Sunday, December 20, 2009

Home for the Holidays?

Whether you are heading back to your home country for the Christmas period or spending the festive season in your 'host' country, this time of year can bring a range of emotions with it. If you are spending the period without your closest family (especially for the first time) because you live overseas, it can make a joyous time of year a difficult one.

I have tried over the years to incorporate both my own Christmas traditions and Dutch elements of the celebration - in short, to make the best of both worlds. Inevitably, this means alternating where we spend Christmas - one year in England and the next here in the Netherlands.

Last year we broke with that and spent Christmas in Disneyland Paris. Combining new and old traditions and rituals can help you adapt to the festive season as an expat - the fact is that things are different at Christmas time once you leave your home country for a life overseas but it doesn't mean it has to be less fun.

To feel such conflicting emotions is quite normal as an expat and there are ways to cope. For a host of tips and advice on this topic check out Debby Poort's new Expats in (E)motion blog - it is packed with helpful words for this time of year.

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