Christmas and Coming Home

by Kate

This Christmas I am coming home.


The past two years we have spent Christmas with our in-laws, who are warm and gracious and welcoming- as is their adopted home state of Texas. Christmas with Casey’s family is calm and quiet and luxuriously restful….. but…….

I missed the blizzards and the beer and my big strong brothers.

I missed the heat of the wood stove and the contemptuous commentary of my little brothers.

I very much missed seeing my little sisters grow more beautiful every year.

I miss my cousins, and sledding down steep driftless hills.

And I miss being surrounded by friends and family.

I miss the church that is just across the country road from our big white farmhouse.

And the view from the choirloft.

I know that my mother has been desperately missing Colleen’s accompaniment on the piano since she left for college.

I have cried in church during the carols every Christmas far from home, missing the other two members of the alto section. Oh Julia Ugo and Mary Weber, I am so excited to sight read complex harmonies and belt them out badly with you between fits of giggling.

And so, this Christmas, I am coming home.

29 thoughts on “Christmas and Coming Home

  1. Lydia

    Beautiful! Christmas with your family looks similar to mine. A benefit of living close to my parents is that we’ve never missed Christmas with them, but are still able to travel right after Christmas to see my husband’s family. His is similar to yours – quietly restful. Ours is loud, raucous, warm, and sometimes messy. I love them both. Merry Christmas Kate!

  2. Antigone's Clamor

    What wonderful pictures! Was that last one from a movie? It looked vaguely familiar, but it might have been my mind playing tricks on me.

    Little brothers are devilish, but too much fun! I miss their pestering so much when I’m gone. I hope you have a wonderful, perfect Christmas with your family.

  3. Minnesota Prairie Roots

    No matter where you live or how long you’re away, there is truly nothing like “home,” the place of your childhood. So happy you can return home to Wisconsin.

    That first image and that last image are so compelling. Please do explain that last photo.

    How long will you be home?

  4. sweetridgesisters Post author

    I will be home for a week, and part of Christmas day. I’m very excited. I’m leaving my husband behind, because he’s teaching all week, but bringing Olympia of course. The last picture looks very mysterious, but it is really just a combination of a blizzard, a little brother, the family dog, and a great cloak that I accidentally inherited from a community theater production. And a stick. And a lot of time reading books and being homeschooled. -kate

  5. An Older Woman

    The best part of Christmas is having a home. How lucky are you? How lucky am I? So many people now aren’t so lucky. Now that there is just the two of us, I feel I want to go out in the street and find people and bring them in to play the parts – my smelly brother who’s trying to see the TV, my fat sisters who were fighting about anything and everything, my mother who seemed to relish it all, in a stuporous state of acceptance of the way things are and have always been. Ours was a loud house, full of beer and fights, followed by hysterical laughter. Now everyone is too tired. All they do is eat and leave to see old friends in the area. We’re staying put and may go to the Sugar Bowl. Things change when you get old. Enjoy your life now. Appreciate everything. And have a safe and happy holiday. Patsye p.s. Who is the little angel in the window of picture number one?

  6. theycallthewind

    This post is so beautiful in its simplicity and heartfelt-ness! I think my Christmas Spirit-o-meter just went up a notch.
    I always wished for sisters but got two little brothers instead (who I love dearly) but always wondered what it would be like!
    Thanks for checking out my post!
    All the best,

  7. Pingback: We’ll All Be Home For Christmas « sweetridgesisters

  8. happykidshappymom

    What a beautiful piece. I love how you opened with the photo of the little girl peeking through the curtains (your daughter?). And closed with the shepherd man trudging through the snow (your brother?). Whoever was in those pictures, they represented your heart. You as a little girl excited, then as a grown woman wandering home. Wonderfully presented.

    And this line made me tear up: “I very much missed seeing my little sisters grow more beautiful every year.”

    Glad you found my blog, and glad to have found yours!

  9. Pingback: Christmas in the Clamor and the Chaos « sweetridgesisters

  10. ~ Bruce

    Wonderful, Kate! I am just catching up on my reading as I’ve been away, so please forgive the lateness of this comment. I love the warmth of both your words and photos. I hope it was a wonderful Christmas for you and your family.

  11. Raphael

    i’m writing a paper next to Raph, right now. that man. We eat cup noodles together at the PDK. yeah, he’s getting more than me done. yeah, he’s on his second line. let me tell you what he’s writing
    “In the moviegoer, Walker Perry Provides a portrait of a purposeless man. The purposeless man is Jack Binx, Bolling a successful stock broker on the eve of his thirteenth birthday”

      1. sweetridgesisters Post author

        Well, I am the oldest Slattery and my husband is a schoolteacher and HE is putting off writing a test by watching the Matrix, so I have lots of time to respond. Tell Raph… wait…. do you guys actually have the same name? That is so weird.

      2. Raphael B

        haha matrix, nice. yeah same name. Raph’s beating me, he finished a whole page before he left.. what did you want me to tell him?

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