I have been on a much needed vacation that as long as it was, did not last long enough. Especially after hearing on the radio this morning that many European countries get anywhere from 4 to 5 weeks of paid vacation! It snowed more in Seattle than I think it ever has in decades. For me, that resulted in four paid snow days plus a weekend which equals a lot of fun! Ashley and I tromped around the Hill for six days, drinking hot chocolate, spending time with friends and cuddling up with good books and movies.
On Tuesday afternoon, my family and I left for Medford. Seeing the family was just fine, but being with Anastasia restored me. We had gone so long without seeing each other (9 months), that after a while, she just started to seem like a dream or distant memory. When I heard a small knock on my grandma's door, I flung it open, threw my arms around her and cried, “You’re real!” We held hands and took a walk at 1am in the pouring rain through the graveyard. We were cold and soaked and it was wonderful.
I am so in love with my friend. She is so beautiful and precious and sweet. She makes me laugh so hard and we can be the silliest girls and not care what anyone else thinks. The past five days have been full of long walks, good talks, dancing, cuddling and dumb jokes.Anastasia was meant for me. She is the friend that I never had and always needed. My soul feels full when I am with her. It is so unlike any other friendship I have ever had before.
I saw my other friends, Brette, Evan, Thom, Kate, Joel, David & Chelsea, too, but mostly spent my time at Anastasia and Nate's house. We didn't do anything, really, just sat around, laughed, talked, sang, danced and snuggled on the couch. It's funny how mine and Anastasia's friendship sounds like the perfect love affair, which I suppose it is, only in friendship form.
It was so hard to leave yesterday. I realized while driving home yesterday that I did not miss my life in Seattle for a second while I was gone. There were people and friends that I thought about and missed, but the rare connection I have with my friends there is unlike any other I've had throughout my entire life. Anastasia described being around one another as magical. She feels like something spcecial is happening whenever all of us are together. Sometimes I wonder why it took us so long to find each other, considering we were so near to one another ever since childhood.
So, now I am home and back to real life. Real life is definitely an accurate way of describing it, since for me being with Anastasia and my other dear friends feels nothing less than how she described it, as magical, special and very much like a dream.
I am at work (nannying) as I write this. This is Baby Kai, he is napping right now. He has changed so much since I last saw him two weeks ago! I missed him very much. He has become so much stronger and more aware of the world around him. He looks around instead of staring at me, kicks his legs, stands pretty easily when I hold him up and has started to feel more like a sturdy baby, rather than a soft little pudding boy. He is absolutely darling. I have completely fallen in love with him. I love little babies, but also cannot wait until he has grown, can go on walks with me and have conversations. We are going to have so much fun together.
Yesterday, Ashley in the snow. More here!
I was putting on my boots and was about to step outside when Kate called and told me to stay home. A second snow day! Now I am cozy and once again tucked away in bed.
Yesterday Ashley and I spent the day together. It was so nice, I haven't seen her in what seems like a month. It was our first chance to spend time together in a very long time. It tends to be that way fairly often, unfortunately.
We woke up to the snow and I danced around the apartment with much excitement. Ash made fun of me and told our mother over the phone that I was acting like an overstimulated puppy. We bundled up, went shopping for more appropriate snow attire, went home, re-bundled up and then walked to 15th for hot chocolate at Victrola. We tried to read our books for a while, but it was so loud and busy that I got too distracted and couldn't concentrate. So we went to the grocery, bought a few treats and went home.
We made homemade macaroni and cheese from scratch, (which we ate too much of and both had tummy aches later) watched "Horton Hears a Who" (we wanted "Home Alone" but the magical movie box was all out) and worked on Christmas decorations... The very same decorations that I started on over a month ago and never finished. That's pretty typical. Since I don't have anything to do until 5pm, I am going to devote myself to finishing those today. But first, I am going to take a nice snoozey.
I love snow days.
Last night, my whole family (on my Mom's side) got together and celebrated Christmas since we will be visiting my Dad's side of the family in Medford this year.
It was nothing like Christmases past. There was no kolachi, no sweet rolls or tea rings. There were no presents and no tree. Initially I felt very sad. How could Christmas be Christmas without a tree and pretty gifts piled beneath it? My daddy had us all sit around the fire, and explained that since we could not afford to give gifts this year, instead our gifts would be to pray for each other as a family. All of us have been facing hardships that are not easy to overcome. So we prayed for jobs to be found, homes to be kept, hearts to be healed, health to be held, peace to be present and for joy to always be abounding, even in our darkest moments. My sweet grandma held my hand tight, praying that my pain would melt away and my heart would be restored, after all of the hurt, confusion and despair I have been through this year. There was not one single cheek without tears streaming down them. Even my youngest cousins who are only 8 and 6 were so moved that they too cried. My family is so very special and we have always been close, but last night there was a closeness I had never felt with them before. Without the beautiful distractions of presents, lights and the tree, we were able to focus on the things that really matter.
I am so lucky.
Without a doubt, this was my very most favorite Christmas.
Cathy wrote a song about me and our magical December day two years ago. I cried while listening to it. I am not so sure I deserve something so sweet, but I must say that right now, I needed her kindness. You can listen to it here and the lyrics are below.
by Cathy Tang/Macmacmac
I've been dreaming of this lovely scene
we're singing by the Christmas tree
your smile, so warm and breathtaking
the stars are talking, can you hear?
ride on a merry-go-round with me
our laughters will jingle in a spin
your eyes, so blue and so starlit
this night's a cuddly baby blanket
la la la ......
come with me
sailing across the sea, I will be
blowing sunlights to all your misty dreams
December snow is not that freezing
as long as you're here with me
There will be sunshine in Seattle tomorrow. My beautiful friends are coming to town.
Sleepover number four (I think?).
They always find a way to lighten my heart and put a smile on my face.
How many times can a person have their spirit crushed and their heart broken?
I am so tired.
I am so tired.