One of my favorite things about this time of year are the stretches of time where hands are busy making something beautiful or whimsical and totally unique, and the mind is caught up in a story. We are lucky that Dan is an actor and a vocalist and is the best reader of stories a person could hope for (with one exception: I will forever hear the Uncle Remus stories in my grandfather's husky voice, which to me is just as they should sound).
There is an hour or so just before bed when we gather in a bedroom or, if I'm lucky, in the living room to listen to Dan read. Currently it's the sequel to Swallows and Amazons by Arthur Ransom, called Swallowdale. While he reads the girls draw or make cards, and I sew or felt lanterns (yes, still). It is absolutely my favorite part of the day.
We also love audio books; right now we are close to finishing the story of Gregor the Overlander by Suzanne Collins, and really enjoyed The Higher Power of Lucky, which got us all the way to Richmond and back over Thanksgiving (listening to it twice!).
Ani received a subscription for her birthday in May, to Sparkle Stories, and we look forward to the new story in the series By Thistle By Thimble every Friday. They are original stories expertly told (a subscription would make a great last-minute gift!).
My own crafting time, late in the evening, is made even sweeter with This American Life podcasts, or a recent recommendation from Kelly at We Are Here: a BBC production of History of the World Through 100 objects. It is an indulgent gift I don't think to give myself at other times of the year. Dan watches me making like a mad woman and shakes his head at the last-minute fury, but the stories make it all so much more satisfying...
Do you listen to anything while you work with your hands? Any good podcasts or stories to recommend?