It’s my birthday today, and it’s my blog day.

Talking about my birthday could be its own blog post, but I won’t do that. The only thing worth reporting so far is that my barista tried to get his co-workers to sing to me through the drive through window. He was summarily shot down by the other male barista on the scene, and I found his thwarted pout to be exceptionally charming.

As far as my writing goes, it’s stopped. It is a source of utter frustration to me as the holidays have run over my time frame like a Zamboni over an ice rink. I look back at the wilds of November and wonder how I could possibly have churned out fifty thousand words. Right now, a four hundred word blog post seems daunting. I’m too busy looking for deals and counting my beans.

On the other hand, I still love this time of year. I love the lights and the decorations and silly velvet hats. I love the manic glee and gilded tragedy of pouring over stuff and guessing what will make someone’s eyes light up. It’s like being told that you’re going on a date with everyone you know, but you have to bring them each something that says, “I know you and love you.” That is, unless you really just want to shag them and lose their number instead. Then it’s perfectly acceptable to give them chopsticks.

It’s a complex dance that brings joy and dread in equal measure. Two years ago my husband and I went out to Seattle and walked the town for the day. We walked into a Starbucks for directions and to treat our addictions and there were two gorgeous boys who had made themselves a matched set. The barista was thin, pale, and had white hair. Anime white, no less. I remember because I couldn’t help but wonder how he managed to out-elf Orlando Bloom. His counterpart in crime was dressed in all black, from the tips of his ebony coif to his very stylish Fluevogs. They were obviously in love, and I couldn’t help falling a little in love with them, too. They were so very true to themselves. We wouldn’t have seen them if we’d stayed inside, looting and cyber-pillaging Amazon’s trove. Inspiration is just as much a part of the process as perspiration, and these days are full of inspiration.

This is what I must remember during this season. While I may not be breaking any word count goals, I am absorbing life so I may reflect its light later, broken down like so many children’s building blocks and rearranged for the entertainment of others.

I am moving into the next phase of this strange career now. I am beginning to obsess. I am dissatisfied with the way I live because I’m not spending 8 hours a day writing. My new year’s resolutions this year are going to have less to do with BMI’s or IRA’s, and more to do with getting my next book published. I wasn’t entirely certain about it before, but now I am.

It’s been staring me in the face this whole time, but now I’m confident.

Time to get to work.