Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Happy Holidays!

For those of you that know me, I'm not one to be politically correct. In fact, I pretty much hate all that political correctness crap. With that said, I say happy holidays, not in fear of offending someone with a Merry Christmas, no, but because this post covers both Christmas and New Year (therefore, multiple holidays). :)

I made it home, finally finishing my semester at Columbia, and was greeted by a very welcoming and loving Patrick who took two weeks off! YAY!

So, after being home for a few days, we took off eastward headed to Wisconsin for Christmas with his family. Sam came with us and did amazingly well on the long car ride. It was about 17 hours, and he was a trooper. Much of the time Patrick was driving Sam spent curled up on my lap dozing or purring. However, when I drove, he curled up on the back window. Haha! :D

We made it to WI, and Patrick's younger brother Ben arrived the next day from Rochester, MN. He had left his cat, entropy, at home. We hung out with Ben and were greeted the next day (Christmas Eve) by Patrick's youngest brother, Jeff, and his fiancee, Molly. They brought two cats with them, a young playful one that quickly became a great friend to Sam and an older, more skiddish one that never really warmed up to him or me. There was some drama at the meeting but overall everyone did well.

Christmas was fantastic! It was so great to see everyone open and enjoy their gifts. I love it! Patrick made me an amazingly sweet book full of pictures of my dad, as I didn't really have any but his baby picture. It was very sweet. Overall, the day was fantastic.

The trip ended well, and I saw a bit more of where Patrick grew up, which was very neat.

We split the drive home up over two days, which made it much more tolerable. The hotel in Des Moines was nice. Once we finally got home, we enjoyed a nice snowstorm. We got about 6-8 inches...woo hoo! Sadly, I missed the storm that hammered NYC with more than a foot! :( O well. At least we got some here, and a lot of it is left, surprisingly, because it's been pretty cold.
New Year's Eve, Patrick's friends threw a masquerade party, which was a lot of fun. Surprisingly, everyone showed up in formal dress and a mask! Yay! It was a fun evening, and the next day we enjoyed watching the Rose Bowl game. Patrick was, of course, rooting for Wisconsin. I (surprisingly) rooted for TCU. It was such a fun game to watch, well played by both teams.

And now, we're just enjoying the rest of my break. It'll be hard to go back, but we know it's only a short time more and then I'll be done for good. :)

Friday, December 17, 2010

Christmas Cheer

Christmastime is here...Happiness and cheer...

Ok, for all you cartoon inept, that was Charlie Brown Christmas "Christmastime is Here" - - Google it. :)

Anyway, I've been gettinga lot of requests for more pictures of NYC, since I'm only here a year, and especially now since it's Christmas. The city is totally bedecked and bedazzeled and looks amazing. Everywhere you turn there are lights and cheerful displays. So, I thought I'd share some with you.

This is Columbia's main campus, from the entrance at Amsterdam & 116 looking down the row:

This is the old, original library for Columbia that is now just admin:

Here are the trees around Columbus Circle, wrapped in a bluish white:

And the Columbus statue:

In the mall right there, they're having a Dali exhibit of sculptures inspired by his art:

This is hanging inside the mall:

This is the Cartier store on 5th Ave:

The tree at Rockefeller Center:

Radio City Music Hall, where the Rockettes perform:

And some window displays. This is the Anthropologie window:

And some from Saks 5th Avenue (the real one, on 5th!):

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Finals...O How I Loathe Thee

Well, it's finals week. That means a couple things: a) I haven't seen daylight in a few days, as I've locked myself in my room to work on projects and papers, b) everyone is stressed to the MAX and half are sick c) my diet consists of anything I can get delivered or anything free and d) my brain feels like pudding.

But, it also means that in a week I'll be heading home for semester break to spend the glorious month off at home. AND I'll be 2/3 of the way done with my Masters! I can't believe it. It's going to be a tough finish, lots of work and dedication, but I know I'll do it. This week is hell, but it's only a week, and I can do it.

Everyone's been so encouraging and positive for me, thank you! I can't wait to be done and home to finally enjoy Christmas!


Friday, December 3, 2010

Just Another Day at the Office

As many of you know, I have two jobs on campus (on top of 15 grad hours...I know, I'm crazy). So for one job, the Reading and Writing Project (Lucy Calkins), we're throwing a Holiday Party to thank the other departments on campus for all they do to help us out. My job today was to go shopping for the decorations. Fun!

I went with a coworker, armed with petty cash. O boy. Everyone knows how I dispise shopping, but Christmas decorations and someone else's money equals FUN! :D So, we set out. We ventured into Harlem to the .99 store, but they didn't really have much. I was kind of surprised, actually. Anyway, we decided to head down to a discount store further up called "El Mundo." This was a pretty cool store. It's like a Savers or something like that.

We shopped around in their Christmas display, and loaded up the cart with our decoration goodies. As we headed to the checkout, Natalie realized she didn't have the cash anymore. O no! What!? So we looked around, hoping to see it on the ground nearby. No luck. We surmised that it must have dropped out or she had gotten pickpocketed. Sucky!

So, we headed back to work, calling on the way to explain what had happened. Sucky!

Well, on the bright side, we made someone's day. Someone is $100 richer now. Poopy. O well.

So, now they're sending me back out to go try again. :) Round two!

Just another tasty treat from the gang at Empire Records!