Tuesday, December 04, 2007

You Had Me At Good-Bye

Jesse and I decided that we were going to decorate for Christmas after Molly's concert on Saturday. I made a big pan of lasagna and a pumpkin pie. We pulled out the laptop to play our Christmas music, and put Rudolph on the TV. While I was making supper, Doogie and Mia curled up on the couch watching the movie. Molly retreated to our bedroom to watch a different movie on the TV in there. Jesse hovered around me in the kitchen because he wasn't sure where to put the decorations. I guilted Molly into joining us in the living room, but after supper, we couldn't find the tree decorations, and everyone kept asking me where to put the rest of the decorations. The evening devolved into putting a few decorations out, the rest on the kitchen table for me to take care of later, and everyone cranky.

After we put Mia to bed, Jesse and I re-evaluated and realized that we're just not that kind of family. We're not one of those picture perfect families who sing in perfect harmony while hanging the decorations in perfect accord. And I have a secret: I hate decorating for Christmas. I don't mind buying the decorations, and I like to look at them when they are up, but I don't enjoy the process. Both of us wanted to create one of those experiences that you see in movies, and we made everyone miserable in our attempt. So we relaxed. Molly, Jesse, and I played cards games on the table in the basement. Doogie sat next to us and played on the Gamecube. We played Christmas music and talked and laughed late into the night. So it wasn't a picture postcard Christmas moment, but it was wonderful time of family, and that's what Christmas is supposed to be about, right?

You Had Me At Good-Bye by Tracey Bateman is the second book in the Drama Queen series after Catch a Rising Star. Book editor Dancy Ames is fired after an altercation with a writer and, with help from her friends, must rediscover her footing. Dancy lets everyone walk all over her, from her rich, uptight parents, to her boss and Lane Publishing. But the worst part is that the man who stole her job just could be her dream guy, but he's sending mixed signals, and poor Dancy is in a tailspin. Bateman's writing is the equivalent of literary comfort food. Had a rough week? It's one of her books you want to curl up with to forget about the world for awhile. As Dancy's walk with God strengthens, so does her self-confidence, giving her the ability to finish her novel, stand up to her mother, dump an unwanted boyfriend, and be her new brother's hero. I love Bateman's trademark writing style. It's almost snarky, but with enough sweet to keep it light. Dancy is a hilarious narrator, and her antics make for great reading!

I know that God has many, many names, but I tend to use just a few. It's not a conscious thing, just something I've noticed in my journal. When I'm praising him and happy, I call him Lord. When I'm asking him for something or a bit down, I call him Father. On days like today when my pain and stress levels are high, I call him Abba.