t ask me to explain this logic.)

7. Speaking of blogging, I missed a blogoversary last month. I started blogging with some regularity last Thanksgiving. In recognition of that milestone, here are some of the most obscure search terms that people have used to find themselves here at my blog:

aquarium fishes wallpaper
positive thing about sundays
children sister costumes
preschool girl with mom
message to a niece whose far away
girl with new boots 2010
moving away messages aunts and uncle

Ah, the mysterious and powerful world of search engines.

8. This fall, the church hired Lesley-Ann Hix to work with our programs for children, youth, and families. She’s been doing a great job, and I’ve really enjoyed working with her. Turns out she is an excellent photographer, too, and she did a family photo session with us a few weeks ago. She came to our house on a lovely sunny morning, and used our house and yard as the backdrop. We think she made us look pretty good, if we do say so ourselves.

9. You ought to check out Lesley-Ann’s website. Even if you aren’t in the market for a Greensboro-area photographer, you should see the photography project she did last year called “Big Fish, Little Fish.” It’s a visual exploration of the differences between a big church and a small church.

10. And one more to finish off this very long and utterly random collection of thoughts: As incentive to get Harper out of the bathtub tonight without whining, Rob promised to play a brand new game. “Switcheroo Toothbrush,” he called it, and it did the trick; she was out of the tub in a flash, ready to play. I heard about it later, and was relieved to find out that the toothbrushes themselves did not get switcheroo’d, only the toothbrush-ers. In other words, Rob brushed Harper’s teeth and Harper brushed his, apparently giving very specific instructions about how to hold his lips and when to spit. She is one lucky kid to have such a creative and patient dad.

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