#WeekendCoffeeShare – Finally Winning at Christmas Party


Good morning! Please grab a mug of something and join me on this gloomy Saturday.

The weather’s been cloudy, hazy, and cold all week. Basically, just your typical winter weather around here. A few snowflakes fell yesterday afternoon. It was more of an annoyance than a spectacle. The weatherman had informed me there’s a big storm brewing in Northern California and it’s gathering strength as we chat. We shall see how many inches of snow this storm will dump in the upcoming days.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you I had fun this week attending the company’s annual Christmas party. It was held in a movie theater this year. Before the pandemic, it was held at the office where there was an assortment of fancy pastries. In 2020, the party was held remotely, and 2021 was held partially remote with limited seating at the office. This year was the first in-person party in two years.

The movie theater seats were leather and wide with push-button reclining and heating, not to mention it came with a tray table for food. I may not have been to too many movie theaters in the last decade or so but this has to top my list as the most luxurious movie theater.

Too bad it’s so far from my house, otherwise I’d visit more often. It took me nearly 45 minutes to get there and as much I enjoyed the drive, my mind was more focused on the rumbling of my stomach. So I was glad to see the table of tortillas, baked beans, pulled pork, and rice when I arrived at the theater, just what I was wanting, savory food.

After the speeches from the company founder and president as well as the announcement for Employee of the Year, it was time for the part I had been anticipating – prize drawing. Over the years, I have become deeply invested in the raffle drawing, donating money to the various charities chosen by the company where 1-dollar equals one raffle ticket. This year, I donated a total of $100 to two different charities, hoping to get lucky for the first time.

Out of so many prizes, I put my raffle tickets toward random cash envelopes, Nintendo Switch, and the grand prize of an all-paid vacation. As I watched the whole thing slowly unfolded, my hope began to fade. Who am I kidding? I thought. My luck hasn’t been good in years, why would I think I would win this year?

Just then, the ticket for the final random cash envelope was pulled and suddenly, I heard my name called.

Oh my gosh, I thought and jumped up, is this real?

Even now, as I was writing this, I’m still wondering whether my name was really called. They could’ve said “Yvonne” instead of “Yinglan”. Is there a Yvonne in the company?

The entire Finance team cheered loudly as I jumped up and ran down the steps to collect my prize – $200 cash. My hands shook and heart pounded. Frankly, I was surprised I hadn’t taken a tumble on the way down or trip on the way back up the steps. It was exhilarated, if there’s a word to describe it, like when I got awarded trophies back in grade school.

It turned out mom didn’t see it despite signing up to watch the party from home (since we work for the same company). It turned out she turned it off when the company announced that it’ll be supporting a LGBTQ charity in 2023. I only found out the day after when she told me not to donate for next year’s raffle.

“Why not?” I’d asked.

She didn’t like that the company was going to support a LGBTQ charity even though I corrected her that it was one of three charities. The other two charities were not LGBTQ related. She didn’t listen and even accused me of donating to one of them this year. It’s 2022, I wanted to say, grow up.

In a way, I was glad she didn’t attend the party in person because she would’ve complained all the way home about the food (she hates Mexican food), about the charities, and about the movie we watched (Black Panther: Wakanda Forever).

#weekendcoffeeshare is hosted by Natalie of Natalie the Explorer. I appreciate you stopping by and hope to chat again same time next week.

26 thoughts on “#WeekendCoffeeShare – Finally Winning at Christmas Party

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