The holidays! We’re a military family with kids and grandkids all over the country. (My husband is retired Army and I’m a veteran. We met while both serving in the Army 42 years ago.) Most parents are excited when their kids are in the same city. My husband and I are thrilled when all of our kids are on the same continent!
It’s hard to remain a close family when 1 son, his husband, ex-wife and their 4 kids live on the West Coast, 2 sons live on the East Coast and 1 lives about 3 hours away. We came up with a solution. When the boys started moving out we began drawing names to buy gifts for each other for Christmas. As each married, his spouse was added to the list. That way we are still a big family. It also helps that our eldest created a yahoo group with everyone’s birthday and anniversaries. We’ve gone from a family of 6 to a family of 21.
About 2 years ago the boys/men decided they didn’t need presents from their brothers and spouses. Now we draw names for the grandkids/nieces/nephews. Each year a child gets a present from an uncle or aunt they may not have ever met. It’s not perfect. I really wish we were all together for the holidays. But, in the military tradition we are making the best of the situation.