Hello there! I survived my semester and was rewarded with a three week trip to visit my family in Iowa. In the seven years since I moved to New York, I’ve only spent one Christmas with my family, the year I lived in Minneapolis. It was awesome to be there. Dan was able to come for the first time in a long time; he hadn’t seen my dad since our wedding! We had fun wandering around Mason City on the last day of his visit and talking about how nice it actually is (something I couldn’t really see until recently).
Sometimes I have a little fantasy about moving back to the midwest–usually when I’m writing out my rent check for my stupid little one bedroom. I don’t think we’ll ever do it because I really love living on the east coast, but damn would it be cheap!
Because we left four days before Christmas, flying was out of the question. It was just way too expensive. Instead, we took an Amtrak, which was several hundred dollars cheaper. I’m not sure how I feel about the trip. I will actually write a post next week about traveling by train because I know I was scouring the interwebz for information before I left.
After three wonderful weeks with my family, I headed home and began almost two weeks of sickness. A stomach bug that thankfully only lasted a couple of days (a little going away gift from my nephews and dad) and then a nasty cold that had me laid up on the couch for a week. I’m very happy to report that I felt 100% back to normal yesterday and I’m finally able to start exercising again! The new thing I like to do is 20-30 minutes on the elliptical and then 15-20 minutes of various strength training, such as push-ups, squats, lunges, etc. If I’ve learned anything from my girl Jillian Michaels, it’s that alternating between upper and lower body forces your blood to shoot back and forth (or something), making your workout more effective, so that’s what I did. It feels good to be working out again, it’s been awhile. Pair that with all of the Culver’s frozen custard I was eating while in Iowa (OMG it’s so good, there’s nothing like it), I’ve packed on some pounds. I’m not too worried about it, I’m getting back on track with my eating, although I find myself reaching for dessert a lot more than I should, and that plus exercise makes me feel pretty awesome.
So now I’m in the process of preparing for my semester in Argentina!! I’ve been cooking like a crazy person in order to fill our freezer to the brim with meals for Dan while I’m gone. I will post about that separately as well. I’m now in contact with my host mother, and she seems very nice, so it’s all becoming very real. I’m excited and nervous! I will be launching a blog in the next week or two where I will document my semester and talk about the whole study abroad experience, including the scholarship I was awarded, so keep your eye out for a link to that.
This weekend Dan and I are heading to Providence, RI for a mini-getaway together since it’s the last weekend we have alone before I leave for five long months. I am really excited to get out of town with him!