Wrapping up the fall semester...

just in time for Christmas. 

I took my Dutch exam today. It was bittersweet because my teacher is going back to the Netherlands. Our class will have a new instructor for Dutch 2.

For our last class, Chris Van Wolffelaar gave us little, painted, clay clogs, just touristy gewgaws, but precious all the same. She also gave us pepernoten for Sinterklaas. They are like little gingerbread cookies. They come in a mix with gum drops and these sweet, colored candies that are molded into shapes of presents, horses and torches.

The reason behind these shapes will make more sense if you read a brief background of Sinterklaas: http://www.stnicholascenter.org/pages/netherlands/

On the night of Sinterklaas, the children put their shoes out, and "Sinterklaas" leaves the pepernoten in them. My instructor realized when she was telling us the story that it may be considered gross to eat candy straight out of your shoes...She was not certain if everyone's parents did this or if some put the candy in wrapping first.


Also, I have a new coffee combination that you may be too embarrassed to recite, but if you do you will find it delicious.

It is a venti lite ice coffee with egg nog and 2 pumps of caramel brulee and 2 pumps of chai.
It is very festive.

But because it is so long, and I do get embarrassed, and customers save 25 cents by reusing any mug, I always wash my cup and just bring it back; that way I save myself the long-winded order.

However, apparently I mutter, actually, I know I do because my dad has reminded me repeatedly, the barista heard "Alana" rather than "Lauren." I thought it was such a coincidence when this happened on three separate occasions. I took this picture so I could put it on Instagram with a caption like: I got "Alana" on my cup 3 times in a row. How weird!"

But...before I posted it, I realized it was just the same cup...that I had reused; I had just forgotten. What is even more embarrassing is I told the last barista, on the third time, what a strange coincidence it all was. I wonder what she was thinking?

This is just something I was staring at for too long while I was lying on my floor, as I often do. I think the raised parts of the plaster make a shape that looks like a gator's head. Don't you think? Maybe you have too look at it for too long.

The gator is looking off to the side, it's nostril is on the right side, it's eye is in the upper middle of the frame, it's mouth is slightly open and facing downward at an angle.

See it?
Also, do you hear those voices?


This is a mini, fake, Christmas tree that I dug up from the closet when I was moving my stuff out of the house.

I used to decorate it with lots of tiny ornaments each year and put it in my room, next to my bed.

I have heard about people decorated Christmas tree with popcorn and cranberries and I had wanted to try it. It actually doesn't look like garbage. Surprised?

The deep red contrasted with the fluffy white is actually quite nice against the faux evergreen. I put it in the hall's lounge.


I am leaving here for winter break in a week.

My first stop is SF's house, and then I am going to visit my parents in the mountains.

I plan to do some video blogging during that time though I do not know why you would want to watch a summary retelling of my life.

However, it is fun to make video blogs, and they will help me remember things when I'm grey. Also, now I have a video camera, albeit point and shoot, so I might as well.


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