Full Social Calendar

My final exams were last week. The exam that I thought would be difficult was easy, and the exams that I thought would be easy were difficult. Overall, I didn’t do as well on my exams as I expected, but I was relieved to find out I ended up with straight A’s anyway! Yay! I’m off to a great start in graduate school!

I flew home for the holidays last weekend. Yay for holidays! I love Christmas. After spending the first couple days with my parents, I started making plans with my friends. Within a day, I had the rest of my week planned with social activities.

I had all-you-can-eat sushi with my big sister from (my old) work and her husband two days ago. Yesterday, I had high tea and spent the afternoon at the mall with my old high school friend (the one I lost touch with for ten years), then I had dinner with my best friend from high school (the one getting married in a few weeks and for whom I’m the best man). Tomorrow, I’m having lunch with my other best friend from high school. On Saturday, I’m having brunch with my group of college friends and then going Christmas shopping with my college bestie. I already have a couple vague plans for next week too!

Over the last three months, my only regular non-academic social interaction was having dinner with my two new friends from graduate school about once a week. It’s strange having such a full social calendar, but it’s great!


Week After Holiday

The week after a holiday is always difficult. My long weekends are never restful, and I inevitably sleep less than usual weekends. As a result, I haven’t been sleeping very well the last few days. I started feeling a scratch in my throat yesterday, and it’s a bit more sore today. I’m sure it will be worse before it gets better.

My last midterm of the term is tomorrow afternoon, but I can’t seem to concentrate while I study for it. I keep making small arithmetic mistakes. I usually don’t like to study the day of an exam (I like to have a clear mind), but I might have to make an exception so I can rest tonight. I won’t be getting much studying done tonight anyway.

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Ordinary Miracle

Monday is Presidents Day (is it “President’s”, “Presidents'”, or “Presidents”? I can’t tell), so I get a rare three day weekend. This weekend is interesting for other reasons too. Besides President(‘s,s’,s) Day on Monday, the Vancouver Olympics started yesterday and both Chinese New Year and Valentine’s Day are tomorrow! Celebrations all around!

I watched the opening ceremony to the Olympics last night. I love the Olympics (and Canada!). I might be naive, but I like the idea of the world coming together for a global event. The athletes may be competing against other countries, but at the end of the day, they are all taking part in an international symbol of unity. The whole idea seems to coincide with my recent optimistic perspective.

Meanwhile, my sister is coming over tomorrow to celebrate Chinese New Year with my parents and me! She got a new chihuahua puppy less than a month ago who I have yet to meet, and my sister said she would bring her puppy with her! So cute!

The opening ceremony included Sarah McLachlan singing a song called “Ordinary Miracle.” I did some research, and the song was actually from 2006 for the live-action movie remake of Charlotte’s Web. Sarah McLachlan is amazing, and I think the song has some great lyrics, so I’m posting the music video for it (even though it’s about the movie and not the Olympics). Hopefully the footage from the Olympics will be available someday, in which case I will update this. Enjoy!

Brief Recap

Wow, it’s been a month since I last posted anything. That’s the longest hiatus I’ve had since I started this blog. I didn’t want to wait this long, but life has a way of becoming busy. A brief recap:

My Thanksgiving weekend was great! I went to my uncle’s house for a traditional Thanksgiving dinner. Growing up, I used to go to my uncle’s house for Thanksgiving every year, but I hadn’t been in nine years because I lived away from home for college and graduate school. The turkey was juicier than I remembered (I always thought turkey was dry), but the stuffing and biscuits were just as amazing as ever. I love stuffing. Besides the food, I also love the idea of Thanksgiving. It’s nice to have a day to reflect on what we often take for granted. We all need a little perspective sometimes.

A few days after Thanksgiving, my sister got married! She was the most beautiful bride ever (though I might be biased). I didn’t cry during the ceremony, but my eyes got a little watery during my sister and her husband’s first dance. It was just too cute. The whole wedding and reception were simply amazing (and I got to take a lot of cake home).

The weeks after Thanksgiving were beyond busy. I had a take home final exam for one of my classes, and I literally spent an entire weekend working on it, only stopping to eat and sleep. My finals were stressful, and every day was more tiring than the previous one, but I prevailed! I ended up getting over 100% in one of my classes (over the entire quarter) and almost 100% in another. All in all, I had an amazing return to school, and I hope it continues next year too.

After classes ended, I immediately had to work on my applications for graduate school. I hate writing essays, and some schools require two of them! I finished almost everything for the applications, but there are still things to be done. I have to set aside some time next week to work on those.

My brother came back from medical school for the holidays about a week ago. Usually when he comes back, I don’t have time to do anything on my own. Most of my week has been spent cleaning the house in preparation for Christmas and watching TV shows on Blu-ray with my brother. He got my addicted to Heroes last year, and now it’s Lost. I’m not complaining about spending time with my brother. I love my brother, but I barely have a spare moment to myself (I only have time now because I woke up a little earlier than him).

And here we are: Christmas Eve. The season (and the year in general) moves very quickly. My family has our huge dinner and family gathering tonight, so I still have lots of cleaning and preparing to do.

Merry Christmas everyone!

Sign Of A Good Weekend

I’m really looking forward to the long weekend. The shortened workweek (did you know that workweek is one word?) is reason enough to celebrate, but I actually have plans too!

I’m going shopping at the Cabazon Outlets with one of my best friends from high school and his girlfriend tomorrow. I’ve never been to those outlets, and I don’t really know where Cabazon is, but who am I to turn down a day of shopping?

On Saturday (July 4th), I’m hanging out with my best friend from elementary school again (we have a lot of lost time to catch up on). We’re going to attend a barbecue at his mom’s place in Marina del Rey (it just sounds pretty). My friend said there will be a deck that overlooks the ocean and has a perfect view of the fireworks (I don’t know who’s putting on a fireworks show, not that it matters).

I’ll probably end up crashing at my friend’s mom’s place on Saturday (my friend suggested that I should). I’m not sure what my friend has planned for Sunday, but I’m hoping it’s something low-key. My weekends aren’t usually this packed. As much fun as the weekend is going to be, just thinking about it makes me feel tired. I’ll probably be more tired on Monday morning than I would be from a normal weekend, but maybe that’s a sign of a good weekend!

Happy Canada Day

It’s already the end of the day, but I wanted to wish all the Canadians out there a Happy Canada Day! It was just another day here, but having lived in Canada for a few years, I like to reflect on Canadian holidays. All day, I thought about my friends in Canada and what they were doing for the holiday. I miss them.

In the back of my mind, I keep thinking about planning a trip up to visit, but it just doesn’t seem plausible at the moment. It’s hard to get away from work, and the meager salary I get doesn’t make a vacation very practical.

We’ll see if I can scrounge up the money somehow. I could try to make time to visit during an American holiday. Thanksgiving comes to mind, especially since I spent the last four (American) Thanksgivings in Canada. I do like keeping tradition.

This Friday is Independence Day (the Fourth of July) here in “the States.” I wish I could take both American and Canadian holidays off!

Flowers And Dresses

Happy Mother’s Day to all the mothers out there!

I bought my mom a dozen red roses. She was really surprised to get them. I don’t think she was expecting me to get her anything, and she said that she’s never received flowers besides when my siblings and I were born. She was so happy that she insisted on taking pictures.

My sister and her boyfriend visited us for a Mother’s Day lunch. My sister actually also bought my mom flowers, a small arrangement inside a cute mug-like vase that says “A mother’s love is never ending.” My mom was pretty stunned and happy that she received so many flowers on one day. My dad is definitely not the romantic type, so getting gifts always seems extra special to my mom.

We had lunch at a nearby Japanese BBQ restaurant. In addition to all-you-can-eat Japanese BBQ, there was a sushi and salad bar. The BBQ was really tasty, but the sushi bar was lacking (especially compared to some places I went to in Canada). They did have unagi (freshwater eel) rolls, though, which is a plus.

I tend to eat too much at all-you-can-eat BBQ restaurants, especially now that I can’t eat as much as I used to. I was full for most of the day (my whole family was). We walked around the mall a little bit, and even visited my Target for a short while.

After we returned home, my sister, her boyfriend, and I watched 27 Dresses on DVD. My mom declined to watch with us, though she came back in to watch the last 20 minutes or so, asking a lot of questions. I ended up being the only one to watch the whole movie, since both my sister and her boyfriend fell asleep on the couch! I really liked 27 Dresses. I’m a sucker for chick flicks, and Edward Burns and James Marsden are both very good looking.

My mom placed her flowers on a shelf next to our HDTV so that she could see them while she watches TV. She keeps telling me how beautiful her flowers are as I’m writing this post. I think she had a good Mother’s Day!