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5 Quick Things #261 🕯
wooden toys, pecan pie, consolation, & advent
Happy holidays to you, wherever you are and whatever you're doing! I'm actually writing this on Wednesday before Thanksgiving because I plan with every fiber of my being to not work at all on Friday. The plan is to spend time outdoors, read (both offline and on — I've got some favorite newsletters to catch up on!), and pull down the Christmas decor from the attic in time for the first day of Advent this Sunday. Can you believe it's already here? 🤯
5 Quick Things ☕️
1. ✨ New episode of A Drink With a Friend! ✨ Seth and I are back, chatting together about Advent, of course. We all live liturgically, even if we're not aware of it — so why is it good for us to lean in to a time-tested, traditional, globally-recognized liturgical calendar? And how should we kick off this "new year" of the liturgical calendar? (Note: Here's more of a 101 on Advent I gave last year, if it’s helpful.)
2. And with all this Advent business in mind, in case you need the pep talk: you don't need to do all the Advent things. Amen.
3. The delightful Joy Clarkson has a new-ish Substack newsletter, and she gives a little deep-dive into something you readers of this newsletter, The Commonplace, would appreciate: commonplace books! (related: A refresher on why this newsletter is called TCP here.)
4. Some good words on the active, necessary, auspicious posture of consolation, which we often forget about: "The essential element of consolation is hope: the belief that we can recover from loss, defeat, and disappointment, and that the time that remains to us, however short, offers us possibilities to start again. It is this hope that allows us, even in the face of tragedy, to remain unbowed."
5. And finally, in case you need a good listen while doing your weekend shopping, cleaning, walking, or whatever — Commonplace member Morgan Blair was recently on the Cordial Catholic podcast and it was a delight! (And wild to hear my name mentioned when I least expected it.)
My 2022 Gift Guide! 🎁
This year's gift guide is even simpler than in previous years, emphasizing books, experiences, and games. I have you in mind whenever I curate this collection — if you like this newsletter, there's a decent chance you'll like my gift guides. You may want to pass this link on to someone who needs a gift idea for you! And of course, I collected gifts that are delightful for you to give as well.
Shopping from my gift guide helps support my work — this newsletter, the podcast, my book-writing, and beyond — so thank you kindly in advance! I'm pretty meh about Black Friday, as you know, but if you want to start your shopping anyway, I appreciate you considering my collection. And as always, the focus is on smaller, simpler, and local.
Currently Reading, Watching, Listening 📚
The Word is Murder*, by Anthony Horowitz
* the beginning of a fun mystery series while waiting for next week’s new Inspector Gamache!
This week subscribers have been sharing ten specific things they’re grateful for, and they’ve been so good for us all to read! So many good ones, but I appreciate Krissy’s in particular here:
Babies and old people
Having time to contemplate the trancscendentals
A good cafe’ au lait
The songs of birds
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"For each new morning with its light, For rest and shelter of the night, For health and food, for love and friends, For everything Thy goodness sends."
— Ralph Waldo Emerson #
What is the best traditional Thanksgiving food? 🦃
I know so many of you like things like mac-n-cheese and mashed potatoes best, but those are often featured on the dinner table other times throughout the year — I wanted to ask you about the foods we typically only see around the holidays. And I agree with you, mostly! The stuffing is the best side dish, but pecan pie reigns superior to pumpkin, in my book.
Find this week’s poll here.
Quick Links 🔗
Become a paying subscriber of The Commonplace (and thank you!)
2 Days Until Advent! 🕯
Advent begins this Sunday, November 27! You still have time to order Shadow & Light because you don’t have to “do” Advent perfectly. I promise. Just start when you can.
And psst… For whatever reason, S&L seems to be the cheapest here!
Question(s) For You to Ponder… 🤔
What are three things you’d like to make sure happens before 2022 ends?
Have a good weekend,
p.s. Nerd shirt alert! I get compliments every time I wear it. 🤓 (And heads up: If you’re a lady, don’t get the ‘female fit’ — opt for the ‘male fit’ tri-blend tee, extra soft.)