Merry Christmas to all of our beloved friends and family around the world! This year we will be celebrating Christmas Eve at Poppa (Katie’s grandpa)’s nursing home and spending Christmas day here at my house with family and friends.
I (Katie) flew to New York at the end of November to pick up Joost and my car. We made a quick run through Times Square and Rockefeller Center (had to see the giant tree, of course) before road tripping back to Minnesota, where we’ve been since. We had a wonderful Sinterklaas brunch filled with bacon and mimosas to celebrate the Dutch holiday and have since been blasting the Christmas carols.
The past few weeks have been busy, busy, busy as we prepare to leave the USA for a year. I have been working looong hours at the Mall of America–the need for yoga pants and sports bras apparently doesn’t dissipate as the holidays ramp up! Joost has been busy researching and writing a paper for his Master’s thesis regarding our project in Africa. In between that, we’ve been stocking up our first aid kit, buying and wrapping presents, baking, researching visa information, seeing old friends, running, getting vaccinated against various diseases, continuing the never-ending quest to find jeans that fit Joost’s small waist and long legs, building snowmen and spending plenty of time cuddling with Picabo (my dog–the very cutest in the world). I think that the time that I’ve spent typing this blog post has been the longest that I’ve gotten to sit still in about a month and a half!
Joost heads back to the Netherlands on December 28 and I will follow shortly after on December 31–one week from today! It’s crazy to think that I will be gone for almost an entire year. Seems only fitting that I’ll be ringing in the new year on an airplane.
Every year I think that surely life can’t get any better. In 2012, I traveled to Amsterdam, went SCUBA diving around Australia and traveling with friends, graduated, moved from Australia to Minnesota to New York and finally got to live on the same continent as Joost, but I have a feeling 2013 might top that!
We wish you a safe, happy, love-filled holiday season and can’t wait to see and hear from you all soon!