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The Perfect Christmas Gift is…….

kathy-in-the-snowFriendship!

I know we all have friends but the definition of friendship has taken on a new meaning for us this year.

When you leave home and everything you know and move half way across the world to a country where you know 3 people, friendship takes on a whole new meaning.

Here are some of my definitions of the perfect Christmas gift:

Friends you have met on your travels and when you return to their city, they welcome you into their homes, they have you round for supper,  take in your kids again, they have breakfasts for you and invite all your friends. They feed you with the best food you have ever had and treat you like family.

Friends who you have never met before, they take in your whole family for 10 days when you first arrive in Florida, they take you out for meals, they feed you, pray with you and show you the sights of this new city, all without hesitation

Friends who invite you round to watch Christmas movies 3 or 4 times a week, again they feed and water you and ask for nothing in return, except for maybe the odd bottle of “297”!

Friends who take you out for meals (when your budget doesn’t stretch that far) and buy you a Christmas Ham that feeds the family for a couple of weeks!

Extended-Family who invite you in and love you like friends.

Friends you have only met on Skype who invite you to stay and treat you like Family, trekking you to the local wonders of nature and including you in the family ritual of a can of Pop with the evening News.

Friends you meet that treat you like you have been friends for years. They put on farewell parties for you and genuinely seem sad that you are leaving. They have your kids for sleepovers (and trust you enough to let their kids stay with you) and don’t mind the funny accent.

Friends who introduce you to American traditions and include you in theirs like one of the family.

Friends who drag your kids face first through the snow and ice behind their ATV.

And my favourite definition of the Perfect Christmas gift:

Friends you have known for only a couple of months, (earlier in the year); 

  • who invite you back to their house for Christmas for 2 whole weeks
  • they pick you up from the Airport at 11.30 at night in the freezing snow
  • they throw Christmas parties for you
  • they feed you
  • they build snowmen with you
  • they take you out and show you all the Christmas Lights and decorations
  • they feed you
  • they treat your kids like their own
  • they take you round all your old haunts so you can reminisce
  • they feed you
  • they spoil you rotten with lots of treats
  • they put up with all of Phil’s terrible habits
  • they feed you
  • they make you feel so comfortable in their home sometimes you forget to use your manners
  • they make Christmas plans that revolve around you
  • they accept you as you are
  • and most importantly…..  they genuinely make you feel like part of their family

This gift of friendship I have been given is one that I can carry home with me, doesn’t take up any room in the suitcase and something I am keen to return, but more than that, it’s the kind of gift that I can pass on to others without losing what I have been given.

So my Christmas wish for everyone this year is not one of beautifully wrapped presents under the tree (don’t get me wrong, I love those too!) but one of true friendship that will out last any new pair of socks!

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