Claiming adulthood: a stake in the ground

This is my first post in a couple weeks because of the holiday. We had a fair amount of chaos and also just laying around gasping for air, recovering. While other bloggers have written about reflecting on 2008 and planning for 2009, I think I already spent most of 2008 doing some pretty heavy reflection and planning. I fully expect 2009 to be similar, though hopefully less intense.

We didn't travel for the holidays this year. In the past, as we were the couple with no kids living far from our families, we've always been the ones to drive. One year we visited five households in three states in two days. Now I love my family, but that was exhausting. To be honest, we got sick of it. It's hard on us and hard on our dogs. We can kennel them--which is insanely expensive and requires booking way in advance--or drive with them in the back seat. Did I mention one of the dogs throws up every time he gets in the car, even if we drug him? Yeah, that's an issue.

We're forty(ish) years old. We're adults now. We've lived in Cleveland for over two years, and hardly any of our relatives have seen our house. So this year we pounded a stake in the ground and said this is our home: if you want to see us, come visit. Stay the weekend, we've got room.

I feel bad about those of our relatives who can't travel, but we have to make a stand. I'm not trying to be spiteful, I'm looking forwards: we have to build a life here.