Familiar Faces

VIDEOS (Clockwise starting at top left):
#1 The stork arrived just in time to deliver the latest addition to my extended family back in NYC.
#2 My little sister serenades me with my jam, “Hot Cross Buns,” a la violin.
#3 A neverending toast with my adoptive Puerto Rican family back in NYC, who usually hosts Christmas. It isn’t Christmas unless there’s coquito and bachata.
#4 Thanksgiving-day table conversation with the youngest munchkins in the family.

There’s something about the holiday season that really makes a girl miss home.

I’m thankful for the familiar faces in these videos as well as the new, unfamiliar faces I’ve come across in the second half of this year, including that of my latest nephew (pictured above).

He’s barely a week old and already melting hearts everywhere. I can’t wait to meet him in person during my next trip back north and wish nothing but the best for his parents.

Admittedly, this will be my very first Christmas away from home and on the job. I’ve been extremely fortunate to have been able to make it home for every holiday season thus far while also avoiding the work clock (a double rarity in the news biz).

I stashed a bunch of presents for my little sisters and some family in an undisclosed location to be revealed on Christmas morning.

Tomorrow, I will be covering a local event at a soup kitchen and then visting a friend’s house for a traditional, southern Christmas supper–starting in the afternoon, of course.

I realize how lucky I am to have been invited to someone’s home on a day that is usually relegated to family and close friends. I believe there is something concrete to the southern hospitality principle after all.

South or not, what I love the most about any holiday season is the way it can bring people together, if only for a day or even just a few hours.

What are you thankful for this holiday season?