Do any of you have formal arrangements with your spouse in regards to how you spend the holidays with each other's families? In autumn of 2012 when Michael and I got married we hashed out what I think is probably a typical newlywed plan - we would take turns spending the two "biggest" holidays (Thanksgiving and Christmas) with his family and mine.
Thus, the rotation was born. Here's a brief look at where we have been for the holidays these past few years:
- 2012 (living in Michigan): Thanksgiving with his family (Ohio), Christmas with mine (Indiana)
- 2013 (living in Florida): Thanksgiving with some of my family (Kentucky), Christmas with his (Ohio)
- 2014 (living in Pennsylvania then Massachusetts): Thanksgiving with his family (Ohio), Christmas with mine (Massachusetts)
If you've stumbled upon my blog recently, you might be shocked to see that we were living in 4 different states for all 3 of those years - but all of the moving is a sacrifice we have been willing to make while our family is young in order to benefit my husband's career and, therefore, our family (you can read more about that here).
So, we have been all over the place and so has my family (grad school, taking care of other family members, new jobs and big moves across the country, etc.), but we have made our travel plans work according to this "rotation" pretty successfully thus far. It hasn't always been easy, considering sometimes we can drive and other times need to fly (and we've added 2 little boys - and a whole lotta travel gear - into the mix)...but it's been working out alright (I'd be lying, though, if I didn't admit that part of me cannot wait to have our own house and request that everyone come to us!).
According to the rotation schedule, 2015 was our year to spend Thanksgiving with my family and Christmas with my husband's. Naturally, we made plans to be in Ohio in December, but Thanksgiving was a bit of a different story....
Ever since December 2014 we have been living in Massachusetts (where my older sister and her family have been for 6 years), but the rest of my immediate family is still pretty spread out. Not to mention, our lease was coming to an end so we opted to move from our apartment into a townhouse a couple miles down the road - right before Thanksgiving.
Yep, we moved right before a major holiday again.
With everything going on with my family (you know, them all living in 4 different states at the moment) and us moving literally 5 days before the holiday we weren't in a position to travel very far. Quite fortunately for us, being where we are right now means my older sister is right down the road and her in-laws are in New England, so we've been graciously invited to join them for several occasions throughout 2015 (Easter, a weekend trip to the ocean, etc.).
I must admit, it was incredibly nice to be with a handful of family members without hopping on a plane or driving for hours and hours and hours (especially with a 2-year-old and 5-month-old). Plus, we were able to make it a day trip, return home to sleep in our own beds/cribs, and maximize the amount of unpacking in our new place we could do over the long weekend.
I imagine that our Thanksgiving day looked like many of yours, with lots of good food and good company...and perhaps a little bit of watching The National Dog Show (which, by the way, my husband was totally perplexed by because that is just NOT a thing in his family at all).
There's not much more to say other than...it was lovely! But perhaps photographs will better do the day justice than my words....
Here are a few of my favorite family shots:
|^Christmas card photo right there|
|The baby cousins (less than 6 months apart in age!)|
|Peter and his Aunt Christina|
|Making its big holiday debut this year: THE KIDS' TABLE|
My sister's mother-in-law had their home and Thanksgiving table beautifully decorated, so I would be remiss not to share these lovely pictures:
And you'd better believe I didn't hesitate to snap as many photos as I could of the boys all dressed up before a delicious meal had the chance to potentially mess up their outfits:
|5 months old with two teeth already - which means I have a lot of photos of that tongue trying to figure out what those new sharp things in his mouth are ;)|
|Full disclosure: for every photo like this one on the left, there are at LEAST 4 like the ones on the right preceding it :D|
I know I'm nearly a couple months late to the party, but I would love to hear about Thanksgiving in your families as well! Do you eat turkey? Or maybe (my Asian-American husband's favorite Thanksgiving food) lobster? Do you dress up or do you rock sweats? Do you watch the Macy's parade, Dog Show, football game, or none (or all) of the above? Do you travel or stay home? However your family does it, I hope it was a day of true Thanksgiving for all that He has given us!
"If you are grateful for everything, then whatever you have is enough."