Having decorated the house for Thanksgiving and thrown my belated Halloween/Thansgiving-for-reading-week-being-over party, I turned my thoughts to Christmas. I may not have done the reading yet for the class that starts in fifteen minutes, but I have got this holiday thing down. Or, to be more specific. I have a very strong desire for my lovingly hand-made gifts to actually arrive in time for Christmas. And since everyone knows the post is terribly backed up at Christmas—and I suspect the postal route between Great Britain and Canada hasn’t changed since American independence—that translates to sending the gifts around the first of December. This has the added benefit of getting them safely off before revision and finals eat my life.

Incidentally, the presents are going to be great. I want to tell you all about them in loving detail. But as I think the venn diagram circles of ‘my readers’ and ‘people I’ll be giving presents to this year’ overlap substantially, that would spoil the surprise. Suffice it to say that I am breaking ground in unfamiliar media, with interesting results. It’s a learning experience. Paint is as messy as I remembered, despite my efforts to keep it contained. My manicure has been suspended for the duration.

Did I mention that I have prettily manicured hands these days? I find the polish cheerful. It’s more resilient than I expected, too. At least until I assailed it with paint and pliers.