Christmas is a tough time of year for me.  Since my parents passed in 2015, holidays have not been the same; Christmas is especially tough.  Although I do see my brothers and their families, I am still left feeling empty.  This year, I needed Christmas to be different.

What I really wanted this year was time with my husband and my boys – together.  The teens are always coming and going – either to school, to work, to sports, to spend time with friends – and it is hard to get the four of us together.  So while I use to question why people go away over Christmas, the idea of kidnapping my family for a few days, without any distractions to pull us apart, appealed to me more and more.

I also wanted to get my kids away from the consumer mentality that has become embedded in Canadian Christmases.  At the risk of sounding like Scrooge, I was tired of feeling the need to buy gifts just because it is Christmas, I worried about producing the expected grand turkey dinner and I really don’t enjoy decorating my house for a few weeks.   What I needed was to ground down, to spend time with my husband and kids and experience new things.   So we gifted ourselves a winter getaway.

Ironically, as much as we don’t like the cold, we decided to embrace Canadian winter and head to Mont Tremblant, Quebec.  My youngest could snowboard, my oldest could learn to ski and we could find many more ways to keep active and play outdoors.  This year, Christmas was about being together – being busy, tired and together.

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