On Holidays and Such

Once a month isn’t toooo bad, right? I wish I had a good excuse… but I don’t because I do next to nothing really. Hopefully that will change soon though. Keep your fingers crossed for me!!!

 
I’m pretty sure I promised to go back in time and recount our trip to LA, but it’s been so long now I think I’ve passed the statute of limitations on it. But, quick run-down: it was Marcel’s parents’ first time in the U.S. of A., they got to meet the whole family (but just the immediate family so only 20 people), Marcel and I went to Vegas while the parents went to Catalina Island for some much needed R&R, we went to Santa Barbara and the took the most amazing route there and back (thanks to traffic and Marcel’s Chewbacca skills), we went to the Happiest Place on Earth, we played LOTS of games with my abuelitos, and we managed to communicate in a crazy blend of three languages. It was a lot of fun and entirely too short.

 
In December, Marcel and I are actually going back to LA to spend Christmas with my family. He’s never experienced a traditional Mexican Magdaleno Christmas, consisting of my gramma’s world famous tamales, burnt biscuits (it ain’t Christmas unless they’re burnt), and the chaos that is the opening of the presents. Oh! And how could I forget the annual Magdaleno family Christmas picture! Though Marcel isn’t allowed in the picture… yet. We have rules you know.

 
I’m so glad we’re able to make it out to California for Christmas. I’ve never spent Christmas away from my family and it is by far my favorite holiday, despite what my mother would tell you. It’s true I hate decorating, I hate putting up lights, I don’t care about Christmas trees, I refuse to put up stockings, and Santa Claus can suck it. But really folks! It IS my favorite.

 
Speaking of decorating, I have vowed that you will never be able to tell what time of year it is by looking at the inside, or outside, of my house. At my mom’s house you could literally pin it to the week. She decorates for spring, Easter, summer, Halloween (ugh don’t even get me started on Halloween), Thanksgiving, Christmas, and anything else she can find in between. It’s nauseating (love ya mama!) Mostly because guess who gets to climb a rickety ladder into the creepy (probably haunted) dusty dark attic to bring down a dozen 50 pound boxes filled with decorations… usually me. But not anymore!!! You’re welcome Paps!

 
So I said don’t get me started on Halloween. But I will say one thing. Thank goodness that they don’t celebrate Halloween in the Netherlands!!! Praise jeebus!!! Easily my least favorite holiday of all time. No trick or treating, or candy, or stores filled with slutty costumes for me!!! For once I don’t have to sit miserably at the door giving kids fistfuls of candy so I can finish it quicker and shut the door, turn off the lights, and yell at them to get off my lawn! Ah what joy!

 
October is one of my favorite months though because the weather starts turning, it starts getting colder, the leaves start changing colors, and I can finally dust off my coats and scarves and gloves. It’s also one of my least favorite months, because people start going psycho with Halloween crap, everything is pumpkin spice flavored, and my Facebook feed looks like it was directed by Tim Burton. Gross.

 
I need to start doing interesting things and going to interesting places because I have no pretty pictures to share with you guys. So here’s yet another view of the Oudegracht.

 

A view of the Oudegracht from the Stichtse Taveerne