Christmas Xmas

Ooh I’m back! Back from home in Bay Area….It was a nice relaxing break. It’s always nice to be at home, surrounded by family and relatives. Too bad the weather was cold and rainy up there. We couldn’t go anywhere.

We drove up with my sister, who came from San Diego to join us, on Thursday night. The traffic was ok. Not too many cars. We drove for 5 hours exactly on time.

Didn’t do anything on Friday. We stayed at home and finished the Japanese drama about the hospital politics among doctors. My parents watched it with us ’till 2 am in the morning (crazy!). We were going to hang out with my church groupies, but one of the guys got stuck in traffic from San Luis Obispo. We had to call it off because it was getting late.

Saturday was Christmas eve. My family invited my uncles, aunts and cousins over for our annual family gathering. Once again, lots of food were on the tables. The adults sat at the big dining table and us kids crammed into our small kitchen dining table. Haven’t seen some of the cousins for a whole year. Since some of them live in the East Coast, we hardly get to see them until this time of the year. We chatted and updated each other’s lives. Unfortunately one of the cousins, Virginia, is staying in London this year and couldn’t join us. We all miss you Virginia~~

After lunch, we watched “March of the Penguins”. It’s a documentary film about how the Emperor penguins in Antarctica marched hundreds of miles each year and suffer the harsh cold winters in South Pole just to give birth to their offspring and protect their families. It’s really  a cute and touching movie. I really love how the penguins move left and right while they were walking. They’re so adorable!

Later in the evening, my parents’ friends came over and we had dinner together. Afterwards, we went to the candle light service at our church. The candle light service is held on Christmas eve every year, where we all hold lighted candles, sing hymns and praise the Lord together. It’s a significant service that my parents asked us to attend each year.

Unfortunately not too many of our youth group went to the service. The youth group people are practically my only friends left in Bay Area. As times go by, all of us graduated and move out to other cities or other states. It’s really hard to get everyone together like we used to.

Next morning, Christmas day, my family got up early and went to church for Sunday worship. It’s rare to have Christmas day on a Sunday. The minister talked about this coincidence and explained how Christmas originated. When I was a kid, I only think of Christmas as a time to receive presents. Now as I grow older, I no longer look forward to the presents. Instead, I see Christmas more as an important holiday where family and friends can be together once again. I wonder if I have my own children in the future, how would they think of Christmas?

So we say goodbye to my parents yesterday and drove back to LA. No traffic again this time. We were very lucky! Now I have this whole week off. What should I do for the rest of my vacation? Stay home to relax? Or go to the malls to shop? hmm…..