I paid for my tickets today for my family and I to go home for Christmas! My husband was able to get 3-1/2 weeks off so we're all going together. I'm glad because I didn't think I could handle all four kids on the plane by myself. Phew! The tickets cost a fortune, I actually cringed while paying for them, but it will be worth it. I haven't been home for Christmas in 6 years and I have found that I am most homesick during the holiday season so I'm looking forward to not having to deal with my own emotional roller coaster.
The last time my husband and I were home for Christmas was 2000 and Emi had just been born. My brother and his wife had Jairon who was 1-year old and had just found out they were pregnant with Ethan. It was a great time because we all knew that the wonderful family time that we'd been having for the last two years would soon end as many of us would be moving away from Portland. So it was me, my husband & Emi, my brother, his wife and Jairon, my sister and my youngest brother and my parents.
This year it will be a different story from the quiet Christmas of 2000. Now there are 10 grandchildren, my Natsuki being the latest. My sister has married and has two children, my brother and his wife now have four and we have four. I do feel bad for my youngest brother Joel because this Christmas is basically about the grandchildren and he hasn't made any yet. But he gets to be "Joel the Magnificent" and my kids think he's the coolest and they're looking forward to throwing snowballs at him!
My mom has planned a Fantasy Christmas complete with ice skating and Christmas dinner at a fancy hotel. Our whole family hasn't been together since my sister was married in June 2004 so we're planning a family picture which should be interesting. I have a hard time getting my four girls to face the same direction and smile for any picture-taking session so it'll be interesting to try to get 10 kids to do the same. But we're up for the challenge since we don't get many chances at a whole family picture.
I love my family and I can't wait to hug everyone.