1. Still looking for a place to stay…
…like my 7 Quick Takes which I was all ready to post to Jen’s link list, except she isn’t doing them this week. Darn it.
2. Crash had a birthday. He loves football. Therefore, we had the Lambeau Field cake (Green Bay Packers). Fondant is not fun, but it was a hit. Yes, that’s him up on the jumbotron on the scoreboard. And the Packers are playing the Vikings. It isn’t Cake Boss, but Crash just about squealed, and that’s all a mom can ask for.
3. First rule of holiday cooking: if you haven’t gone through more than one box of butter, you aren’t trying hard enough. I think I went through two boxes (four sticks each) making Thanksgiving dinner. Thank goodness for butter sales around the holidays.
4. In a random thought moment, it occured to me that there is another possible clue to Shakespeare’s Catholicity. William and his wife had three children: Susanna, Judith, and Hamnet. Hamnet, Judith’s twin, died young. “Yeah, so what?” you’re saying. Susanna’s story is in Daniel, chapter 13, and Judith has her own book. But there’s one thing here: both Susanna and Judith are Old Testament heroines… but only if you’re using a Catholic Bible. Parts of Daniel and the book of Judith were among the sections of the Old Testament removed by Protestant reformers. Did Shakespeare choose his daughters’ names as a bit of a poke in the eye to the anti-Catholic powers in charge of England at the time?
5. The last few years of the blog, I’ve done Christmas carols or the O Antiphons (leading up to Christmas, the basis for “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel”. I haven’t been that organized this year, but if you want some more Christmas content, please check under the categories tab in the right-hand column.
But don’t look for Santa: at the risk of being called a communist by Calah, I have to say we don’t do the fat guy in the red suit. First off, isn’t Jesus good enough? Secondly, I want my children to know that I do not lie to them. Ever. When I have to explain transsubstantiation, miracles, and God becoming a baby to ultimately die on the cross for our sins, I don’t want the thought to even cross their little brains, “Gee, is Mommy lying again? Is this just another ‘fun’ story that’s really a joke on gullible kids?” Contrary to grandparents and random strangers, I don’t think our society is Christian enough anymore to assume that they’ll figure the whole thing out and turn out okay, either. Our society shouts from every side that parents are clueless and not to be trusted. I don’t intend to help that message along any.
6. I just discovered that a friend doesn’t celebrate Christmas. Of all the things you could argue against on a Biblical basis, Christmas doesn’t really seem to be one of them. Angels (and more than enough of them), shepherds, magi with some very expensive gifts, the star… if that isn’t a celebration, I don’t know what is.
I don’t think that the fact that most of our culture botches the whole thing by turning Christmas into a gift-getting feeding frenzy of materialism argues for Christians just giving up on the whole thing. If we don’t redeem Christmas, it becomes a pointless orgy of materialism with some old guy bringing presents. Sadly enough, St. Nicholas, the generous bishop of Myra famous for giving away his inheritance to the needy and slugging the heretic Arius, has been forgotten (via some ex-Catholic, now Protestant Dutch, who only remembered the “nice guy with presents” part because they no longer believed in bishops and wanted to forget the anti-heretic part) and turned into a shadow of his proper self.
If some ex-Christians started celebrating the multiplication of the loaves and fishes by “mysteriously” leaving people bread and fish, without any other acknowledgement of Jesus’ life and teachings, wouldn’t you think it was bizarre and totally missing the point of Jesus?
7. I hope that you are sitting contentedly with your warm beverage of choice, enjoying the fact that your preparations are done, and marveling anew at the miracle of God-with-us, come at the Annunciation, and revealed at Christmas.