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I’m back! Back in freezing cold, 18 degrees Fahrenheit, Chicago. At lest there is no snow on the ground, I do appreciate that.

My two weeks in Miami went by quicker than I had anticipated. Coming back the morning of the 1st didn’t help matters much either. It seem like the last two two days went by in a blur, and wham, now I’m here again. My apartment was exactly as I left it. I didn’t bother thinking about it at all while away, until a few days ago, when I thought, what if something happened? I brushed it aside thinking, nah, someone would have called me or emailed if something went wrong.

I got home and I truly appreciated my anal, obsessive, compulsive ways with order. I found everything in it’s place. Dishes washed, bed made,and everything picked up and put away, as I had left it. I really don’t like coming home to a messy place. I had a plan in mind which is what I am doing today, wash all dirty clothes, clean around a bit, especially the kitchen and the bathroom, buy groceries, post pictures on FB, wash my car, drop things off to the Salvation Army and start reading for classes. I have to say I’ve done a lot of it so far, so things are on target. We gotta start the new year right.

The stay in Miami was great. A lot of family time, sprinkled with shopping, and touristing. There is always some new place to visit and new surroundings to get to know. We had delicious food at home; my mom makes a mean turkey and an even better pernil (pork). We also ate out at the Rusty Pelican, delicious fish, and Versailles which offered very nice homemade style Cuban food.

We went to malls for shopping, what seemed like every day. It was Christmas after all. The boys played golf and the girls got to sleep-in. I got to see areas of Miami I had not seen before, like Coral Gables, Coconut Grove, Brickell and South Beach. We took a weekend trip to Cassadaga, St Augustine and Jacksonville. We saw friends and lots of family. We visited, we ate, we drank and I think every single person, maybe except Sophie, gained weight.

It was truly a good getaway from it all. I took the book I requested for my students for this quarter, in the hopes I would start reading it. That didn’t happen, of course. I did start reading Eat, Pray, Love (finally) but the reading was done mostly on the planes, so I’m still not even close to being halfway there.

It was good to see my parents almost settled in their new place. It still feels a little too new, too messy, too unfamiliar, but I think they are in the right place and with time all adjustments will fall into place. The weather was great too. I think the coldest it got was close to 45F one day and that was it. The rest of the time it was an average of 65F, you really can’t beat that.

I was worried that the questions about my love life would abound. But they didn’t. Apparently, relationship status is not as important these days as location. The most common question I got during the holidays was “So, when are you moving to Miami?” I kept thinking, “but I just moved to Chicago!” Again, that doesn’t seem to be relevant. Miami , apparently, is the place to be. We’ll see, who knows, for now I’m in this freezer and intend to stay put at least through the summer. After that we’ll see. Once my lease is up, I will have to make decisions about staying, going, moving or not. I’ll keep you posted.

How were your holidays? I’ve been catching up on blogs here and there, but haven’t really read in-depth. So, let the holiday stories roll, ok? Share the highlights at least, I’m dying to know 😉

I’ll leave you with some of my favorite photos from the holidays. And may this be a truly great start to a wonderful new years. Cheers!

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