Last week I challenged myself to come up with ten small-or-large things that brought a smile to my face or hope to my spirit. Most turned out to be small, but they were enough. Well guess what? The world ain't no better this week. So:
1. Rogue One. How can a movie for which we know the ending be so riveting? And how can a story in which [spoiler redacted] be so uplifting? I'm working on a blog post tomorrow or Thursday about this film.
2. The televised yule log turns 50 this year! Parade Magazine had an unexpectedly delightful story about it.
3. Patty Smith sang at Bob Dylan's Nobel ceremony and reflected beautifully on the experience. She was stopped in her tracks mid-song and couldn't continue.
4. CBS recently profiled the white helmets in Syria. Incredible stuff. They literally dig people out of the rubble with their bare hands.
"Syria has descended into murder on an industrial scale. But on the outer limits of cruelty, humanity begins." Donate to their cause.
5. This sermon I preached about Joseph, the father of Jesus, always gets a ton of hits this time of year, which makes me smile. It must be listed on a sermon-preparation website somewhere.
6. A maple syrup heist! I read Vanity Fair for years but had let my subscription lapse. I resubscribed this week with the $5 deal which I'm calling the Troll Trump rate. Anyway, here's an entertaining article about the price of maple syrup. (Yes, really.) Did you know there are syrup reserves in Canada? We were a Log Cabin family growing up, which made me automatically suspect in the Dana house. (News flash, Log Cabin is cheap.) I do love real maple syrup now, but yes, it's outrageously expensive.
7. Butter mints: I made these mints with Margaret yesterday. The dough is fun to work with and they're yummy. The texture is different than commercial ones though: they harden on the outside but remain soft and silky on the inside. So it's like little morsels of minty frosting. Delish.
8. These household objects and appliances, cross-stitched by Ulla Stina Wikander, courtesy of Colossal. So fun.
9. I'll let this story of a coffee shop "date" speak for itself.
10. Goodbye 2016, Hello 2017: I asked people last week whether they'd like me to do another workbook/playbook for doing an annual review and looking to the year to come. I'm touched that so many of you responded with an enthusiastic yes! Subscribe to my email newsletter to get this year's copy, which should arrive next week.