Sunday, January 4, 2009

Back in the Land of Port

Well, I made it back. The drive here was much much easier than the drive down. I spent the night at Kelly and Rob's new house in Castro Valley on Friday night and did the rest of the drive on Saturday. The total drive time was about 13 hours, as it should be. (Including the various potty, food, and gas breaks during which the dogs and I always got out to stretch our legs). My visit home was lots of fun, outside of being sick the entire time. Here are some highlights of my time in the Golden State:
  • Taqueria, my favorite Mexican restaurant in all the world
  • Watching Jeapordy and Wheel of Fortune with Mom, Dad, and Grandmother
  • Seeing Leah after almost 6 months - she is sober, happy and healthy, and I could not be happier for her
  • Visiting Candy Cane Lane
  • Seeing my SLO girls again - especially Corinne, who I hadn't seen since I left - laughing about silly inside jokes ("duh-ber", "bar-rack")
  • Eating Upper Crust, my favorite Italian restaurant in all the world
  • A relaxing Christmas Eve at the Markley's, watching the Family Stone and eating freshly baked chocolate chip cookies
  • Meeting the Randalls' Golden Retriever puppies, Maddie and Buddy, the snuggly, pudgy balls of fluff with precious faces attached
  • Christmas morning, all the joy and wonders of the holiday written across the kids' faces as we sat around the tree
  • New clothes!
  • Watching Bennett and Tommy have lightsaber wars
  • Reading with Ally
  • Going to the movies with the family - a rare treat! - even though it turned out Marley and Me wasn't really the best choice, in light of recent events in the family (but a great film otherwise)
  • Feeling Elodie move
  • The generally lovely and precious holiday season and my beloved family
  • Nine pairs of jeans donated to me by my generous and fashion forward friend Brittany :)
  • Spending time with Arletta, getting Bagel Bakery, wandering aimlessly around the mall, and driving by the beach, just like old times
  • Fun at the Kilzer's and the Running Iron on New Year's Eve
  • An oceanfront lunch with Kimi and Mike
  • Seeing Jenn and discussing possibly living together in the future :)
  • Dinner with the Markleys (including Kate and Tom)
I went to church this morning, and as luck would have it, the Christmas service had been cancelled, and they had it today! (Which was great, because we were all too sick to go on Christmas day.) So I officially celebrated the reason for the season. Thanks for being born, Jesus!

I am glad to be back, but I'll miss everyone, and won't get to have as many CA visits in the winter and spring. :( So if you feel like seeing the snow, we have that here. (It just started up again about half an hour ago.) Come see me. I hope you all had a great holiday season!

Oh - also - I have a roommate! She moved in today. From Wisconsin! More on her later, but it should be a good thing. 


Mom Ryan said...

Hi Colleen, Glad you made it back safe and with less snow and stress!It is an adjustment having you so far away, and it was great you were able to have such a long visit. Sorry we (Dad, you & me) were so sick, but hopefully we're on the mend now. I loved your holiday list; it was a very happy Christmas, but I did miss our Church time, and it felt really good to be back yesterday!! What's your roommate's name? Hope you become good friends, and it all works out well! Miss you!
Love, Mom (hi to Penny&Rocky)

Kayla said...

I really think that Penny and Rocky might like to state their thoughts regarding the trip because I am sure Rocky's trip to my house and cudling with me on my couch would make it on the list :) Enjoy the snow, it will not snow here but I will still of course complain about it being cold at 40 degrees! I am not sure I would make it outside of CA... Wish you were visiting here soon too!

Rob, Kelly, and Bennett said...

Sooo glad that the trip back was as it should be. It was a great Christmas, wasn't it? Loved the high lights; I think they inspired me to post the light saber video on our blog. This next stretch between visits is probably going to feel very long...we will make it through, though.
Love you.

Mom Ryan said...

Ok, so I went on the Markleyville blog, & I don't get the "cowbell" remark, but I guess it's very special!!


Much love!

Corinne said...

Hey Colleen, I am glad you made it back home safely!! And much faster than you made it down here. And I wanted to say it was so great to see you too!! What an honor to make it onto your list. It must be great to have roommate. It has been quite some time since you last had one, but it is nice not to live alone! Fill us in when you have time. Hope to see you again soon!
Love you! :)

tara said...

Just finally remembering to check the blogs, loved your list! We loved the visit, and everyone here appreciates that the pups made the list. You won't believe how big they are, changing every day! Went for our first walks this weekend, pretty exciting!

Love you!