Every week, without fail, I make time to call my grandparents. They fly up north every November for Thanksgiving, and it’s always a treat. When I was just a little girl, I used to sit by the front door awaiting their arrival because I was so excited. Now that I’m older, my preparation for their arrival isn’t exactly the same, however, I still love that they visit me every year, even if only for a few days.
Because our methods of communication are now more effective than ever, we may live in separate worlds than our friends and family, but we have the opportunity to stay connected. Several phone calls – or even just one – can be a great way to stay up to speed with all of your loved ones. Through these digital methods of communicating, we receive bits and pieces of updates on what’s currently happening in each other’s lives.
No matter what FaceTime features are added to the iPhones that we cling to daily, being with people you care about means so much more, and it will always take the cake. The holidays oftentimes bring families together and make for joyous reunions all around the country. However, there’s a lot of hustle that comes with traveling. Navigating through an airport or resisting boredom during a long car ride are by no means easy tasks. Regardless of all the reasons not to, year after year, families of all sizes hop on flights and pile into cars to go see their families for the holidays. Even if only for a short time, they want to spend these magical days in the company of those who love them most.
Your Grandchildren and Their First Holidays
For most grandchildren, these months are the most magical of their year (their birthdays, a close second). Children thrive in the holiday spirit no matter what their families celebrate. Seeing children in their early years of youth provide a time unlike any other, for they haven’t learned the complicated-ness of the world as many of us now know it. Although parents and grandparents can’t bear to hear it, grandchildren are eventually going to grow into those chubby cheeks of theirs. Santa Claus (or Hannukah Harry, as my Mom created) will only bring his strongest magic for a number of years.
Making cookies and hanging up decorations are some of the most fond memories that children will remember in years to come. The gooey treats leave marks on their hearts, but so do the people who they eat them with. Seeing the looks on your kids’ faces as they open gifts is just not the same unless you’re seated right next to them. If you can be there, you should be there.
These times are centered around being thankful for the blessings we have in our lives. Now more than ever, we should take the time to be thankful for the ability to travel so many miles within just a few hours. It may be a little pricey, but there’s no time better than the holidays to invest in a trip to see your loved ones. Travel is oftentimes lengthy and flights aren’t a dime-a-dozen, but we should always go the distance for the ones we love.
Long Distance Relationships Are Tough, but Worth It
In college, many students venture away from their roots and choose to travel to schools many miles away from home. This reality hit me like a train, as my three best friends were no longer just a five-minute drive down the street. We text in our group chat almost daily and often speak on the phone, but I still miss them every day. I miss them in the seats next to me at our favorite coffee shop, and I miss seeing their faces without the unavoidable iPhone pixelation.
Because of our nearly constant communication, we keep each other in the social “loop” of our own respective lives. We’ve come to learn the names and characteristics of our friends’ friends, or their “school friends,” as they’ve come to be called. However, being without them (not to mention hundreds of miles away) is tough to say the least. Last November, three of us – Anna, Caroline and I – traveled to Boston University to visit Maia. It was going to be a surprise. We got on a train, only to realize halfway through the trip it was the wrong train.
The amount of stress between the three of us was at an all-time high, and thoughts of potentially turning back circulated. We knew of the fun we would have if we finally got to all reunite, so we figured out how to get going in the right direction and continued our journey. It ended up being one of the best weekends ever.
The time we spend together, physically in each other’s presence, is not to be taken for granted. This holiday season, you should go that distance, no matter how far or seemingly stressful it may be. Go so you can hear genuine laughter fill up a room. Go so you can see the looks on your kids’ faces as they open the gift they’ve always dreamed of. It means so much more being surrounded by those you love, especially when they’re not in a tiny screen, and instead stand right next to you.
Where do you plan to travel this holiday season? Tell us about your holiday traditions with your family.
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