I have been doing pretty well with the #LIGHTtheWORLD challenge I decided to take on: do an act of service every day in December leading up to Christmas day. I've babysat people's kids, driven a friend to the hospital, driven a friend's cat to the vet, made soup for my son and his girlfriend when they had the flu, organized meals for a friend with a new baby, helped prepare and put on a church Christmas party, fed my friend's cat (yes, the same one) . . . I'm not exactly following the "25 ways over 25 days," but that's just a guideline, really. (I can never say that line without hearing it in Geoffrey Rush's voice.) It's surprising how easy it is to find ways to help people, once you're specifically looking for them. (And there are lots of interesting ideas on the website—the theme is how to be like Jesus, but the ideas for service are non-denominational.)
I did finally bring my Christmas decorations out of storage and start putting some up, and one of my key decorating objects are the Christmas picture books I've been collecting. Here are a just a few:
This year in my annual visit to Kidsbooks (ostensibly to get gifts for nieces/nephews, but I always come away with a few presents to myself)("Would you like these wrapped?" the cashier asks. "Oh, no, that's fine. These are for me."), I didn't add to my Christmas book collection, but I got a couple of lovely picture books (in case you can't see it, the light blue one is Teacup, by Rebecca Young with stunning illustrations by Matt Ottley), and I splurged on the illustrated Harry Potter.
Here's hoping that you get the books you want most, and that the books you give will be truly appreciated! You've all been a light to me this year; thank you for sharing your love of books and your care for the world. Merry Christmas, Happy Hannukah—oh, it's the Winter Solstice today, isn't it! Blessed Winter Solstice! The light now begins to return!
And have a Happy, Happy New Year!