Home for the holiday

Updated: January 27, 2006, 4:41 PM ET

Editor's note: Temple senior Candice Dupree is sharing a diary with ESPN.com throughout the 2005-06 season.

Dec. 27, 2005

Candice Dupree
Joseph Labolito/WireImage.comESPN experts voted Candice Dupree one of the top five forwards in the country.

Hey everybody! It's that time again. Yeah, I know it seems like I just spoke to you, but that's a clear indicator of how fast this year has come and gone.

Let me bring you up to speed on some things. We beat No. 15 Georgia and our Big 5 rival, Villanova, last week going into the holiday break. Following the Georgia win, we got into the Christmas spirit with our annual Christmas party. Any holiday around here is fun because we love to get together and party. We have a spending limit, but everyone almost always goes over budget for Secret Santa. I mean, one of my teammates got the new Jordans from her Secret Santa!

The highlight of the party had to be the serenade by one of our scout team players. With Alicia Keys' "You Don't Know My Name" playing in the background, he serenaded our manager! Everyone in the room was cracking up, some from his skit and some from the second-hand embarrassment!

The following day, we gave gifts to two less-fortunate families. I guess you would consider it community service, but I look at it as an opportunity for us to give back to others. The families were very appreciative and it was a good feeling seeing the smiles on their faces.

Then it was time to head home to Tampa for a few days and spend some quality time with the fam! You don't realize how much you miss being in the comfort of your own home until you go back and sleep in your bed and get some good home cooking. I also got to see my twin sister, who came home for the holiday as well. Yes, I said twin. We are fraternal twins who are total opposites of each other. But we are very close, as we should be, and I enjoyed seeing her. My mom and younger sister came to the game against Georgia and they will be at our game against Tennessee, so it's almost like I have never left them! While I was home, I also went flying with my stepfather in his plane. I had a good time but I paid for it later in the day. I was so nauseous afterwards!

Christmas morning came and we all exchanged gifts. I was really excited to give my mom her gift. I gave her my USA Basketball jersey, framed and, like I thought, she loved it! I got a PlayStation Portable (PSP) from my mom. Uh oh!! When I play video games, which is every now and then, I tend to get frustrated when the game doesn't do what I want it to do. I realized that the older I get, the worse I get at these games. I guess I just don't have it like I used to. My family got a kick out of me getting aggravated, so they just sat there and laughed at me the whole time. The next day, I had to head back to Philly and get back to business as usual.

Well, the year 2005 is coming to a close and it definitely went by very fast. When I put this past year in perspective, I realize that the key to me having a good year was my approach to everything. I did everything with a purpose and it paid great dividends for me and my family. Look out '06!! I hope you all have had a good year and I wish you all a prosperous 2006.

-- Can

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