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Although I’m happy living here in the land of sunshine, there are times I want to go home.  North. Where my lifelong friends are.  Where my life used to be.  Too bad it’s true when they say you can’t go home again.  I have no home there anymore and that makes me a little sad.  I have new friends here and a new life, but honestly? I have periods where I miss my old life.  The one where my loved ones were alive and healthy.  The one where we were all together for the holidays and it was noisy, crowded,  full of laughter and jam packed with love.  I find myself having a tough time feeling the magic of Christmas.  Sand is not snow, the trees are palm instead of pine, and Jack Frost is definitely not nipping noses.  That stinging sensation is called sunburn.

Despite the touch of melancholy, I know I’m extremely lucky.  I’m blessed with the greatest husband, two of my three siblings live close enough that we can visit often and do, and friends who, for one reason or another, are here missing their loved ones too.  So on Christmas day we’ll gather ’round the table laden with food made with loving hands, raise our glass, and toast to new traditions.  It’ll be noisy, crowded, full of laughter and jam packed with love. The tree won’t be real but the joy it provides will be.

The first time I came here during the holidays, I saw a sign that I thought was oh so wrong, but now I get it.  It said,

“Yule, y’all”

Wherever you are, “May your days be merry and bright, and may all your Christmases be white.”