Delights: November 27 to December 3

November 27: I roll into Thanksgiving week like a bride planning her wedding or a general planning her battle: ideas, notes, lists, schedules and stress. By Wednesday I’m ready to bake pie. Apple, always. Lemon meringue sometimes (“Mom, it has structural integrity this year!”). And, with pumpkin pie in the hands of a friend, I dared myself to make Bourbon Pumpkin Cheesecake. Bold move, general.

November 28: Thanksgiving Day. So much to be delighted by, so much to be grateful for. A few of the tiniest things: Hearing a radio announcer invoke the “Macy’s Day Parade,” just as we always called it. Watching a bulldog (“Majka, your ilk!”) win the American Kennel Club competition. Catching Nate and Kevin engrossed in a Hallmark Christmas movie. Savoring that Bourbon Pumpkin Cheesecake. Falling asleep, with thanksgiving tucked up to my chin like an old warm quilt.

Naps are a wonderful thing.

November 29: Another beautiful fall day, perfect for raking out the garden beds and putting up the Christmas lights. (I won’t turn them on until Advent, or until my kitchen is completely post-Thanksgiving clean, whichever comes first.) Everyone seems to be outside today, happy to say hello.

November 30: In another life, I would own a bookstore. In this life, it’s even better: I hang out in one — all the time. I’ve earned privileges and permissions at my bookstore, One More Page: wrapping purchases in paper and bows, searching inventory on computers and bookshelves, guiding customers to that perfect mystery or biography. And the pinnacle of my bookstore happiness is on Small Business Saturday, when scores of joyful, well-read, indy-loving people throng the store for hours and hours. Even a very literary President visited the bookstore once to do his Christmas shopping. This Saturday, I bought no books, ate no chocolate and drank no wine (although the store sold a lot of each). I just threw myself into the hustle and bustle of the day and absorbed all that cheerful energy that book lovers exude.

December 1: Two pieces of wisdom threaded through my consciousness today. The first, quoted in this morning’s sermon, was from Desmond Tutu. He reminds us, “Do your little bit of good where you are; it’s those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world.” The second popped out of me, in words of encouragement to a friend who wants to change the world. When we feel most discouraged, I said, “try to remember that we can never possibly know all the good we do, all the people we affect, and all the ways we make a difference in this world. Each pebble of goodness we cast ripples on and on forever, magnified by others’ responses beyond our power to comprehend.” This is true. I think of each of you, dear readers, and your goodness. You matter far more than you’ll ever know.

My friend Heather made this beautiful image and sent it to me after our conversation. I love it.

December 2:  Yesterday, about fifteen of us crowded into the front rows of a performance venue and waved our arms overhead to feel and amplify Kenny’s beat. He rapped clear and fast. He pumped energy through our veins. And his lyrics challenged us to be our best possible selves. Hip hop has room for all styles and messages. We heard many of them during the competition. But as for me, I’m looking for hope and a light to see the way. Well done, Kenny. Shine on.

Letting off steam after Kenny — who calls himself “JusW8” — stole the show.

December 3: My fallen tree trunk — the color of a desert sunset — still lies by the side of the bike path. Today I noticed its new colors (salmon!) and its patient beauty. I returned to snap a picture and went on my way. Glancing back, I saw someone stopped on the trail gazing toward the log. I wonder what he saw me see. I wonder what he’s seeing now himself.

Dear Readers, do you want to receive notifications by email each time I post a Delight? Just scroll all the way down this page, look to the left and click on the black button that says “Join Me!” 

*** And send me your photos and delights! I’d love to post them. ***

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