Thursday, December 18, 2014

5 Tips for Spending Christmas Abroad

Hi everyone,

Leah here. As many of you know, this year I am spending my holidays this year in Australia. It is my first Christmas ever away from home. (My mothers first Christmas in 25 years without me, as she so liked to remind me!)

Yes it’s a little sad, and the closer it gets to Christmas, the more those little homesick pangs come! (If I was at home I’d be doing this and this at home!)

However, there are a couple things I’m doing this year to really embrace being away from home during the holidays!

If you’re spending Christmas abroad please share your stories down below with me!

1.) Embrace the Difference

DO NOT spend your holidays picking apart everything that is different from home. Of course things are different, you're in a brand new place! I doubt you moved just to have things stay the same. . The differences can be as small as having apple pie instead of pumpkin, or as big as having a Christmas BBQ instead of a turkey dinner. Whatever it may be look at everything with a smile, and an open mind.

2.) Incorporate your own Traditions

So everything is super different abroad! Share some of your own Christmas traditions, whether its  with backpacking friends, or if you’re staying with a family like me, try and add in your own Christmas touch! Think about what really makes the holidays special for you and share it with the people around you. This can be anything from a holiday treat, favourite movie, or game. For example, every year my family does a Jack Horner Pie, and I made one for my host family.

3.) Connect with Home

Don’t try and NOT miss home. You’re going be a little homesick. Try and make it a little easier and plan some skype calls. My mother filmed my family putting up the Christmas tree and sent it to me. I found lots of fun Christmas cards and little souvenirs, so I made sure to send my family back an Australian Christmas package.

Even try and connect with home around you. Meet up with other expats,  take comfort in swapping stories from back home. Just searching facebooks groups, or couch surfers is a great way to connect with people. (Always remember to do it in a public setting!!)

I taped up all the Christmas cards I received and taped them up beside my bed to remind me of home.

4.) Take Ideas with Home

This tip goes hand in hand with the first tip. Once you really embrace your Christmas abroad you may really come to love some of these new traditions. Try and join in on as many of the new Christmas activities as you can. Your favourite ones you can take home with you, and make a truly wonderful and unique Christmas next year!

5.) Create memories

Try and many new things as you can! Takes lots of picture. Buy a special reminder. For me, I bought a special Christmas ordainment, that will always remind me of my Christmas in Australia.

I wish you all a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

Just remember, this is probably going to be your only Christmas EVER where you are right now! SO MAKE THE MOST OF IT!

If you'd like to see my Christmas in Australia Video click the picture below!

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