Christmas was pretty quiet, subdued and simple this year. It's two Christmases since my mom died, and the only people in the house are Ilyn, me and dad. We tried to keep the Christmas spirit alive by putting up the tree the lights early. We never got around to playing any Christmas music though... and in spite of the tree and the lights it didn't feel so Christmas-y for us this year. For the first time in my life I wasn't able to finish Christmas Mass. I had to go home because I wasn't feeling too well. As I write this I'm already feeling OK, having gotten a bit of a rest and some quiet time with Ilyn.
I guess I can never really go back to that time in my life as a child when Christmas was so thrilling and exciting. I didn't have any worries about life back then, never had any responsibilities. It isn't to say I was miserable this time around. No, actually I am quite happy and content with the life I have. I guess I've just come to accept that life is like this now, and I've decided to find happiness wherever and however I can find it. I've got a great job inking Star Wars comics in a season when the new Star Wars film just hit and everything is all abuzz with it. I'm still here, still alive and I never ever take that for granted.
Noche Buena was simple but nice. We had some ham my brother gave us. (My brother isn't with us this year. He's in Manila with his son spending Christmas there.) I also made soup from roasted squash and bell peppers. Even I couldn't believe how good it was. We had some peppermint hot chocolate, some grapes, fruit salad that Ilyn made and just regular plain cheese. We were unable to get a Queso de Bola this year, but that's OK. And for the first time in years we didn't have anything that was even remotely alcoholic. I did have a Dr. Pepper with a slice of lemon, which was just great.
Fireworks came early, as it usually does here in San Pablo. I guess over the last few years a few San Pableños got it in their heads to blow up some firecrackers to greet the coming of December 25. When I was younger I loved firecrackers. I lit up up a box or two of them myself, Right now I'm just not interested in it anymore. And it frightens Bugel so I have to go and try to calm her down and reassure her that nothing's gonna happen to her. Even the faintest firecracker from far away drives Bugel into a panic. Poor dog. We'll have to give her some extra attention come New Year's Eve.
I usually wake up really early, but tomorrow, Christmas Day, I plan on sleeping in. Just stay in bed and sleep until maybe 7 or 8am. Crazy, I know, but considering I usually wake up at 4:30am, that's pretty late for me.