New Years Eve at Second City Dysfunctional Holiday Review.

Artificial Insemination! (Or Valgina’s New Year)

New Year's at Second City Dysfunctional Holiday Review and an Illini Rose Bowl Party

New Year’s Eve at Second City Dysfunctional Holiday Review

I have spent every New Years that I can remember with my best friends from grade school. OK, so maybe that isn’t exactly true as I do remember two times where I didn’t see them, but basically, it’s not a New Year’s celebration unless I’m with them. It’s also usually not a New Year’s unless it’s the day before the big day and we still don’t know what we’re doing. But this year, we all surprised ourselves and managed to plan ahead.

New Years Eve at Second City Dysfunctional Holiday Review.

The night started off at Fuego for some Mex food. I met Jen and Adam at their house and we headed off to the restaurant. Due to her work kidnapping her, Nadia was running a bit late but that was OK as it took a while for us to get seated and we were able to get some yummy tableside guac and drinks. I had two strawberry coladas that tasted like milkshakes and were the tastiest drinks ever.

New Years Eve at Fuego. Drinking a strawberry colada.

Nad finally arrived with her husband Bryan and Joel in tow.

We exchanged Christmas presents. Nad really liked the Kobayashi trading card and cloud necklace I got her and Jen liked the photo frame and softest sweetest socks I got for her. Jen got me some hot cocoa mix and a Starbucks and movie theater gift cards and Nad got me a cupcake cookbook complete with a cupcake tester and spatula. The first cupcake recipe I turned to contained smoked salmon. Score!

Dinner came. Jenny’s tostadas looked like they would feed ten people. I just ordered an appetizer (thankfully because I was pretty full on chips and guac) of shrimp and scallop tamales. They were OK, but the sauce on top was way too hot for my taste and the shrimp were those baby shrimp that come in fried rice that I don’t consider to be real.

After dinner we headed down the block for our show. We went to see the Second City Dysfunctional Holiday Review. None of us had seen Second City before so that was kind of awesome, even though it was the touring group (how the first time I go to SC is a touring group when the real group is 12 miles away, I have no clue). The show was funny though! I wished that there was more improv, they only did two improv and the rest were sketches. Artificial insemination! Hopefully I’ll be able to catch another show soon!

New Years Eve at Second City Dysfunctional Holiday Review.

The show ended with 15 minutes before the big countdown. We grabbed some champagne and noisemakers and awaited the big moment. They brought out Father Time and Baby New Year and counted down. Come midnight I celebrated with my best friends, and toasted some toasts.

New Years Eve at Second City Dysfunctional Holiday Review.

Soon after, Jen and Adam called it a night and Nad, Bryan, Joel, and I headed to a house party at one of her coworker’s place. The party was fun. The woman whose house it was sings with this guitar dude. So they played music and later it turned into karaoke style where we all got to sing. Then Joel told a joke and totally killed the party. Just saying.

Bryan nicknamed me “Valgina” and I kind of hate him for it because I kind of like it. And then one of Nad’s coworkers asked me “Are you seriously with him?” And then I said way way too loudly “OH GOD NO!!!!” And then the guitar player started hitting on me and told me that he thought I was a foreigner because of my broken English.

New Years eve house party.

And then around 4:30 or so we called it a night and I went back to my car. I was frozen out of the front and so I had to crawl in through the back door, and scrape the hell out of all the ice that had frozen on my car. But alas I finally cleared it out enough and headed back home.

More photos from New Year’s Eve at Second City Dysfunctional Holiday Review:



New Year’s Day Illini Rose Bowl Party

I slept entirely too little. I got home at around 6am then woke up at maybe 10am. 🙁 Then I basically bummed around until it was time to head to JoeJoe’s for the Rose Bowl. Quite honestly, I don’t think I’ve ever watched a Rose Bowl game in my life. But the Illini were playing so I was totally psyched.

I, of course, arrived at Joe and Alina’s way too early and told Joe that I must not have taken his advice on a New Year’s resolution. Then more people came and it was game time!

There was lots of yummy food like brushetta and dips people made. And Joe tried out his new drink pouring machine and it seemed to work.

Illini Rose Bowl Party. Joe and his drink machine.

The Illini…well…sucked. I guess that’s enough said on that.

What didn’t suck? The phenomenal Illini Rose Bowl cake I made! I spent three days on this thing and dyed my hands completely blue in the process. It was a 2-layer cookie cake with blue frosting, an Illini I made of orange rice krispies, and orange roses I made from gum paste. Everyone agreed that it was very sugary.

Illini Rose Bowl Cake.

Illini Rose Bowl Cake.

Illini Rose Bowl Cake.

About three quarters from the game I leaned over to Joe to ask him what USC stood for. I really never had bothered to find that out. He said University of Southern California. It was a toss up for me between Southern California and South Carolina, but I had had no clue.

Whatever team they were they were much hotter than ours. Sorry Illini, it is true. Glen made fun every time the announcer said “John Davis Booty” and Julie was sad that there was no one named “Dick” on our team to tackle him and how it was too bad he wasn’t the tight end.

Alas, the Illini lost. No, wait. The Illini were slaughtered. Throw the damn ball once or twice, will ya???

Illini Rose Bowl Party.


I hope everyone had a very Happy New Year!!! Can’t wait to see how this year turns out!


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Hi, I'm Val. I spent most of my 20s in a standstill, unable to pick which path in life I wanted to take. I wanted the nomadic life of a traveler but also wanted the husband, the condo, and the kitten. Unable to decide which life I wanted more, I did nothing. When I turned 30 I’d had enough of putting my life on hold and decided to start “choosing my figs.” So, I quit my job, bought a one-way ticket to Europe, and traveled for three years. Now I'm back in Chicago, decorating my apartment in all the teal, petting my cats, and planning my next adventure.

1 Comment
  • dragonbane
    January 4, 2008at1:13 am

    That cookie-cake is SO AWESOME!

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