Next Time, Stay Home!

For all the folks who went to visit family for the holidays, and are now snow-bound in some airport, trying desperately to return home, (I’m talking to you, Clare and Jill!) here’s a solution for the future. Save yourself some trouble and–


Yes I know. This is the time of year when we all want to be with family, and are willing to travel thousands of miles to spend a few days catching up with loved ones. Big deal. Look what it’s gotten you. A whole mess of aggravation. Because if you ask me, with the weather getting more and more unpredictable each year, said loved ones might as well be living in Antarctica. Because that’s how freezing cold it is wherever they are. Brutally cold.

Photo taken by Carmen Davis.

Photo taken by Carmen Davis.

If you stay home, on the other hand, you don’t have to cope with the madness of traveler’s on the road, in the train and in the air. No airport security on your horizon! No having to wait on long lines to take off your shoes, your belt, your jacket, your scarf, etc.  Unless, of course, you’re taking them off because you’re planning to get cozy in front of the TV; then, by all means.

Staying home means time to bake cookies, catch up on your favorite TV shows, do some leisurely shopping online, and get lost in a good book with no interruptions from Aunt Agatha, who you know wants to talk about her sciatica.

Plus, think of all the money you’ll save by not booking that flight to the hinterlands! Now, maybe you’ll be able to buy everything in your Amazon shopping cart.

Nowadays, you don’t need to do all that crazy traveling to spend quality time with the relatives. Not when we have Skype and FaceTime.  And don’t forget, you can always plan a reunion via Facebook. Or maybe host a twitter party for all the rels! I bet they’d like that.  After all, isn’t it time Uncle Charlie and Cousin Betty set up an account, anyway?

How about this? Instead of opening the presents around the tree, open them via conference call. Mom and Dad are sure to have more fun trying to imagine the thrill on your face when you open your gift to find practically the same set of pajamas they’ve been giving you every year.

Besides, if the relatives really wanted to see you, they’d fly out to visit you. Chances are you live in a much warmer climate than they do. After all, they raised you to have sense!


Photo by Associated Press.

So, let them deal with trying to get back to their snowbound homes. Let them slip on the ice as they load their suitcases into their cars, and freeze their tuchas (That’s Yiddish for “posterior,” in case you’re wondering) in the process.  You’ll be content and secure knowing you’re warm and comfy in front of a roaring fire, with not a care in the world.

And if you still feel the need to visit the parental units, may I suggest going in the spring or summer, when the weather is much more, ahem, reasonable? Just a thought.

Incidentally, there’s a caveat to this solution: None of this applies to my daughter (So Sarah, if you’re reading this, don’t even think about it!). I expect her home every year for the holidays, and I, of course, will stop at nothing to visit her in her arctic, blustery home in the Midwest. Weather permitting, that is. 😉

And that’s my two cents!

What’s yours?

34 thoughts on “Next Time, Stay Home!

  1. None of it would apply to my kids either (if and when they fly the coop!)!! both my husband and I have the week off between Christmas and New Year’s but we’ve learned to save our travel until the 26th or 27th and return the 30th. For the past 15 years or so, I have organized a group conference call with my family though … wherever they all may be. In the early days it started with an operator-assisted long-distance conference call but has of course evolved to group Skype. Despite wishing to be with all my kinfolk, this remains the highlight of my Christmas. I sure hope my kids keep up the tradition 🙂

  2. Well, two cents is better than no cents/sense. I’m not visiting anybody. The tele suits me real fine. Plus, I wound up stuck, I might likely get perturbed at the folk I went to see, on account of them giving me inaccurate weather information. Sure will be glad for something close to warm. Takes my southern bones awhile to warm up after coming in from the cold.

    • Wow, that’s great, Kim. For once I would like to know what it feels like to have family nearby. I’ve never had it, not since I left home after high school. And it doesn’t seem in the cards. Sigh.

  3. Hahaha, this is too funny! And yes, even though my flight was canceled and I barely got out of Virginia 2 1/2 days after that, and I came home with a nagging cold… and a refrigerator full of rotting food… it was a much needed visit with my family and my once-a-year chance to see snow on the Blue Ridge Mountains and in the Shenandoah Valley which is absolutely stunning! Very happy to be back in sunny San Diego though 🙂

    • Two words for you, Clare: Never Again!

      Next year, send your parental units a postcard or invite them here. In other words, stay put! And know that I say this as a public service and of course, as always, you should take everything I say seriously and with a grain of salt. 😉

  4. You had me in stitches Monica. We do have civilized weather here don’t we? We do Christmas vacation every two yrs with my in-laws. We have all voted on warm weather vacations since they all live on the East Coast or Mid-West, hence our trip to Costa Rica. They do not want to deal with delays, or blustery cold days. I refuse to go colder than Northern California. Our trip was cut short, but we had a lovely time and a perfectly tropical Christmas dinner talking about my mother in-law who was a fantastic lady. It is what she would have wanted – having her entire clan together.
    Er, now as for your daughter – she has to come home. No exceptions there 🙂

  5. We usually do the traveling from the frozen Midwest to the sunny South over the holidays, Monica. But we try to time it when the weather is more, ahem, reasonable (read: no ice, snow, or named winter storms!) And ever since I’ve been working for myself, I’ve been able to pretty much travel at will (one advantage of being in a tech field and able to do what I do from anywhere!) That said, I saw on TV the long lines at the airports, the snowed-in passengers sleeping along the concourses, and the swirling snowflakes outside — don’t think I want to go anywhere or see anybody that bad. Except Domer, of course, and he knows I won’t travel to The Land of the North at this time of year, ha!

    • It’s funny how both our kids ended up in colder climates than they grew up in. The weather in the Midwest and east coast is awful. I hear parts of the South got hit pretty hard too. I’m staying put. How lucky you are that you have such flexibility in your schedule. How nice, too!

  6. Sounds like a plan to me! We were definitely homebound this holiday. So glad to not have to travel back anywhere…. so refreshing after all these years. Love the fam but they certainly understand the occasional need to be/stay home.

    • Yep, I’m with you. Though this year I did travel to the Midwest at Thanksgiving. But the way I see it, Thanksgiving is in the fall and technically, you’re less likely to get snowed in that time of year. Oh what a difference a month makes!

  7. Well written! Very funny too. I totally agree with this entry. Then again. I do live in Australia and for now, we’re blessed with lots of sunshine.

    Anyone reading this. Please consider visiting your relatives off peak season, it’s cheaper and less cumbersome.

    Smiling Kangaroo!


  8. Totally made me laugh, Monica! I was one of the lucky ones this week, only three hours delayed. I know it could have been awful, but I just said a prayer out to all those whose flights were canceled and standing in long lines and thanked my lucky stars my plane was there and I could leave that crowded airport behind. Why didn’t they cancel flights before people showed up, I wondered? Duh! They could just text us! That airline’s cra’y!

    • Jodi, it is a miracle and a wonder that you managed to get home. A three hour delay is nothing. I know one person that had a 48 hour delay and another who is still waiting to get home. Last I heard, she won’t make it back here until Wednesday!

  9. You forgot to mention the germs in the airport! I catch a cold or the flu almost every time I travel to the frozen Midwest. That definitely makes me want to stay home. Maybe next year I’ll convince the family to visit me instead.

  10. I must admit I think the best part of going away is coming home again.
    Never been a great visitor to be honest I like my own home too much.
    It’s cold here at the moment but at least it’s above freezing I am pleased to say.

  11. Ha, ha! That’s exactly how we felt and why we decided to stay in Ecuador for the holidays. And, by all means, folks should visit us if anyone is to visit anyone. The weather here is much more, dare I say, civilized? But, then again, I ‘m sure my mother probably feels the way you do. Hope you’re have a warm weekend, Monica. Surely the temperatures are awesome in southern California.

    Hugs from Ecuador,

  12. Yes, daughter must come home for the holidays.

    How many times have SIL’s parents tried driving from CA and had to turn around…yes, turn around…and I don’t mean a U-turn. They have…for real…had to turn around and return home at points as far east as NM.

    fyi “Aunt Agatha, who you know wants to talk about her sciatica.” another example of why your writing is so delicious.

    • Turn around once the trip has started? Yikes. Roads must’ve been really bad! Georgette, I’m so glad you caught that line. It was a little hidden nugget designed to give a chuckle, to anyone willing to take the time to really hear it, if you will. And you totally got it! 🙂

  13. My solution to holiday travel is to always leave extra time (like DAYS) on either end. It’s easier not to get your undies in a bundle if when you look outside the window and it’s a blizzard you can shrug your shoulders and say “We’ll just stay another day.” It also helps if you holiday celebrations aren’t the same day as everyone else’s So have Christmas at home and then travel and celebrate with the family on one of those “in between” days. I’ve seen my daughter quite a bit this holiday season – after all she is in town. Our gift exchange is scheduled for next week. Not as much excitement, but a lot less stress.

    • Good solution. I also like padding the trip so I’ve been known to start my holiday around December 15th and stay until Three Kings Day. Now that’s a great way to avoid the airport crowds!

Comments are closed.