Since when is it the MIDDLE of December? I'm almost positive that yesterday was like...July. Okay, maybe not. But it doesn't seem like I should be graduating college tomorrow. And Christmas surely isn't next weekend...is it?!
November started off with a trip to Davie Co to see friends and Zach's mom the first weekend of the month. We froze our butts off at a bonfire on Saturday night--but we were in good company so the weather didn't bother us much. If I had known then that it was going to be as cold as it is now, I wouldn't have been complaining about the weather then! It's always nice to see good friends, and I got to see Katy one more time before she had her baby. We stayed with Zach's mom that night and the next day we went to their family reunion. I got to meet some of his distant family. :)
My weeks were filled with homework and substitute teaching, writing papers and preparing for finals. I stay in Cary most nights, but come home on Tuesday nights to get my weekly dose of my family and kitty. I'm moving in with Zach for good in a few weeks, and I can't wait to have kitty living with me full time again...it's like losing custody of your kid, except not really. He's just been living with grandma for a little while.
Speaking of school and finals--I'M FINISHED! I finished up classes (and three of my finals) in the first week of December, and finished my last two online finals last weekend. Four of my five grades are in, and they're all A's! I'm just waiting on one more--guaranteed to be no less than a B. Looks like I'm going to make Dean's List again and graduate with a 3.35 GPA. Not quite cum laude, but it'll do just fine. Now instead of spending my weeknights reading for school or working on papers, I spend my nights reading or doing whatever I want to...it's been really weird adjusting to all this free time, but I'm not complaining. I love being able to read for fun again. It's also made me want to work more often. While I was in school, I didn't really want to work on my days off because I was so swamped with schoolwork and other things...and with my job, I'm not on a certain schedule, I determine when I work and when I don't. But in the last two weeks when I haven't had class, I've wanted to work almost every day. I don't have anything else to do while everyone is at work, so why not?! I did treat myself to a day off today, and since graduation is tomorrow (just about 25 hours from now...), I'm officially on what I guess you could call "Christmas vacation" from work.
To attempt to recover from the crazy couple of months Zach and I have had, we decided to make November a very low key month--we're trying to concentrate on saving money and getting out of debt; we recognize that money is the #1 thing couples argue about and we're fighting against that. We haven't been going out to dinner at all unless we're out already or it's a special night. We're not spending frivolously, and we're watching our finances very carefully. I had to spend a TON of money on gas driving back and forth to Greensboro twice a week, but now that i'm finished with school, my weekly finances have dropped significantly. Not having a lot of money to work with has definitely helped me to reduce my budget every week--I could only work so much while I was in school! I'm so glad that we're focusing on fighting against the negative things that many people in relationships come across; we're planning to live happily ever after, regardless of what statistics say.
Since we're trying to save money, we've decided that (hopefully) every month we'll have one date night. Last month, we went to PF Changs and then to see the new Harry Potter movie. We haven't gone out for December yet, but because of all the excitement of graduation and Christmas getting ready to roll around, we might not make it out. It's wonderful to lay around the house and be lazy all day, but it's also nice to put on "real pants" and go out sometimes, too. I'm not one of those girls who has to be taken out on the town constantly to realize how much i'm loved. I love staying in and cooking dinner together most nights, although since we've both been under the weather off and on the last few weeks, we haven't been doing anything extravagant. In fact, we had soup twice last week. And that's perfectly okay with me. My relationship is not perfect--but it's perfect for me.
Thanksgiving brought many, many things to be thankful for. A wonderful set of family and friends, an amazing and loving boyfriend, almost a college degree, and lots of other things (i'm too lazy to sit here and list them all). The last 5 months have definitely been some of the greatest times of my life; I wouldn't change any of it for the world. I'm looking forward to Christmas, moving, and the new year--2011 is going to start off a whole new world of things for me; no school, a new home, hopefully a *real* job at some point, and finally being done with everything from my past and beginning to focus on the future. I think i'll go drink my coffee and think about just how wonderful life really is right now :)