For the past week, we were in NC visiting my family. My brother in law's beloved Papa passed away and we went down to support him and his beautiful family. We aren't related to his family (obviously, because that would be gross!) but they are like family to us. Whenever I'm home for a visit, no matter how short, his Dad brings me my favorite cream puffs from a local bakery. His parents always invite our family over for family dinners and the only fault I find with them is their loyalty to Duke basketball. As an avid Tarheel, it's almost unforgivable but their sweet hearts make up for their lack of taste in basketball.
Big Daddy had a trip for work so the kids and I packed and headed south. Packing and leaving at the same time as Big Daddy made it less painful for him to take his first post deployment trip without us. Amazing how God's timing works. I was pretty revved up about it and once my focus was shifted, no panic attack came as a result of his leaving.
We had an awesome week with my family, despite our reasons for traveling there. It's so nice to have more than a weekend to spend in the place that I have always known as home and it doesn't happen often so I relished it this time.
Isn't it funny how time and age changes your perspective? As a kid in high school, I couldn't wait to get out of there and explore the world beyond our smallish town. As an adult who has done plenty of exploring, I love going back. I have a nephew now to go along with my siblings and parents. Let me tell you how this changes things. I used to balk at people who said they loved their nieces and nephews like they were their own. I get it now. I love spending time with that child and he makes me laugh constantly! I'd sneak him home in my suitcase if I could get away with it. I've tried and my Sister won't let me much further than the driveway. Maybe once her next baby is born in June, she won't notice as quickly and I'll get further.
As much as I loved being back "home" in NC, I'm thankful to be Home now. There's so much to be said for sleeping in your own bed with your husband sleeping soundly beside of you and your kids in their own beds. It sure beats having him sleep states away while you curl up with two kids who move, chat and drool all through the night. Although, that was kind of fun too.