Gratitude post | december 2019

I am so ready and excited for 2020! I believe that I am in a good mind frame to tackle this New Year. Before I do so, I would like to have one last look at December, most particularly Christmas week. This last week has gifted me with such beautiful memories that I will fondly look back on for years to come. I wrote about my December activities on this post — My Christmas List 2019. The last week of December can be summarized in one word: FAMILY.

CHRISTMAS EVE

Mr Sweetie’s plate

I worked on Christmas Eve for half a day because I wanted to. I like being in San Francisco during the holidays. San Francisco is festive and nostalgic in December. We went to Mr Sweetie’s brother’s house at 3pm where we spent Christmas Eve. It was an intimate family gathering with a spread of delicious holiday food (prime rib, ham, etc) followed by a lively White Elephant exchange. Mr Sweetie and I got home at around 11:00 pm clutching our presents. (I got movie tickets and bucket of snacks which I gave to him while he gave me his White Elephant gift of Starbucks coffee beans and coffee travel mugs. I know that he chose those for me since he does not drink coffee.)

CHRISTMAS DAY

We slept in on Christmas morning until honestly, I do not even know. We could have slept in until almost 10 am. One of the things that I love when the frenzy is over is being able to enjoy the solitude and not having to watch the clock. Mr Sweetie stepped out for a couple of hours to visit a family member. When he returned I made his favorite brunch of cinnamon rolls and stuffed omelet. The rest was more resting and napping. We had the fire going pretty much all day. While he napped I got to read a cozy mystery. It was one more Christmas wish granted as I really wanted to read on Christmas as Icelandic people do on Christmas during Jolabokaflod. We did not open our presents until it was dark. For our Christmas dinner, I made lasagna and cheese bread which are indulgent dishes for us as we have not had lasagna in a while in our effort to eat less carbs.

DECEMBER 26, Thursday

Birthday Brunch

The day after Christmas was his birthday. I took him to a birthday brunch a Brenda’s which is a French Soul Food restaurant. (Steak dinner to follow at a later date.) I also took the day off to spend time with him. Another day of rest which was how he wanted to spend his birthday. He rented Rambo Last Blood when we got home. Oh, well, it was his birthday and he gets to choose what he wanted to watch! Ha! Ha!

December 27, Friday

Fun Evening With The Nephews

I returned to work on December 27, Friday, knowing that I will get more days off for the New Year. My sister called me to ask if they could drop off my nephews for a couple of hours so they could go on date night. I was beyond ecstatic! I hardly get to spend time with my nephews outside of seeing them on Sundays at church and lunch afterwards. My 3 year old nephew, Jacob, provided us with hours of entertainment playing with him. We ended up giving him one of his presents (which is a remote control dump truck) which he loved. He is just a very happy, super-active child. I looked at my 16 year old nephew, Gabriel, with fondness since I used to babysit him when he was his brother’s age. I told him that he will always be my baby. He is the opposite of his 3 year old brother. Gabriel is always a quiet, very laid back child who is now a young man! When I got my sister’s call, I went to Trader Joe’s and bought all kinds of snacks. I got fettucine alfredo for Gabriel which is his all time favorite. I also got mozzarella sticks, tater tots and fries. Mr Sweetie and the boys were well-fed while doing their male-bonding thing talking about race cars and movies. Even baby Jacob chimed in by saying that he will buy a Lamborghini, and told us that he went to the zoo to pet an elephant. (My sister later on told me that he has not been to the zoo yet. Ha! Ha!)

December 28, Saturday

Family Holiday Get Together

Every year I host the family holiday get together with my siblings. It is surprising that we actually got to see each other in December. Usually, we do not get to do our gathering until almost end of January. (I guess we all wanted our presents!) We went to Taste Bay Buffet which was my siblings’ choice. My family can eat so everyone was happy. I will post a full review later but I actually liked it, surprisingly. I am not a fan of buffets but I limited myself to a couple of dishes (braised beef noodle soup and dim sum) which were surprisingly delicious. I even allowed myself a freshly made crepe and vanilla ice cream.

We exchanged presents in the parking lot after our meal. This day was so full of love all around and a day that I will always fondly remember.

New Year’s Eve

New Year’s Eve Brunch at Sunshine Cafe in Pittsburg, CA

I took the day off to accompany Mr Sweetie to his doctor’s appointment. Everything went well and he is given a clean bill of health. We ended up doing errands — visited our house in the suburbs, got the car smog-checked which passed without any problems, bought a pie and had a delicious brunch.

We spent New Year’s Eve at home where we had an appetizer spread for our NYE dinner. We did not even wait for the New Year. We slept in although I woke up to the sounds of the fireworks. He really enjoyed the appetizer spread that it is going to be a new NYE tradition.

It has been a lovely last week of December where everything was just perfect. I have so much to be grateful for on my most favorite month of the year — hope and salvation though the birth of my Lord and Savior, festivities, feasts, celebrations, togetherness, presents, warmth amidst the cold, solitude, friends and loved ones. Most of all, I received the most beautiful gift of all which is being able to spend time with my family.

Thank you, December! Thank you, 2019! Hello, 2020!

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