Monday, December 27, 2010

3 musings, 3 kings, 3 fabulous things

1. The Last Airbender is hands down one of the worst movies in the history of film-making. Horrid acting, miserable effects and I've seen my kids develop better plots and dialogue just messing around with my video camera. I wish Santa hadn't brought it, heck, I wouldn't have even paid to rent it. (No, I could not bear to sit through the entire movie--I got up after about 20 minutes and retreated to my bedroom.)

2. In great contrast, I am engrossed by Jonathan Franzen's Freedom. I cannot just read a few pages--I have to block out a couple hours at a time because I cannot put it down. It's an amazing mix of literary, brilliance, insight, plotting, characterization and theme. Normally I have a low tolerance for "literary" novels--I find them pedantic, show-offy and poorly edited. It's refreshing to read an exception. Am very anxious for the Bumble Book Club discussion about it.

3. Our bird feeders are bringing us daily visits from all nature of songbirds--we sit entranced, looking out the windows at them flitting around.

***
I've read the Christmas story in Luke and Matthew probably a hundred times, but on Christmas Eve our pastor pointed out something kind of interesting that I hadn't noticed before. When the magi (not necessarily three of them, but I tossed that in the post title because I'm obnoxious about symmetry that way) were searching for Jesus, they stopped by Herod's palace first, figuring he'd know the skinny on where the new king could be found. Herod called in the religious leaders of the time, who then advised everyone where to look: Bethlehem. They didn't hesitate in providing an answer. But then our pastor highlighted this fact: the religious leaders didn't go with the magi to see the new king. They didn't even send along a servant kid to check it out. I mean, here are wealthy, wise leaders from the east (Persia? further out?) who have risked their safety and spent money to follow a sign in the sky in search of the king of the Jews. King Herod welcomes them with a red carpet. But the religious leaders of the time don't give their interest or effort more than a passing answer. The magi head out alone from Jerusalem to find Jesus and Mary in Bethlehem.

Our pastor's point? Just because you know the Bible inside and out doesn't mean squat if you aren't acting on that knowledge. Pretty convicting.

My point? I can read something over and over and still learn from it and gain a new perspective.

***
December's FABULOUS is hand-made by moi: wool hand mitts, raspberry jam, good-for-you granola. How can you win? Each comment in the comment box is an entry to win. I'll announce the lucky winner next Monday.

Spill it, reader: are you recovered from your Christmas or are you still buried in wrapping paper and relatives?

18 comments:

  1. It's not too messy around here, no worse than usual, so I guess I am recovered.

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  2. I'm a happy camper here. DH and I are on vacation all week and we're not doing much of anything. We may meet my sister in SC one day for lunch - that's the most strenuous thing we've got going. And we had a white Christmas!

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  3. I was very inspired by what your pastor said! Thank you for sharing. I have been longing for remembrances and meditations on why we celebrate Christmas, and here was one on your blog. I quoted you, if that's okay: http://leviathanamours.blogspot.com/2010/12/journey-of-magi.html

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  4. No relatives or wrapping paper left.

    Just a whole lotta egg nog! Snarf

    Raspberry Jam. MMMMMM

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  5. Presents are still living under the tree. Cape Cod Kid is suppposed to fly home on the 27th, as long as it stops snowing in MA.
    Sorority Girl decided to go home last night and sleep in her own bed. She'll be back Wed morning to say goodbye to her brother.

    My biggest problem is that there is so much food in the fridge that I can barely shut the door!

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  6. I never thought about the magi that way! We are pretty much settled back into the norm...well as normal as it can be until I steal their batteries ;)

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  7. I like your pastor.
    I want your goodies. (But not in a creepy or weird way. I just have cold hands, and really like jam...)

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  8. I'm recovered, just got back from Chicago. I got the whole week off to organize and put some things away.

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  9. awesome stuff in this post. would love to win the hand mitts, granola, and jam. sounds fantabulous!

    if not... best of luck to the other posters!

    happy new year to you all!

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  10. I've dug out from underneath the wrap, sent the relatives home, but I'm hardly recovered - I told my husband tonight is a night for the three r's: reading, w(r)iting and relaxing.

    Okay, I told you I've hardly (r)ecovered because I'm sooooo tired.

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  11. No relatives, no wrapping paper, and almost no mess. I'll finish sorting through new gifts in the next couple of days, as well as start disassembling the decorations. The tree will hopefully be down by the 31st. I'm ready for a clean slate.

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  12. All that’s left to do is enjoy the calm !~! Would love to win a giveaway that includes jam and mittens. Thanks.

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  13. Ooooh, mittens! We are so buried. We've been in London, yesterday Max and I went to Hamleys, Liberty (did not buy anything, you know, just inhaled) John Lewis (new coat for Max, 60% off) ... we cam home last night with my sister and her hubby. all is well!

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  14. I really like Jonathan Franzen. I thought The Corrections was great. I also read The Twenty-Seventh City and a book of his essays about reading and books--can't remember the title.

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  15. Recovery was amazingly quick and easy--we had gifts, sure, but the whole thing was so scaled back and mellow that it felt like Not Too Much!

    I heard that the AVATAR movie sucked, so thanks for bearing that out...AND for assuring me that I do need to read FREEDOM. The reviews are so stellar that they make me overcome my previous unsuccessful attempts at Franzen books.

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  16. You've convinced me to add Freedom to my reading list. ;) I still have wrapping paper in the corner. Although I'm considering taking down the tree tomorrow!

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  17. The tree is still up, and we'll take it down soon. It'll start losing its needles. The house is grubby, though. No energy or time for true cleaning.

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Spill it, reader.