I would like to take this post to say, Merry Christmas to everyone! I hope your holiday has been bright and special, full of family and friends, no matter where on this planet you are.
My Christmas has been successful and beautiful. Simple, maybe, but I rather enjoyed it. There was the Christmas concert at church which was lovely, the teen group Christmas party where we played some great games and met lots of new people (alongside classic American apple cider and brownies. Perfection), then there was the American Councils Christmas party where we ended up laughing at Youtube videos (aka Christmas Sweats).
|Just ignore the fact that you cannot see my eyes in this picture...|
The funny thing with Christmas this year was that we had to go to school on Christmas Eve. Not your typical holiday festivities. But once that class was over, I headed home to get ready for Christmas Eve! Back home, Christmas Eve was always classiness to the max, so I got all dressed up, got my cards and hostess gift together, grabbed a taxi and headed off to Anna's house.
Anna's house was lovely and every feeling you should have at Christmas Eve was present. The Christmas tree was in the corner, full of lights and ornaments, presents stacked underneath, the table set with Christmas napkins, and the smell of cooking food wafting from kitchen. Everything felt like Christmas Eve and I was finally getting that giddy Christmas feeling. When all the guests arrived, we talked, we played cards, we exchanged our Christmas traditions, we ate some absolutely delicious food (fish, if anyone was wondering. BUT IT WAS SO GOOD.) and exchanged our cards and gifts. Anna got me these absolutely lovely earrings and Savannah made a mixed tape of Christmas songs (which I love! I was seriously lacking in Christmas songs this season) and some cute trinkets from Arizona. After a few games of Egyptian Rat Screw, Hi Jack, and Cheat, we packed up and headed out to the church for midnight mass.
The mass was lovely, and although I couldn't understand much except for the occasional "Jesus" or "Bethlehem" or "Christmas", it was still very pretty with a nice choir up above. And at 1:30 in the morning, we took our taxis home and fell into a really-excited-night-before-Christmas sleep. AKA Not actually sleeping.
Early this morning, I woke up and Skyped my family back home where together we all opened our Christmas presents. Keeping Christmas tradition more or less, with a few tweaks. My mom played "It's the Most Wonderful Time" as she carried me down the stairs, just like it always used to be and then "sat me down" where I could see the entire living room. Then we began the rotation of everyone opening a gift at a time and it felt like I had never really left. It was just like every other Christmas I had ever known, and it was fantastic.
Then, the last present for me came along, the only wrapped present in my stocking (Thank you Mom for sending me my stocking!) and I unwrapped it eagerly. Inside? A gorgeous, new, purple camera. Fact of the day: my favorite color is purple. My mom then explained how she had e-mailed all of SHAKE, telling them to convince me to not buy a new camera until after Christmas, so I could use my stipend on it. It's absolutely perfect and I am enjoying it very, very much.
The rest of Christmas was pretty much watching Christmas movies, drinking peppermint hot chocolate, and padding around the house with my new fuzzy slippers. Lots of Merry Christmas greetings over Twitter and Facebook and two over Skype, but overall, Christmas was a success. From my little Christmas tree, to the Santa hanging on my wall, to my host parents greeting me with a really happy "Sretan Božić!" Even the small, entirely Bosnian conversation I had today was a complete success, so Bosnian Christmas was wonderful.
Anyway, I actually have school tomorrow, so I had better be off.
Until the next holiday, aka NEW YEARS,