Anne B. Walsh - Do you believe in magic?
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Anne's Randomness

Before and after

Good morning, O readers! Ordinarily, today would be Why Do I Work Here Wednesday, in which I would give you pictorial evidence that my coworkers at my day job here at Glass Bathroom Bank (not its real name) are secretly five-year-olds in cleverly designed adult costumes. But this morning, I am in a better mood than that.
 
Why? Oh, I don't know. Could be the wonderful vocal stylings of Straight No Chaser at their concert last night. Could be my new, just-released Christmas collection. That's right, Tomorrow Shall Be My Dancing Day is now live on Smashwords, Amazon, and CreateSpace, as well as for pre-orders of signed copies on Etsy! Etsy orders should start shipping around Wednesday, 12/17, which means if you order right now you might even have your signed copy in time for Christmas!
 
To add to the holiday spirit, I do have some pictures for you, but this time I hope they make you smile for a different reason than disbelief in the childishness of my coworkers. These were taken at my church (which I call, with love, Our Lady of the Mispronunciation) during our annual Giving Tree project.
 
If anyone is unfamiliar with this idea, a small Christmas tree appears in the front of the church shortly before Christmas, covered with white gift tags. Each tag has a requested present for someone in our area who is not going to have much of a Christmas because of personal hardship in their lives. We, the parishioners, are asked to take a tag or two, purchase the suggested gift or another one similar to it, and return it, wrapped, by a certain date.
 
Here is our Giving Tree shortly after it was set up. Not the greatest photo in the world, but as you can see, people are already snagging tags left and right:
 
The Giving Tree with tags
 
Bear in mind, this "before" shot was only taken about two to two and a half weeks ago. Now, here's the "after", what the Giving Tree looked like this past Sunday night, before our Lessons and Carols service:
 
The Giving Tree with presents
 
The ocean of presents continues up the side aisle to the left, and was also starting to curl around the altar on the right. As happens every year, every tag was taken, and almost all of those were returned, present in tow. Somewhere there is a little girl, three years old, who will be getting Disney princess art supplies for Christmas, and a young woman who will finally have the kitchen equipment to cook her own meals.
 
As the veggies of VeggieTales told us, O readers, Christmas isn't about getting. It's about giving. And it's especially about a little baby named Jesus, who was the greatest gift of all. Thanks as always for reading, and see you all on Fiction Friday, when my next gift to you is due!

3 Comments to Before and after:

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NotACat on Wednesday, December 10, 2014 11:13 AM
…and Etsy'd ^_^
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Heather on Thursday, December 11, 2014 6:38 AM
Awesome, and awesome! I can't wait to read the stories, and I know there will be dozens, if not hundreds, of excited people opening presents Christmas morning which they wouldn't have gotten without the generosity of your church. Thank you so much! (Also, the title of your book prompted me to look through my music for recordings of "Tomorrow Shall Be My Dancing Day" and I found an incredibly lovely rendition by the BBC Welsh Chorus on a CD called Celebration: Christmas Fanfares & Carols. I've been heartily enjoying listening to it for the past few days as I've been looking forward to the book itself!)
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greatlakesmolly on Saturday, December 13, 2014 8:50 PM
To steal from a favorite movie, lets hear it for Our Lady of the Misp -- the richest church in town. May your preparations give you grace and consolation as you navigate Yule and get ready for the real Christmas.
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