How is it that 2017 is nearly over? Doesn’t it feel like we were just talking about the start of a new year yet here we are 365 days later, doing the exact same thing? I don’t know about you, but sometimes my tummy hurts from thinking how time goes by quickly these days… In an attempt to stay on top of things during this holiday season, I’m drafting this post well in advance, and you may not hear from me again until next year (well, at least not here on the blog).
I’d be lying if I tell you that things died down since my birthday weekend commenced last month. In fact, they escalated real quick when Roan and I realized that we haven’t done much Christmas shopping for everyone else (other than for ourselves, oops!). Earlier this month, we were supposed to go to Balboa Park for the annual December Nights event, but got there a little too late that finding a decent parking spot was next to impossible. Definitely a lesson learned, but we hope to make it out there next year, and add it to our growing list of traditions!
In other news, Roan and I celebrated our 4th wedding anniversary this month! I posted this photo on Instagram, and I think it’s funny (almost borderline offensive—just kidding!) that some of you pointed out how fair my skin was on my wedding day! Some even insinuated that I went through skin lightening in preparation for the wedding! I mean, just look at my hands/wrists… I’ve already addressed this on Instagram, but that, my friend, is my natural skin tone!🤣
A quick backstory: Dad wasn’t around when Mom had me. They’d been waiting all day for me, and just as he left to take my grandfather home, I decided to come out! Remember, this was way before the convenience of having a mobile phone, so Dad had no idea that I’d been born until he returned to the hospital. When he asked the OB-GYN about my gender (they decided not to find out until I was born), she couldn’t remember at all; she just knew I was white as snow! I can only attribute becoming several shades darker to two things: (1) moving to San Diego two (almost three!) years ago; and (2) ageing.
Anyway, Roan and I had plans to celebrate our anniversary in an intimate dinner up in Escondido, but it also fell on the day the Lilac Fire broke out in San Diego County. We (our family and ourselves) live about 30 miles south from the fire, but it spread almost as quickly as it had started, so Roan and I did what sensible people would do. We started packing our valuables and monitored the fire progress closely in case a mandatory evacuation ensued in our area. Fortunately (for us), the fire spread through the west side of the county (in Oceanside), but it took 10 laborious days for the fire to be fully contained. We ditched our original reservation, and drove south to grab a bite at the San Diego Pier Café next to Seaport Village.
I talk about Ron and Jan’s first-born all the time here on the blog, and this little goof ball turned one this December! We pretty much saw him grow into this super adorable toddler over the year, and it’s just a proof of how fast time go by. We first saw him as a tiny creature in January when we visited them in their home, and we’ve seen them a lot more this year because of him! We were invited to his Seahawks-themed first birthday party in their home, and we learned a lot of new things about him! We can’t wait for him to start walking on his own and talk because he’ll be much more enjoyable to play with for sure!
It appears that Roan and I are going to complete nine nights of Simbang Gabi again this year! Unlike last year, however, potluck reception/gathering will only be held on the first and last day of the novena masses. We loved having some warm home-made macaroni soup or porridge (lugaw) every night after mass last year, so it’s a little sad that it’s different this year. Roan and I always look forward to completing the novena masses in preparation for Christmas every year more as a way to give thanks for the blessings we received this year than wishing for something (well, at least for me).
Anyway, we’re spending Christmas Day with Roan’s family (as we have since I moved here), and we’re doing Elfster this year. I may or may not have changed/updated my wish list several times because I couldn’t make up my mind on what to ask for Christmas! I’m used to shopping for myself (or for Roan), so it was quite a challenge to come up with a wish list for my Secret Santa. We’re doing things a little different this year because we’re spending Christmas at my in-laws’ (Roan’s parents and sister #1) new apartment that’s literally next door (OK, not really, but the building next to ours!).
That’s pretty much what we have planned for Christmas… I think Roan is contemplating on taking a day off a day after Christmas for an extended holiday weekend, but we’ll see. We return to work for a few days next week, then it’s the new year! We haven’t quite agreed on what to do for New Year’s Eve, but I don’t mind doing the same thing we did last year—stayed in, ordered pizza, and binge-watched on a lot of TV shows and movies!
Before I close this last post for 2017, I just want to thank everyone who’s kept up with me and my blog this year. I remain to blog for myself, but it makes my heart flutter with joy whenever I see familiar faces (names) on here every time I publish a new post (regardless if it’s a travel-related one or something else). Just know that little things like such makes me grateful. I wish y’all a lot of happiness, peace, and love this Christmas and in the coming new year!
Merry Christmas, everyone! I’ll see you, guys, in 2018! Cheers!🥂