It’s almost unbelievable how fast this Christmas break has gone by. It’s been a blur of activity: just as soon as I closed up shop on campus on December 19, it was time for Christmas preparations, of which I had done nothing up till then.
After JG’s and the Hubby’s gifts were gotten and delivered, the Hubby left town to see his mom and youngest brother in Kentucky, of whom he hadn’t seen in eight years. It was a time for catching up for him, and he was surprised — some good, some bad — how some things had changed (like his stepfamily) and some things hadn’t at all (like his oldest brother). The Hubby tells me that it was ungodly freezing there, and the trip to and fro was cold and rainy. But it was good to reconnect.
As for Daniel and me, we headed to my parents’ house to join my family in the evening Christmas vigil Mass at the local Catholic church. Usually, we would stay up till midnight and then open our gifts with wild abandon. But as my mom decreed that the gifts were only for the grandkids — Daniel and his five-year old cousin Vincent — and my brother (V’s father) wanted the gifts to be opened at his house (after Christmas dinner), we went to bed at a reasonable time and then spent Christmas afternoon and evening at my brother’s and his girlfriend’s house.
Here’s a pic of my parents and the grandkids, shortly after we got back from Mass (hence the sleepy looking grandkids):
My nephew Vincent actually prefers to stay over at my parents’ house because he’s a Nintendo Wii fanatic, and the console’s only at my parents’ house. My mom got him Rock Band for Christmas, which is probably too advanced for him, but my family tried it out. I chickened out, served as “band photographer”, and laughed until I couldn’t breathe.
My youngest sister Shell on vocals; Vincent, my mom, and Daniel on drums; my dad on lead guitar.
Testing out the drums:
Christmas dinner and gift-opening photos pending, as my brother’s burning them on a CD for me (and I absent-mindedly left my digicam at my parents’ house that evening).
I saw some friends I hadn’t seen in quite awhile in a Boxing Day/ 2nd Day of Christmas party while the Hubby was still out, and we both welcomed Zathras and his daughter — now cruising! — before New Year’s Eve. The Hubby, Daniel, and I spent New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day at my folks place: New Year’s Eve at a party hosted by very old family friends (I’d known them since I was in middle school) and then a disastrous mixture of cooking siopao and drinking (for the Hubby and my dad) back at my folks’ place while waiting for midnight and beyond; and New Year’s Day, recovering from New Year’s Eve. 🙂
The Big News over New Year’s was my younger sister Wen’s pregnancy. After two miscarriages, type I diabetes that still needs to be better controlled, and her age of 35, Wen was extremely cautious not to break the news until she was two months along. Of course, she was also extremely cautious not to introduce her new boyfriend to my family until she absolutely knew that he was a keeper — which was on Christmas, when he, a long-time lapsed Catholic, joined us for the Mass for Wen’s sake. (Even Wen’s ex-hubby never did that when they were married, all of those ten years!)
“Pray pray pray for a healthy baby,” she asked me. So I did, I do, and will do.
Now, the Hubby’s on a three-day new faculty retreat, of which he’s one of the coordinators (so he can’t get out of it, even though this week is still technically on break), and I’m finishing up all of the Christmas break errands and chores that have been on the backburner since the summer break. I know once this week is over — my last week of the break — these errands and chores (like decluttering the garage and getting my annual check-up) will get shoved back to that backburner, as I have buttloads of preparation to do for Spring 2009 classes. SMART classrooms! Online classes! New office! Oh my!
Well, my readers, I hope your Christmas and New Year’s Day was lovely, and may you have a blessed Epiphany (aka Three Kings’ Day) tomorrow.
Pax vobiscum. 🙂