Christmas, Kisses, and Carols

Around six o’clock at night, a few days after Thanksgiving, was the first heart breaking pang of homesickness I have felt since moving here to Kansas. I was in an aisle full of Christmas type trinkets and candies, wondering what my nephews would want this year. That day at that time, I cried in Target.

This Christmas will be our first away from all our friends and family back home. We would love to go back home for the holidays, but the two modes of transportation are not realistic. It would cost upwards of $900 per person to fly, and driving all the way to California would not be the safest or greatest way to go either. We decided that we would stay here in Kansas and make our own traditions. We’ve been lucky enough to find great friends here and we will be sharing it with them. As excited as I am for new traditions and the fun we will have here, my heart breaks a little bit more every time our families ask us if we are sure we cannot make it out.

This year has been an emotional roller coaster. After being away from home seven months, Steven graduated AIT. We said our goodbyes to California and moved out here to Kansas. We got settled just in time to find out Steven would be deploying. Shortly after Steven deployed, I found out I had a pituitary tumor. Steven’s deployment got cut short and he came home six months early. It’s been a good year with several bumps along the way. I could blame all that plus the fact my hormones are all crazy, but the Christmas season ALWAYS makes me emotional. I cry when something makes me happy, and I try not to if something makes me sad!

This year, it’s definitely a different kind of emotional. Every Christmas Eve I would drive my nephews around in search of the greatest Christmas lights, but this year I will not get to. I will miss out on watching my nephews open their Christmas gifts. I will not get to eat dinner at my parents’ house with my huge, overpopulated family. I will not get to laugh until I have to gasp for air with my cousins while we play Just Dance, pool, and whatever other mischief we can cause.

I’ve been especially nostalgic this year. I’ve made it a point to go to thrift stores to look for ornaments that remind me of ones that my parents have had. I’ve already watched every single one of my favorite Christmas movies. I’m trying to make ornaments out of everything (see above picture). I’m missing home, and what home feels like this time of year. I miss my family. Thanksgiving and Christmas are not the same without them.

I have my husband. This year that means so much more to me than it ever has. I thought for sure I would be spending Thanksgiving and Christmas alone this year. I thought he was going to have to spend it seven thousand miles from home in the hot desert. We have been so lucky! He’s home and he is safe! That’s the best Christmas gift I could ask for.

Back on the subject matter of Nostalgia, my favorite Christmas commercial has been the same since I can remember. I think I always get emotional when I see it, and I have NO IDEA why because it’s not a tearjerker by any means. It’s just one of those things. I can remember seeing it on the television with my grandparents who are both gone now. I remember seeing it in the house I grew up in, sitting next to our warm, brick fireplace. It’s funny how Christmas makes things more meaningful and special. I think that is why I love Christmas so much. It’s important that we appreciate the little things, because before you know it, they become some of our most cherished memories.

Did you cry? It’s ok if you did 😉


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