Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Winter Break Week 1 {Getting Into the Holiday Spirit}

I am now back into the full swing of things back here at school with homework being assigned now. The times of having no work to worry about are long gone. That being said, if you haven't noticed I took a break from blogging during my winter break. It was nice to just relax without the obligation of having to do anything, something I have not had the chance of experiencing since before high school since winter break fell during the middle of the semester. I will be recapping each week of my break in upcoming posts to document all the fun I have had to look back on in the future.
I said goodbye to State College around 6:00 P.M. on Friday after my last final. I frantically packed my two suitcases after work leaving my dorm room looking like a tornado had just hit. I had a quick layover in Chicago where I ate a bagel sandwich I had brought from campus with the last of my meal points. I am not kidding when I say I had less than a dollar left when I went on my way. The last week or so I had to carefully ration out my food so I would not starve to death. I arrived in L.A. around eleven, but didn't get home until after midnight, being about three A.M. east coast time, after my dad had me wait outside for him for a while since he wouldn't leave to come get me until after I had gotten both of my suitcases from the baggage claim.
{Saturday} I was able just to relax and enjoy the comfort of home. I was planning on decorating our Christmas tree this day, but my dad didn't seem to notice since he didn't pick up the tree until that afternoon meaning he wouldn't bring it inside our house until the next day after he washed and let it dry outside in our backyard. He also nixed my desire to go and chop down our own tree to bring home and instead went to Home Depot. Boring! So, I basically spent the entire day wrapping presents and catching up on my loads of shows being a whole semester behind. My mom had not wrapped a single present, so I went to town picking out the right paper, bow, and gift tag for each gift. I enjoy wrapping up everything each and every year.
{Sunday} My mom and I had a mother daughter night with our neighbors enjoying dinner at The Lakes and The Nutcracker at the Civics Arts Plaza. I am slightly embarrassed to say I ate every single slice of my favorite Hawaiian barbecue pizza with whole wheat crust. I was able to enjoy the show with my hunger satisfied though. I really enjoyed the show. I had not remembered it since the last time I saw it was on a school field trip in the first grade. Man those guys can dance. I loved seeing all the colorful ballet outfits. It was a great way to get into the holiday spirit!
{Monday} In the morning I decorated a gingerbread house with my brother. Lucky for us it came pre-assembled! I'd say it may have turned out to be the best one we have ever made! Later that night I drove to The Grove with my friend for dinner. We ate at an Italian restaurant and then split a banana and a chocolate peppermint Sprinkles cupcake. We shopped around a little and admired all the holiday decorations, including the extremely tall tree. When I got home we finally decorated the tree just days before Christmas. I always seem to be the last one standing putting up all the ornaments.
{Tuesday} On this day we met my cousins, aunt, and grandmother for lunch at a Mexican restaurant before getting our massages or facials. We got our own private relation room to enjoy before and after our treatments. I wish those fifty five minutes hadn't gone by so fast. It was such a nice treat after a stressful semester.
{Wednesday} For Christmas Eve, we celebrated with my mom's family at my aunt's new apartment. It was great seeing all her new furniture. I was disappointed that she didn't have a tree. I mean how can you celebrate Christmas Eve without a tree to put the presents under? We ordered Japanese take out and baked dessert. I made red velvet brownies that turned out to be just god awful. They basically just tasted like dense bread. Yuck! Luckily my aunt had made red velvet cupcakes too.
{Thursday} Finally it was Christmas, my favorite day of the year! Santa dropped off a new iPhone for me and a desk for my brother. We opened a few more presents after that before having orange cinnamon rolls and getting ready for company. I prepared a few appetizers including a cranberry pecan candy cane cheeseball, pita trees, and grinch fruit kabobs. My mom also made cranberry crockpot meatballs and pigs in a blanket. The appetizers on Christmas are always muy importante to me because they act as my lunch. When the family arrived we opened gifts and enjoyed our turkey dinner with cranberry sauce, baked fruit, mac and cheese, vegetables, salad, dili bread, and stuffing. For dessert we had white chocolate cherry cookies, pumpkin pie, and red velvet cupcakes. I was sad to see the night end so soon.
{Friday} The day after Christmas we went down to see my mom's extended family at a buffet. This is the only time of year we ever really see them and there are tons of them since my grandfather has five sisters with their own families. We caught up and exchanged gifts before waving good bye until next year.
{Saturday} Penn State played in the Pinstripe Bowl at Yankee stadium agains Boston College. We packed the house! I was nervous because they had been forecasted to lose, but they proved them wrong and won in overtime!! It was so nerve-wracking to say the least. I was so happy for the seniors who had stayed with the program through the scandal and had not been bowl eligible during their entire college football careers until a few months earlier when the bans had been lifted. So glad the team was able to pull it off and end the season on a great note to move into an even better season next year! I can't wait! After the game, I also completed a 500 piece puzzle that I got for Christmas and watched That Awkward Moment with Zac Efron, which I enjoyed and found hilarious!
So, there you have it. My first week of winter break was a good one. I wish I would have had the week off before too to take part in more Christmas activities. Stay tuned for weeks two and three!
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