Saturday, December 13, 2008


Some days go otherwise than planned, and this was certainly one. Mel blew into town full of good energy, down from Avalon to help me with the present wrapping. I found out from Ian yesterday that Michele M, creator of the cover art for 101, had gone silent because she was both in the middle of a move and up against a deadline on a graphic art project for a client. This means that 101 will not be printed until after the New Year.

And that means that I cannot give that book to a number of folks on my gift list. Mel and I sat down right after Morning Offering and sorted out the dozen or so people for whom that book had been the intended present. We debated where to go to find these recipients alternative gifts and settled on Just Creations.

Just Creations is a store founded on the idea that many third world countries have beautiful, hand-crafted products but no good retail outlets. They cultivate relations with such handcraft makers among native populations and offer them an outlet. The store sells everything from hand-knitted clothing to pottery, stone work, jewelry, cards and everything in between, with a huge emphasis on Christmas items, this time of year. We prowled the store for about an hour and found whimsical and practical gifts for everyone. and each gift was unique and handmade.

We stopped for lunch at a tiny shop that sells panini and homemade soup, where we had the shrimp and corn chowder with our Panini American. Then we were off to Lowe’s, where Mel collected Mick’s big gift – a really good 17’ ladder – to Walgreen’s, where Mel found candy for our sanitation crew and collected some ribbons she needs, and finally to Garden Ridge, where Mel finished her collecting of Christmas bows and do-dads like berries and fir sprays with which to dress the packages. Our gifts have not looked so festive since my Mom died in 1991! Thank you, Mel!

We came home after 4:00 p.m. bearing our booty. While Mel organized things I managed to get upstairs, make my journal entries and have my chapel time before Mel needed me to sign the ”For/From” tags on the packages she had set out to wrap first – the packages to be mailed out of town.

In the cracks, I called the Subaru dealership and told the parts department what was amiss with Stanley. Stanley had suffered because of our encounter with the dog on our Nebraska trip. We are looking forward to adopting our future kitten, this dog’s soul, through reincarnation. That collision had damaged a plastic under-skirt to the front left fender, taken the bottom out of the windshield washer container and smashed the left front parking light. Subaru said they’d order the parts and have the Service Department call to make a repair appointment when the parts came in.

I wrote Doris, our business manager, by e-mail, asking for a pow-wow. And I fielded a call from Jan E, my nurse-practitioner who treats my interstitial cystitis. She wants an appointment with me, as it’s been a year since I saw her. I created a reminder to call her Monday in Outlook.

Meanwhile Mick worked solidly from Morning Offering until dark to tend to his customers. He is constantly being surprised this week at how many more leaves have fallen than he expected. “Where do they come from?” he asked me in wonder at bath time. “I see no leaves on the trees!” I had no answer! But I am thrilled at his extra work, since we need to pay our bills, and often the off-season is low on work to do, so we scrimp. So far, not this year!

After our bath, Mick and I came upstairs for some energy-sharing, Mick having most romantically made a date with me this morning. Ah, the wonder of that “old black magic”. As is my wont, I fell fast asleep in the afterglow and Mick had to awaken me for a late supper, after we had the Gaia Meditation. Mick offered the closing prayer tonight.

Then we caught a TV version of Mission Impossible 3, which we thoroughly enjoyed. Cruise produced this film and did the stunts himself, and he is both an excellent producer and an impressively athletic stuntman. I have a soft spot in my heart for him, since at one time, when he was in high school, he attended our weekly meditation meetings.