It hit me [Emily] a few weeks ago that what we call “The Holidays” is not just two special days of the year but an actual season. It’s two full months of parties, decorations, gifts, intentional time with family and friends and a genuine change in the atmosphere everywhere you go. In India, this season has simply not begun yet. The malls are not stocked with their Christmas decorations. We searched the local bazaar high and low to find a Christmas tree just days ago to no avail. There’s one nice grocery store in town that put up a few fake snow flakes but other than that everything is as it normally is.
I won’t lie to you – it’s hard. We’ve both missed getting excited about spending time with our families and will deeply miss them the day of Thanksgiving and Christmas. I wish the streets were full of red and green tinsel, snowmen and Santa Clauses (never thought I’d want to see Santa this bad!). And so we’re honest with ourselves (and with you) and then we do something about it!
So what have we done/will do to bring the holidays to India?
Many people say that a change to cooler temperatures is what sparks the holiday cheer in them. Well, India (northern India specifically) did not disappoint! Our little concrete home has officially turned into an icebox. We bundle up in the mornings and evenings while, during the day, we try to spend a lot of the day outside in the sun. I’ve been known to sit on the floor and follow the sun shining in through the windows of our living room.
As per our yearly tradition, we’ve been writing one thing we’re thankful for each day and hanging it up in our home. I should have also made it a tradition to keep all the papers from each year to see what was going on that year. This year there’s a definite them of making a home and eating comforting food!
Thanksgiving day was spent with some dear friends we’ve made here in Northland. There’s quite a few of us who go to school together (and then some extras). We had a yummy feast of turkey, ham and tons of other goodies! We were thankful to be with other Americans on our first Thanksgiving away from home.
The day after Thanksgiving we took an anniversary/Thanksgiving trip to see the Taj Mahal! Y’all…it was breathtaking! But I have to say, sitting in a Starbucks with my love sipping on yummy coffee out of a red, Christmas cup was a highlight for me! Regular, daily life with the man who stands by me through it all is the most romantic of it all!
We’re listening to lots of Christmas music! Have you all seen this adorable video going around Facebook? Seriously…perfection!
We’ve hung our stockings with care…or paperclips and tape. 🙂 Either way, they’re up ready to be filled with sweet treats we find for each other.
The minute Christmas trees hit the stores you better believe this white girl bought one for herself! We brought a box full of our favorite ornaments that we carefully hung on our beautiful little tree!
Christmas day we’ll be in Bangalore with many of our close friends over here. It only seems right to spend Christmas with them…our overseas family.
Merry “Holiday Season” everyone!