First, a shameless plug: order today with standard shipping from my CafePress store, and get a free shipping upgrade so your items will arrive by December 24.
Doesn’t your beloved wife deserve some Dignaroos? Or won’t you step up and protect her honor on her semi-annual Trip Outside the Home by furnishing her with this presumably finely-crafted aluminum Pants Pass? Or some other ridiculous crap I threw together?
Then let’s retreat from crass materialism. I hope everybody knows Tasha Tudor, whose gentle illustrations are always full of sweet grace and warmth. They are what Thomas Kinkade and Precious Moments fail so wretchedly to capture: simplicity, innocence, and the small joys of the family. My favorite Tasha Tudor book is
Endlessly fascinating, this book takes you through a year of traditions and celebrations from the old days. It makes you feel happy and nostalgic for things you aren’t actually old enough to remember. I still feel, deep in the heart of me, that someday I will send a multi-layered birthday cake floating down the river for an evening party, or we will make our own tin can firecrackers to scare the corgis. Some books that hearken to a simpler time make you feel melancholy and guilty when you’re done, as you compare your life to what you’ve read; but this book doesn’t have that effect. I’m not even sure why. Maybe because, like Norman Rockwell, she injects enough realism — skinned knees, chapped lips, burnt fingers — to remind you that life was never perfect; and that children are still children, and always will be.