8 Winter Activities I Look Forward To Coming Home To

8 Winter Activities I Look Forward To Coming Home To

Finals are over, now it's time to celebrate (the season).

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Coming home (even though it's only a solid 20 minutes) to Fishers gives me absolute joy. Most of my excitement stems from the fact that I can finally relax and enjoy the holiday season. My family has many Christmas traditions that we love to do together. Some of them have lasted since before I can remember, others are relatively new.

1. Yuletide

http://youarecurrent.com/2015/11/24/santa-singing-and-more-at-the-indianapolis-symphony-orchestras-yuletide-celebration/

The Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra's annual Yuletide event is something that my family goes to every year downtown at the circle. It is a huge show full of singing, dancing, and holiday music. I can't imagine a holiday season passing without attending this special event. The dancing Santas (pictured) are my favorite. They are all tap dancers.

2. Baking Cookies/Treats

https://www.pexels.com/photo/baking-christmas-cookies-cookie-delicious-264826/

With my mom being an excellent baker, you can always expect our house to be full of sugar and flour. My mom, sister, and I love to bake cookies. It is a tradition that we have always done together, and I look forward to the holiday cookies that I usually have only once a year.

3. Carmel Christmas Market

https://indywithkids.com/carmel-ice-skating-rink-christkindlmarkt-center-green/

Referred to as the "Christmas Christkindlmarkt", Carmel has a small area with German foods, hot chocolate, various vendors, and an ice-skating rink. A relatively new tradition in our family, I can't wait to walk around and hopefully get to ice skate this year (the line is always so long!).

4. Christmas Shopping

https://www.pexels.com/photo/paper-bags-near-wall-749353/

I love going out with my mom to shop for the holidays. There is no better feeling than giving, and the best part of the holidays is that everyone is in the "giving" mood.

5. Holiday Feasts

https://www.pexels.com/photo/candle-celebration-champagne-christmas-260493/

I love when the family comes to our house for a home cooked meal made by my mom. She always decorates and makes sure that the tables are decorated according to the season. I aspire to do the same when I have my own home.

6. Christmas Lights

https://www.pexels.com/photo/assorted-color-string-lights-752484/

Sometimes you just need to get in the car and search for Christmas lights. I love driving through the Reynold's lights every year in Fishers.

7. White Elephant/Games

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Wgdt_ykRzc

The Saran Ball Game is a tradition my family started a couple years ago. I laugh so hard watching others do this game, and I truly think it is so fun (and it can be done cheap!). Each family member gets a certain number of seconds to unwrap the ball as fast as they can. The closer to the center, the better the prizes get.

Not only do I love this game, but also White Elephant. Some families call it different names but bringing a present anonymously and getting to "steal" presents makes it loads of fun!

8. Christmas Movies

https://www.pexels.com/photo/brown-beside-fireplace-near-brown-wicker-basket-688019/

My sister and I always settle for a night in with our pajamas and fireplace on. We'll watch several Christmas movies like "Eloise" and "Elf". It is something I look forward to, every year.

What traditions does your family do each year?

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To The Grandmothers Who Made Us The Women We Are Today

Sincerely, the loving granddaughters.
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The relationship between a grandmother and her granddaughter is something so uniquely special and something to be treasured forever.

Your grandma loves you like you are her own daughter and adores you no matter what. She is the first person you run to when you have a problem with your parents and she never fails to grace you with the most comforting advice.

She may be guilty of spoiling you rotten but still makes sure to stress the importance of being thankful and kind.

Your grandma has most likely lived through every obstacle that you are experiencing now as a young adult and always knows just exactly what to say.

She grew up in another generation where things were probably much harder for young women than they are today.

She is a walking example of perseverance, strength, and grace who you aim to be like someday.

Your grandma teaches you the lessons she had to learn the hard way because she does not want you to make the same mistakes she did when she was growing up.

Her hugs never fail to warm your heart, her smile never fails to make you smile, and her laugh never fails to brighten your day.

She inspires you to be the best version of yourself that you can be.

You only hope that one day you can be the mother and grandmother she was to you.

A piece of girl’s heart will forever belong to her grandma that no one could ever replace.

She is the matriarch of your family and is the glue that holds you all together.

Grandmothers play such an important role in helping their granddaughters to grow into strong, intelligent, kind women.

She teaches you how to love and how to forgive.

Without the unconditional love of your grandma, you would not be the woman you are today.

To all of the grandmothers out there, thank you for being you.

Sincerely,

the loving granddaughters

Cover Image Credit: Carlie Konuch

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45 Songs To Add To Your Memorial Day Playlist

Songs to truly remember what the holiday is for.

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I come from a family that would always go to the lake for Memorial Day and grill with friends and family. However, we always flew our flag and remembered why we celebrate Memorial Day. Both my granddads fought back when you didn't have a choice, back when young men died to protect this great country. To this day there are brave men and women dying to protect this great country and for you to be able to grill with your family. Here are 45 songs to add to your playlist.

1. ‘Letters from Home’ by John Michael Montgomery 

2. ‘Where Were You (When the World Stopped Turning)’ by Alan Jackson

3. ‘God Bless The USA’ by Lee Greenwood

4. ‘In Color’ by Jamey Johnson

5. ‘Something to Be Proud Of’ by Montgomery Gentry

6. ‘Old Army Hat’ by Billy Ray Cyrus

7. ‘One Hell Of An Amen’ by Brantley Gilbert

8. ‘Ragged Old Flag’ by Johnny Cash

9. ‘American Soldier’ by Toby Keith 

10. ‘God Bless America’ by Martina McBride 

11. ‘Some Gave All’ by Billy Ray Cyrus

12. ‘8th of November’ by Big & Rich

13. ‘Call A Marine’ by Toby Keith 

14. ‘Courtesy Of The Red, White, And Blue’ by Toby Keith 

15. ‘Song of the Patriot’ by Johnny Cash

16. ‘I Just Cane Back (From A War)’ by Darryl Worley

17. ‘I Stand For The Flag’ by Wes Cook Band

18. ‘Where The Stars And Stripes And The Eagle Fly’ by Aaron Tippin

19. ‘For You’ by Keith Urban

20. ‘Blood Brothers’ by Luke Bryan

21. ‘It’s America’ by Rodney Atkins

22. ‘Fallen Soldier’ by Nathan Fair

23. ‘Brothers’ by Dean Brody

24. ‘If I Don’t Make It Back’ by Tracy Lawrence

25. ‘Semper Fi’ by Trace Adkins

26. ‘Only in America’ by Brooks & Dunn

27. ‘Ships That Don’t Come In’ by Joe Diffie

28. ‘Have You Forgotten?’ By Darryl Worley

29. ‘Heroes Come from Small Towns’ by Rockie Lynne

30. ‘Arlington’ by Trace Adkins

31. ‘Riding With Private Malone’ by David Ball

32. ‘POW 369’ by Darryl Worley

33. ‘Red White & Blue’ by Lynyrd Skynyrd 

34. ‘We Fought Hard’ by Billy Ray Cyrus 

35. ‘A Soldier’s Memoir (PTSD Song)’ by Joe Bachman

36. ‘Boy in a Uniform’ by Rockie Lynne

37. ‘Nineteen’ by Billy Ray Cyrus

38. ‘This Ain’t No Rag, It’s A Flag’ by Charlie Daniels Band

39. ‘America Will Survive’ by Hank Williams, Jr.

40. ‘Til The Last Shot’s Fired’ by Trace Adkins

41. ‘If You’re Reading This’ by Tim McGraw 

42. ‘Survivor Guilt’ by Rise Against

43. ‘Hero Of War’ by Rise Against 

44. ‘Ballad of Balad’ by Toby Keith

45. ‘I Want You to Live’ by George Canyon


This year as you are gathering around the table about to chow down on a burger or hotdog remember the ones who have given the ultimate sacrifice to allow you the freedom to have a great time. Happy Memorial Day!

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