ok, I owe two blog posts. This is the first one

wow. it's a bit nuts, and I only have a few minutes. I have a tray of cacao walnut meringues in the oven and need to pick up my son in 1/2 hour. And wrap some presents? maybe I can't do it all, but I'll try!

cacao-raw cocoa. I don't know if there's much difference. And at different points in my life I've been anti-sugar, because, truth be told, it isn't good for you. However, now that we do Christmas Dinner here, I have been tasked with making the dessert that never changes, except that I did change the plain meringues to first chocolate, then chocolate walnut. The dessert is really incredible. It's an ice cream snowball-made by hand. Ok, I changed that, too. It was plain vanilla, but now I make it with coconut ice cream because I like coconut. Then it's rolled in coconut. Double yum. So then that goes on the meringue. Then there's chocolate sauce poured on top and then raspberry sauce, too. 

For the past two years, I wasn't really in the mood, didn't really care, even though I went through it. However, the kids love it, of course, and we only have a few more years to make it magical, so I am doing my best. Last week we watched some TV show about "light wars" and different houses around the country who go nuts for Christmas lights. "4 million lights!" one winner exclaimed. So, I put out 800 lights and made a tree outside the front door. "800 Lights!" 

I ate some of the extra meringue and hopefully will not get a stomach ache soon. But it was so good. Too good, really. If you don't mind eating raw egg whites, raw meringue is incredible. I'd like to try it with Aquafaba but I haven't had a chance yet. If I'm caught up, maybe I'll try a batch this year. There are some vegans coming and I like to accommodate where I can.

Ok I just took a 1 minute reprieve while I answered a text. I have a new video for "Lost" and I sent it to a few friends to get their opinion. The end is surprising, and since the friend hadn't commented on it, I figured he hadn't watched until the end. But then his husband got on the group text and said he did, so that was cool. I'm so glad the video is done. It's winter and it's perfect. I'm super proud of it in that it was a bit wacky and channeled The Revenant and Marina Abromovic and voila! I'll put it on YouTube asap.

Also got a msg this week from Mr. Valparaiso Music Scene who loved my new ep. It was so nice to hear. He owns a music shop that has a basement venue that I've played at twice, and everyone knows him. 

My brain is sugared up. I want to just do nothing for a bit but there's no time.

I always loved Christmas, I really love having a Christmas Tree and the ornaments. When I was growing up, even though we had a completely goofy artificial tree, we loved it. I have most of my mother's ornaments, and my Aunt's too, and then a lot of my own. It's definitely not at all decoratey. I prefer home made ones, and antique ones. 

My husband, The Phantom Fred (tm) is so minimal, and for a long time he would wage a dominance game with me on how many decorations and what I could put out, and let's just say that I only put one thing out, he'd say, "That's the perfect amount!" but then, I don't want my daughter to have memories of it being super austere and grim here, but we're far from overboard. 

We still have the Elf on the Shelf and...somehow, magically, he moves! And my daughter almost hit her brother this morning because, well, it was within his reach and I'm going to assume he thought the Elf played music when squeezed, so he wanted to play with it. But I told her I'd pick it up with tongs and put it in the freezer so it would get the magic back, because apparently, if you touch it, the magic goes away. That's what she told me, anyway.

I'm listening to some crazy Hammond B3 music. Fred put it on. He loves it. I did ask him if he was getting me one for Christmas, but then he reminded me that I said I didn't want anything except a long curtain rod for our dining room so I can make the curtains that we already have the fabric for. So maybe next year. I would be excited to perform some of my new songs on keyboards. 

I did have a gig last weekend and it went really well. I did play one of the new songs that I wrote on piano on guitar and...it went over really well! It's been a while since I've debuted a new song. This one is cool because it's sort of about being in the next town over, Chesterton and I guess I was thinking about writing one of those kinds of songs. 

Anyway, that's sort of the reason I didn't blog last week-getting ready for the show and then working on my annual Christmas Letter/Card. At least this year my daughter started to help me assemble them. It's a big production, but I think that by showing her how it's done, she'll learn something about assembly line, production, etc. 

I'd really like to add two weeks to December which could then be taken off of February. 

And, ok, I don't want to offend anyone who might read this who might not love the month of December and our country's obsession with Christmas. I hear you! It's a bit hard, because the card goes out to a lot of people of varying faiths, and I think, well who am I to send them a Christmas Card? But it's about just a year end letter/overview and a picture of the kids and etc. 

You'll have to check instagram for this year's photo. I'll post it in a few days. It's a departure for us. Usually, we get a very lovely one of the kids, but this year no. Every year it IS work, because my son has a very small window of cooperation. I'm behind the scenes, baby wrangling, but this year, no can do. He saw through it and wasn't having it. He wanted to go outside and he did NOT want to sit there and comply. And that's ok.

Ok. I have to leave in a few minutes. I owe another blog post, so I'll try to get to that soon. I hope you are doing well, doing your best to keep your head above water. There's madness in the WH and how will it end? When will it end? It shocks me, and yet, it shouldn't surprise us, because we knew what we were getting. 

OH and I did do a "live" version of Deck the Halls. It's definitely on my bandcamp page and might be on Spotify by now. I had a problem getting it out in a timely manner which made me incredibly grumpy for a few days. So, I'm considering changing some things, looking around to see what my options are. 

But the live version is super nice! It was Ainjel's idea to do something quick while I was in her studio.

ok. gotta go!



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