Monday, December 15, 2008

Some Pleasant Surprises

Nothing makes me feel more homesick than being in Japan for Christmas. I was fortunate enough to go home and celebrate with my family the first year I moved out here, but now I am getting ready to spend my third consecutive Christmas in Japan, and wish it wasn't so. We actually got the time away from work but the plane tickets were just so expensive, it would have put us back a couple months and Abe's season will be done in about three months anyway, so we had to make a choice.

In Japan, Abe and I usually put out our little Christmas tree that I bought when I taught on the army base, but this year, in our cramped apartment, I just didn't feel like taking it out. I thought about it, but have been busy, and well...yea. But something happened this week that served as a much-welcomed consolation...and it came in the form of two (yup....2!) brown packages. From my mommy and daddy. They decided since we couldn't go to them, they would bring a little Cali Christmas to us. I promised my mom I wouldn't open the boxes, but she remembered there were some perishables in there so I was allowed to open a box, but the gifts were wrapped, so I'm not cheating.

And then, another surprise came today. After a long day of teaching, I drove home down our dark little alley-street and saw twinkling lights flashing from behind our linen curtains. Apparently Abe spent a little part of his day off putting the tree out and putting up the decorations. Awwwww. It's almost Christmas now! :)





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We put the wrapped presents under the tree and even left the Wheat Thins (thank you a hundred time for those Mom!) under there so they can't be consumed until Christmas. Yay.

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I realize that the point is not to be excited about the presents. I mean, I'm not 10 anymore. But feeling even a hint of what it's like to go home...it makes being abroad a little bit more bearable.

9 comments:

Erin said...

This is so sweet! Yay for a sweet husband and sweet parents!

Julie Ann said...

Thank you. I hope you and your family are having fun celebrating the holidays. It must be fun with kids!

Maria said...

That's great. I think we all do it-- find a way to bring a bit of home to us. I am only 800 miles from my family, and I still do it. hugs, and Merry Christmas!

Julie Ann said...

I don't know if it matters...800 miles, or 8,000 miles away from your family, it's still hard to be away at these times of year.
hope you and your family have a great holiday season as well!

Tina Lou said...

Abe is awesome! Sweet post. Merry Christmas from California! btw, I found you through Justin & Mary's blog. :)

Julie Ann said...

thank you! merry christmas to you too! :)
and i'm so happy you found me!

beth said...

Hi Julie Ann - Thanks so much for your comments on my blog! Your work is also wonderful! I'm laughing at the Wheat Thins under your tree...I totally understand! I hope you had a wonderful Christmas in Japan.
-Beth

Julie Ann said...

Hi Beth,
Yes, our mouths were watering for days looking at those Wheat Thins under the tree. We finished the box before Christmas day was over.

Happy Holidays to you!

ohana photographers-david and kimi said...

i love wheat thins! now i don't feel so goofy putting food under the tree too!! we had coke zero and cookies! ok, so not as healthy as wheat thins, but still good :) hope santa was good to you and your fam! here's to kickin 09' in the bleepity bleep ;)