Back to the Tundra

After a few great weekends exploring New Orleans and one week from hell (hello, finals), I’m finally back home in Minnesota! Before leaving, I went to “Celebration in the Oaks,” which I’m writing my next Crescent article on, and I found yet another great Thai restaurant on Magazine Street. As for finals, I spent the week finding the best places to study that hadn’t been overrun with other frantic students. My friend Annalise and I ended up studying in a geology lab that I didn’t even know existed until this week. Overall, finals went well, and I can officially say I successfully completed my first semester of college!

I arrived back in Minnesota on Friday, and spent the weekend at my dad’s apartment in Owatonna. This is the first holiday following my parents’ divorce, so it was a little strange, but it was great to spend the weekend with my dad and little sisters. When we got to Owatonna, Dad informed us that he wanted to adopt a cat. If you know me, you know just how much this appeals to me. We took a little trek up to Prairie’s Edge Humane Society in Northfield and spent about an hour playing with all the cats that were up for adoption. Finally, we met the perfect addition to our family, a little black kitten, aptly named Zip. He never seems to sit still, constantly zipping around the room. He was a great early Christmas gift.

On Saturday, the twins, Dad, and I went to an adorable bagel shop in downtown Owatonna. “Old Town Bagels” is a family-run cafe that sells some of the best bagels I have ever tasted. They’re baked fresh every day, and the cream cheese topping is homemade–and absolutely to die for. It’s been dubbed the place to go for the “best bagels in Minnesota” and it’s a title that’s hard to argue. When we got back to the apartment, we sat down to watch some Stranger Things, and I started to draft this blog post. Suddenly, Gracie plopped down next to me. But when I looked up, Gracie was standing next to my dad. It was Emily! She drove down from Fargo just to surprise me. We spent the day watching movies, went out to dinner with our uncle Bill, and had our own little Christmas celebration, just a few weeks early.

Sunday meant heading back to Truman, and spending the day with some cousins from Iowa. My little cousin Scarlett just happens to be a carbon copy of me as a child, and her older sister Naomi a copy of my older sister. Watching them play with our old dolls brought such a feeling of nostalgia that I couldn’t help but join in playing with them. It was also great to talk with their parents, Jacob and Marie, and make up for lost time. I haven’t seen them for a couple months, so catching up was a good time.

And now it’s Monday, I’m sitting with my pets, and I couldn’t be more excited to be back at home with the people that I love the most–my family. I’m thinking about possibly writing a few posts that are a little different than the typical updates, so stay tuned!

xoxo, second sister suzie

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The frost made coating the trees made for a beautiful morning.

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