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Sunday, December 28, 2008

Deck the Halls


I have been in Chicago with the fam for about nine days now.  I love my family!  Absolutely love them to death.  I would do anything for them.  But, remind me next year to only go home for a week.  It's not that I don't love spending time with my family.  I do... I just need my space.  Living in the same city with them would be great.  I just can't live in the same house with them.  Every time I stay with them I feel like I revert back to childhood.  Or maybe they think of me as a child.  Anyways, eventually during the visit, they start treating me like a bitchy, whiny teenager and when they do that I become, well... a bitchy, whiny teenager.  That's why I'm so glad that Justin is coming Tuesday morning.  Maybe that will make me more grown up in their eyes.  Anyways, enough of this whining.  I have had a great Christmas.  Here are some of the highlights in no particular order.

1) Jersey Boys-- Now Jersey Boys is a highly entertaining musical.  It's the story of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons.  They guy who played Frankie Valli was amazing.  My dad thought he may even have a better voice than the real Frankie Valli.

2) The Food-- Now, my mom is the best cook!  I am not exaggerating.  I know that everyone thinks that their mom is the best cook, but my mom really is.  Just ask my cousins.  They'll vouch for her.  I've had a wondrous array of delectable Chinese food along with traditional holiday classics.  And the cookies.  THE COOKIES!  Nothing says Christmas like my great-grandmother's sugar cookies.  

3) Midnight Mass-- I always complain about going, but it always gives me chills.  Midnight at church just feels special and I always do feel a presence when I'm there.

4) Christmas Day-- It's always the same, but it's always wonderful.  We wake up to delicious chocolate pancakes with white chocolate chips, scrambled eggs, and bacon.  Then we open presents.  And I got everything I wanted and more, including a beautiful leather Cole Haan shopper.  

My vacation is just about half over, so there will be more highlights to follow this post.  In the meantime, let me just wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!


Thursday, December 18, 2008

As Promised!









Monday, December 15, 2008

Gausthaus Schnitzel and a Carriage Ride




Okay, I don't have the pics yet, but it had to be said, I am dating the sweetest, most wonderful guy in the universe! Justin took yesterday off so he could take me to Leavenworth. For those of you who don't know, Leavenworth is a Bavarian village in eastern Washington. It is very quaint, and touristy and very Christmasy!
Justin was amazing the whole day! We got going pretty quickly Sunday morning and we were off after a quick stop at Starbucks. I was a little nervous about driving through the pass, but Rosie, Justin's trusty truck, really pulled through. The pass was not a problem at all.
Before we got to Leavenworth, we made a quick side trip to Wenatchee. Justin loves Sonic Drive-Ins and the closest one (for now) happens to be in Wenatchee (3 hours away). In fact, I'm not quite sure Leavenworth was the real reason we made the drive ;)
Leavenworth was amazing! It was really cold, but we toughed it out as we walked along Front Street, stopping to look at little stores selling things like nutcrackers and angels. We bought some yummy taffy at a store that sold every flavor imaginable.
The highlight of the trip had to be our carriage ride. Justin took me on a horse-drawn carriage ride through Leavenworth. Now, what kind of guy suggests a romantic carriage drive on a freezing day? I am too lucky for words.
After the carriage ride, we walked around a little more and when our cheeks started to go numb we went inside for a pretzel and some hot spiced apple cider. That warmed us up enough to go back outside for the tree lighting ceremony. That really got me in the Christmas spirit! I barely even noticed the cold. It helped that we were standing next to a roaring fire. Everything was lit up bit by bit... first one tree, then another, and finally all the store fronts.
Our trip to Leavenworth ended with great food at a little restaurant on Front Street. I forget the name of it, but the food was excellent. I had gasthaus schnitzel, which is breaded pork with a mushroom and onion sauce with cheese. Mmmmmmmm...... yummy! It really was a day of eating!
After dinner we headed home and crashed for the night. It was a great day, and not to sound too sappy, but I have the best boyfriend ever! :) I'll put up pics as soon as I can!

Monday, December 8, 2008

I'm breaking my habit of one post or less per week and posting the day after my last post. Angela found a song for me to sing at her wedding. I know everyone in the world had heard of it except for me. It's called "Bless the Broken Road" and it's by Rascal Flatts. I downloaded it last night and I think it's beautiful. I think it will be perfect for Angela and Jason's wedding and I also think it expresses how I feel about Justin. So, here it is!

Bless The Broken Road lyrics

I set out on a narrow way many years ago
Hoping I would find true love along the broken road
But I got lost a time or two
Wiped my brow and kept pushing through
I couldn't see how every sign pointed straight to you
Every long lost dream led me to where you are
Others who broke my heart they were like northern stars
Pointing me on my way into your loving arms
This much I know is true
That God blessed the broken road
That led me straight to you

I think about the years I spent just passing through
I'd like to have the time I lost and give it back to you
But you just smile and take my hand
You've been there you understand
It's all part of a grander plan that is coming true

Every long lost dream led me to where you are
Others who broke my heart they were like northern stars
Pointing me on my way into your loving arms
This much I know is true
That God blessed the broken road
That led me straight to you

Now I'm just rolling home
Into my lover's arms
This much I know is true
That God blessed the broken road
That led me straight to you

That God blessed the broken road
That led me straight to you.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Questions




Lots of things on my mind today. I'll make a list.

1) How can you save a friendship that has always been important when all of your efforts are thwarted (that's right, I used the word "thwarted")?

2) Am I denying a vital part of who I am by thinking about becoming a member of a non-denominational Christian Church? I am Catholic, after all.

3) How can I get a really good workout in a very limited amount of time?

4) I feel like I've run out of really good adult books to read. Any suggestions?

5) What should I give Justin for Christmas?

6) How can I continue to be motivated in a job that has almost completely drained me in three-and-a-half months?

7) Is it weird that after reading the "Twilight" series and seeing the movie, I kind of want to be a vampire?

Food for thought.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Thanksgiving Adventures!

The past few days have been completely insane, so are therefore worthy of an update. Thanksgiving was great! I love a Green Bay Thanksgiving! The food was superb and the company was beyond compare. It was great to see my family. I hadn't seen my brother in nearly a year! The holiday went along without any hitches until Friday when my uncle hurt his knee playing touch football. Touch football is a bit of a tradition with my family. We usually play Thanksgiving day and sometimes the day after. I opted out this year (I wasn't wearing appropriate shoes and had forgotten my tennies). Anyways, my uncle hurt his knee in the game. It looked painful! I think he had the most crazy Thanksgiving by far.
We went back to Chicago on Friday. Saturday was fun! We got dim sum in Chinatown and then my mom, my sister and I shopped State Street. I have to say that I really do miss shopping in Chicago! Then we had yummy Chicago-style pizza for dinner and saw "Australia" (good movie, by the way).
Things started going downhill on Sunday. My flight to Cincinnatti was delayed, so I managed to get an earlier flight. Unfortunatley, that flight was delayed on the runway. I missed my connecting flight to Seattle and had to stay in Ohio (technically Kentucky) for the night. They airline paid for a nice room, but the whole thing was a huge pain.
I managed to get a flight back to Seattle today, but I ended up missing another day of work. The silver lining was that I would get a few hours with Justin before he had to go to work. Unfortunately that didn't happen. He took my out to lunch and locked his keys in his truck. I have to hand it to Justin. I would have called Triple A and waited for help. But Justin tried to solve the problem himself. He bought some rope at target and managed to loop it around the window opener to open it a little bit. Finally, someone came around with a tool and he was able to get the door open. This process took an hour, which left about a half-hour for us to spend together. :(
I spent the rest of the day relaxing--- a mani/pedi and major vegging time. It's back to the grind tomorrow. Phooey!