Okay, sorry, I wanted to finish before but between being busy and various parties... oh well.
WEDNESDAY: The family Christmas party, with my grandfather, aunt, uncle, cousins, cousin's boyfriend and this year, my brother's girlfriend. It was good fun, as always; we had hot apple cider by the fire and we mingled for a while before opening presents and then playing a few games-- like "pass the package" where the person who answers a Christmas trivia question takes off one layer of wrapping paper from a gift, and the one that finds the final present gets to keep it (I lost).
Then there was the search for the pickle ornament, with a prize for the winner. My cousin won, after much frantic pawing through the tree.
And the Yankee Swap, where we passed around a box and each person took one wrapped gift, and either unwrapped it or exchanged it for an already unwrapped gift. The little bottles of alcohol were very popular, but alas, my mom's gotten increasingly bad at picking desirable non-alcoholic gifts as time goes on, and I wasn't allowed to trade for the alcohol, obviously. End result, I got tissues, which I afterwards gave to Shrewd, who had a cold. My older cousin got the risque tissues, which said "Jingle My Bells" with crotch shots of elves. My mom swears it was an accident...
Then we mostly sat around and talked again until they left and we started to clean up.
THURSDAY: I went to see Ryter, as I had promised to go down with him to help him unpack his mother's apartment (she apparently moved in three years ago and never unpacked). He's been avoiding seeing her one-on-one lately. So I drove all the way back to Durham, met up with Ryter, we got in the car and started to drive-- and got a phone call from her, saying she had forgotten she had an appointment that day and could we reschedule. Grrrr...
So we drove back, and before I could drive home or anything it started to snow. So I spent the night. Which was okay, but... bah. His mom can be vexing at times.
FRIDAY: I drove back early in the morning because my grandmother was coming up in the evening. My grandmother, while a very nice woman, has a tendency to pick fights without realizing she is doing so... especially with my sister. So I came home, slept on the couch for the weekend and tried not to get entangled in arguments. We also opened presents, and thus ended Christmas.
The weekend was mostly spent hiding in my room, but on Monday I drove to see Ryter for New Year's Eve. WE didn't do much on the Eve, just hung out and kept each other up until midnight, toasted, and went to bed. New Year's Day I was supposed to go down to Mass and see family for a big brunch, but the snow was too heavy, so instead we just got ready for his New Year's Party, which was tiki-themed and had a surprising number of the invites show up despite the weather. The only one who didn't was his former Japanese professor. That was fun.
I wound up spending the night again because it was so late when everyone left. Then today we cleaned up after the party before I headed back here.
On the plus side, I cleaned his shower during our preparations. I burned my lungs on the bleach, but the weird scunge is gone. That made me very happy.