Sunday, January 15, 2012

celebrations and settling in

now that I can post photos again, I'm ready for an update!

Aussie Santa uses the NT news for wrapping :O
as I mentioned in my last post, I crashed at my parents' house for a few days when I got back to the States. while I was there, we celebrated Christmas, my birthday, and my dad's birthday, in a pretty rapid-fire fashion. it was tons of fun. we celebrated Christmas right away - Aussie Santa even came with Aussie gifts for all :)

happy birthday to my favorite dad! ;)
for my birthday, my mom cooked at home instead of going out. I was a bit relieved, as I was still in settling-in mode. she made chicken with 40 cloves of garlic, prosciutto-wrapped asparagus, stuffed shells, and pavlova for dessert. it was, of course, incredible. I'm only sorry that I didn't have a better mind to take a photo before we all dug in. Jordan and his parents came over and we all feasted. shortly after, they had to leave to pick up Jordan's brother and his wifey from the airport, but I'm still glad that they came.

(mostly demolished) sashimi tuna
@ Bull's Head
then, I spent a couple days touring around the state with Jordan to have Christmas(es) with his family. we went to his aunt's house for dinner and back to his parents' house for new years. we spent a little time in the casino on the way through, which was fun, even though I didn't gamble. there were a couple notable times when I got really sad missing Darwin, and New Years was one of them. I remember excusing myself to go to the bathroom just to pull it together.

coneys @ One Stop
after the weekend, Jordan dropped me off back at my parents house and went back to Grand Rapids while the fam and I went out for my dad's birthday. my mom and I spent the whole day shopping, which was frankly miserable, and I think she can agree. we came home a while before dinner at least, which was a relief. we went to a restaurant in town that we had never been to, which was quite deserted, but quite good. we were all so stuffed that we saved birthday tiramisu until the following night, which was soooo good.

drinks @ Hopcat
since I've been back, I've been a bit indulgent in a few of my favorite GR spots. The Bull's Head, One Stop Coney Shop, Hopcat, Flanagan's, Founders, we went to a Griffins game, and to Peppinos... I also stopped by at work and filled out some tax forms so I can start making money again. I think working will help improve my mood. it will get me out of this apartment on days when I don't have class, for one. classes have begun as of the 9th, but I'm only taking 2, and teaching one day/week until March. my new student teaching placement seems wonderful, and I'm sure I will love working with my new (very tall) students. first time teaching high school!

my very snowy strreet
lunch @ Founders
I still get sad sometimes, but I'm working on coping. I know that it's okay to feel that way because it just means that the people I met and the experiences I had really made an impact on me, and they will be with me for life. for now, I'm here. I'm graduating in May, there's snow on the ground, and I have lots to look forward to and be happy about.

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