Since many of you may be hoping for some fannish bits and bobs, I will lead with a new review I did for Mangakast. Last night, I was bored and so I did the thing I do sometimes when I'm looking for a new manga to read. I have the categories/tags page bookmarked on Baka-Updates (which is a great site that is kind of like a catalogue of all manga published and bits of information about them, though it's NOT a place to read manga.) and I will pick a subject I'm interested in, like "pen pals." I'll hunt down the list until I find one that looks interesting and has been scanlated.
Yesterday, I found Omamorishimasu, Dokomademo which briefly mentions pen pals, in a cute way, but is mostly a mob family drama with a little bit of m/m romance. If you can't tell, I was 'meh' about it. The mangaka, Junko (not my fannish persona, alas), is one that I enjoy, as she wrote Kiss Him, Not Me, a reverse harem that an otaku girl gains when she loses a ton of weight after her anime 'husbando' dies on the show and she goes into depressive mourning (which sounds TERRIBLE when I describe it that way, but it's actually done with a lot of love.)
The link takes you to my review, so feel free to read that and explore my other reviews, as you like.
Otherwise, Sunday was about decorating the Solstice tree.
Mason's D&D group ended up cancelling, but he wasn't much help since he fell asleep on the couch. Shawn spent the day fighting off a migraine, so I did most of the actual decorating. This year, I could NOT get the lights right. For some reason I ended up plugging a "male" plug into a dual plug and got to the end of the string only to discover that I had the wrong kind of plug. It should have just been a quick matter of finding the plug and flipping things around, but somehow, even though I was testing each string, I ended up with a bunch that weren't working. I must have done this rigmarole a half-dozen times. BUT, I finally got everything working and plugged in properly.
We bought our tree from the Y's Men, who set up across University Avenue from us.
We buy our tree there every year and do our traditional mad dash across University Avenue (which is a four-lane busy street with a set of light rail tracks running down the center of it, as well.) We decided this year that the light rail actually makes the running with the Christmas tree hoisted between Mason and I a little easier, because it acts like a safety island (there's a pedestrian pass or we'd NEVER be able to do this.) I'm sure we look ridiculous scurrying across all the traffic with a giant tree between us.
But it's part of our ritual, so you know.
Driving would be weirder, since University is now set up as a series of one way turns from our house, so it's actually several blocks LONGER to drive across the street, than it is to walk.
The picture of the tree is blurry because I have a new smartphone and am learning out to focus it. Many apologies. You get the general idea of the thing, at any rate. Big tree. Many lights and shinny bobs on it.
Since my family left me in charge, there are a lot more birds on our tree. Being pagan, I like to make sure there are a lot of bird ornaments and such on the tree. Sun symbols and spiders and deer also abound. I will talk more about what we do for Solstice as the time approaches, but, since both Shawn and I grew up with Christmas, we kind of celebrate both Solstice and Christmas. We exchange our meaningful, family gifts on Solstice and have a bonfire--though it's actually just a fire in our chiminea outside, and then exchange another small set of gifts on Christmas eve, mostly just to mark the day.
What about you? What are your holiday traditions?