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Choosing to Travel at Christmas to Visit Family or Friends

Updated on December 22, 2011
My Great Aunt Betty's Angel Christmas Tree Topper.  We love Aunt Betty, and will miss seeing her this Christmas, and everyone else.
My Great Aunt Betty's Angel Christmas Tree Topper. We love Aunt Betty, and will miss seeing her this Christmas, and everyone else. | Source
Source

To Travel or Not To Travel

Over the last two decades, traveling at Christmas was something we have always considered. You see, we moved away from the main family group about 13 years ago, and even before that there was the question of traveling from far away states during the college years.

We understand it was our decision to move away. We did make sure though, that before we left, that we could return fairly often, or at least during Christmas. In doing so, we learned a lot over the years and have changed up our plans and how we look at things.

As you likely know, to travel anytime by flying or driving long distances just costs a lot of money. In a hard financial time for the whole country, it seems to be harder than ever. Do you go into debt to travel to see family, or not? We have done that. In some ways, we are still paying for it, but we wouldn't change that.

For instance, my Father died this last year, much sooner than we expected he would, at 67. You can imagine that every moment spent was worth it to be with him. Also, any time for the kids to get to be with grandparents and cousins, aunts and uncles are treasured times for sure. I wouldn't change a thing.

Now however, now that my boys are much older, we are staying home more at Christmas. It is like a whole new era, you could say. When we go to visit family, we may go in the Summer time, or they may come to visit us as well. Its a give and take thing. We also have to make hard calls, like this year we neither went to California (where I am from) for the Summer, OR for Christmas. We had an opportunity to see another part of the country we had never seen before. There is always something to give up, to gain another good thing. I wish it weren't that way.

I guess the bottom line that I have gone by, and that I have not regretted, is the going with my gut, and going with what seems like I would regret the least of all. I bounce things off my husband of course, and he does the same with me. Maybe we could cut more corners on a regular basis and go out to see people more. That is another option. Never let others make you feel badly though, whatever you decide. Your own family is the most important that you have to look out for. People will either understand or not, but you can only do what you can do.

One thing that helps me, is to take a lot of pictures, making a lot of memories. Life is just so precious, and we all can only do what we can do. You have to make the wisest decisions in regards to travel, then be content and enjoy whatever you have chosen. I believe that life circumstances and our intuitive natures can help us to know if we need to change things up a little bit.

I will always be thankful for any time spent with my family over the years. I love them all, and friends are right up there. There are so many ways to stay in touch now, more than ever, so we can visit in other ways perhaps. That way, people don't feel like such strangers when you DO get together, and you can also just maximize the times that you all do have together. Whether family or friends, we are on this journey all together and taking the time to travel is a gift you can give to others, and vice versa. Make sure to thank those that do come your way, they may have sacrificed a lot!

We will be home this Christmas, it will be a small gathering, just the four of us. Later, we will see my Parents that live here. The next day, we will be driving up to see the other set of parents, and I feel so blessed to have what I have. So thankful for family. For my Dad that passed away this year, we will miss you dearly.

My best wishes to you and yours as you travel or stay home this Christmas. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Poll

Will you be traveling this Christmas to see Family and Friends?

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    • oceansnsunsets profile imageAUTHOR

      Paula 

      6 years ago from The Midwest, USA

      Hi Steph, thank you for that. It is so interesting, because so much is involved, and yet it is our family, so of course we want to go on even longer trips over mountains, etc, like that. While tough sometimes I am sure, or tiring, it is so great you give this gift to your children. It would be so easy to not visit family, in some ways. They are getting big so quickly, and we can't go back and decide to do it later. Now is that time. I think its great you do it, but hear you on the strain part. My boys are now 14 and 18, so we are a little bit ahead of you.

      I bet the mountains are pretty, and I wish you a safe and nice time with your family on your trip to visit the rest of the family. One other thing we did, was to invite others, even from far away, over once in a while. They sometimes come! It makes the times apart much better, and the burden isn't always on you. Providing just an invite really surprised me with what it gave in results. Thanks for your visit and vote and comment. :)

    • stephhicks68 profile image

      Stephanie Hicks 

      6 years ago from Bend, Oregon

      Hi oceansnsunsets, very interesting hub. We moved away from my family 5 1/2 years ago, too. My father is 64, so the loss of your dad this year at 67 is startling and hits close to my heart. To visit my mom and dad, my sister and her family and most of my extended family is a 6-7 hour drive over the mountains. We do it several times a year, including over Christmas, but it is a stress and strain on me, my husband and our four children (ages 8-14). This hub was interesting and helpful. Rated up! Best, Steph

    • oceansnsunsets profile imageAUTHOR

      Paula 

      6 years ago from The Midwest, USA

      Hi Ann, let me think on that, and look around for one to post. I did post some pictures of part of my family in my hub about my Dad, not long ago, I will try to find the link and drop that here.

    • anndavis25 profile image

      anndavis25 

      6 years ago from Clearwater, Fl.

      Please post a picture of your family

    • oceansnsunsets profile imageAUTHOR

      Paula 

      6 years ago from The Midwest, USA

      Hello Ann, Yes, it IS the question.... So many things to weigh out. I love sending and receiving Christmas cards as well, and we are sending out a photo of our family this year. At the very least, others can see how big the kids are, and something we did this Summer, etc. In time, we will see people again or another time of the year.

      Yes, I will miss my Dad dearly. It will be ok though, and we have memories and photos of time past, as well as hope for the future. Very precious to us all. So glad you stopped by and left a comment. :)

    • anndavis25 profile image

      anndavis25 

      6 years ago from Clearwater, Fl.

      To travel or not to travel, that is the question. You're right, it's expensive. We do have to weigh the situation. I hope you have a restful and meaningful Christmas with your family this year. You will miss your Dad, I know. God Bless.

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