Wow!  Lots that I could write about tonight.

Found out that my brother-in-law would be a philosophy professor if he were to follow his passions.  That, plus a three hour drive to the farm made for some interesting conversation.  The question of existence and how do we trust it, anyone?  Realism vs. materialism.  Descartes.  Shortly thereafter began the DNA discussion, and a lecture he heard about the way that DNA coils, and how that affects what type of cell you'll have.  Super groovy.  And that led to discussion of artificial intelligence vs. consciousness.  Which then circled back to realism and existence, and the line between life and death. Wow.  I'm glad I've got almost an entire week here... I'm totally ready to explode some brains, mine included.

Two Christmas surprises.  First, my sister-in-law, Jodi, woke up at 6am to bake some cookies that I had indirectly requested on facebook, without really expecting anything.  For the record, they were the peanut butter ones with a hershey kiss in the middle.  I love those.  Especially if the chocolate is all melty from being pressed onto the hot cookies.  It wasn't, but I'll take what I can get.  (Melted chocolate is the bees knees.)

Second Christmas surprise: One year ago, my sister brought three little orphaned kittens to my parents because they were too little to be left at the farm without any care.  Joy and Dan were trying to find a home for them because they already had too many farm cats, and these sweet, little ones were not going to do too well there for long.  So my sister and her husband put an ad on craigslist.  And in the morning, they brought the two tabbies over to an elderly woman's house whose cat had just died.  (The woman's family had only been looking for one kitten, and my sneaky sister and brother-in-law brought both for them "to choose," hoping they would take both.  They did.)  That left poor little Tinkerbell all alone, for the first time without brothers and sisters.  My mom, who is on the finicky side, did not want the farm kittens in her house, for a few reasons (including possible parasitic worms and allergy suffering), but we'll leave it at that she's just finicky.  However, the basement, where the kittens had been staying, is super, super cold.  And I felt super, super bad.  Plus I love kittens.  And being a softy who loves kittens, I couldn't let little Tink stay down there all alone, without sibling warmth and cuddles, in a tiny, cold, concrete-floored confinement.  So I let her sleep with me.  (Much to mom's dismay.)  And she curled up in a soft, purring, little ball, and nestled down deep, next to my belly, where she was warm and protected.

Anyway, the Christmas surprise was, after all that story, a one year old, very sweet and affectionate leg rub from Tinkerbell upon arrival.  Cutest and friendliest little thing, she's still all cuddles and purrs.  I wish she could sleep with me here, but she's now a full fledged farm cat: not allowed inside.  My greatest disappointment in humanity is that people don't purr.  It really is so appropriate for many occasions. 

Ah yes, and I can't forget the stars.  New moon means many, many more stars.  Love.

Here we go, Day 132:

Oh, and starting today, I finally got smart enough to check the box that says, "Open link in a new window."  So, now you can listen and read at the same time.  Christmas smartedness!!