It’s been an interesting vacation/holiday/break so far. When I say interesting, I don’t necessarily mean exciting, but it has been a different type of break for me. Not bad, not great, but definitely relaxing and thought provoking. In the last 3 months of my life I have done more sitting around, doing nothing and waiting than I can ever remember doing since I was in elementary school on Christmas vacation. Even then, I remember dreading the break because I knew I would get bored and just want to go back to school. I have changed at little in that respect, but not much. I prefer to have plans and keep busy, so all this down time has taken some getting used to. A typical day goes as follows: Wake up around 11 or 11:30. I’m usually the first one up, so I putter around, making whatever you can call your first meal of the day occurring around noon. Then I might watch a movie or tv show I downloaded on my computer. Around 2 I might see my roommates and we might talk about what our goals are for the day, but not in that terminology, of course. We might leave by 3 to get something done, but by then it’s almost dark anyway. Come home later, make some food, watch another movie, read, knit, make some interesting food (today: bagels!) watch more tv, call home (now its about 12 midnight or later, and the US is in the middle of their day). Somehow waste more time online (if it’s up and working) read and go to sleep around 3am. Repeat.

For Christmas our apartment had a lovely dinner planned. We cooked for a lot of the day and watched A Christmas Story and Home Alone together. We made two chickens with a honey lemon glaze (DELICIOUS!), I made the stuffing again (even better now that mom sent me spices!) and we had carrots and potatoes and zucchini roasted around the birds. Cassie made sugar cookies and deviled eggs too. I was supposed to be on apple crisp duty, but we were just much too full for that. I’ll save it for another day. It wasn’t easy not having any presents to open, but, somehow it was much easier than that one year when I convinced mom that she should let me open my presents on Christmas Eve. I spent most of that Christmas day in tears. After dinner, I watched ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ on my computer. That was a mistake. I had seen the movie before, but I guess I didn’t really think much about the plot or moral. This time I really took the ending to heart and got emotional. Then I decided it was a good time to call Karlie at her house in Tomah. Now, I am emotional and about to talk to my best friend, who’s voice I hadn’t heard in probably 2 months, and whom I haven’t seen since June. That wasn’t the most clearheaded conversation that I have ever had, but I am so glad that I got to talk to her. Dad called and talked for a bit too, and so did Kelsey! She’s the first person I have talked to from the US on my cell. She uses a prepaid program online where you get a pin number and use your own phone – I guess it’s only like 6 cents a minute. Should I get more information on that?

No plans for tomorrow…Still haven’t gotten our ISIC cards, so it will be a lazy weekend, most likely. Which is probably good, since new years is coming now, and I have no idea if people sleep during that holiday. It sure doesn’t sound like it, but you will be the first to know, either way.

I hope everyone had a very Merry Christmas and is enjoying the snowy, cold, classic winter back home! Lots of Love and Hugs, Jen

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