Monday, November 15, 2010

Holiday Habits

Last week's Friday Forum topic got me thinking about my plans for the upcoming holidays. My preference tends toward a simple, classic version of the year-end festivities. When I think about Christmas, in particular, I think about spending time with my family. It evokes images of traveling home and sleeping in my childhood bed, putting up a tree in the living room, getting to drive and ride in the car a lot (a relative rarity for an NYC-dweller), and cooking in my mom's enormous (again, relative to NYC) kitchen.

I've always known there would come a point when my holiday traditions would begin to evolve. They've already evolved somewhat. For several years in the past, instead of traveling home to the Midwest, I've hosted Thanksgiving in my own apartment, for family and friends. I managed this transition rather seamlessly. Sometimes it's nice not to travel and, for better or worse, I get the leftovers all to myself.

The prospect of changing Christmas plans, however, seems a bit more daunting. I count myself very lucky that no life events have disrupted my Yuletide traditions up until now. Every December for a decade I've wondered if this would be the year, but it turns out that it's going to be 2010 that finally breaks a lifelong tradition: I won't be going home for Christmas.

I tell myself that the element of being with family and friends is the most important thing, and I'm still going to get to do that. I'll buy a tree and decorations, heat hot chocolate, and savor the festive, wintry vibe of the city. Still, I can't help but wonder if it'll feel like the same holiday this year.

I'll let you know on the flip side!

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