Most of my family — my mother, sister, brothers, oldest daughter, and only niece — live thousands of miles away, and while I hate living so far away, we do the best we can to stay close. I can’t be there for every tae kwon do belt my niece earns, but I can stay in the loop, and help them all celebrate even the smallest of victories and occasions. Here are 7 ways to stay close across the miles…
Photo Credit: Ryan Brenizer
More than anything else, I keep updated on what’s happening with my far-away friends and family with Facebook. Their status updates give me an every-day feel for their lives, and their photos let me see, rather than just read, what everything is like. And, since it’s Facebook, it’s free!
I’m with the same cell phone carrier as all of my family in Washington, so when we talk, even though it’s long-distance, it’s free, and it doesn’t even use any of our monthly minutes. If you have friends and family far away, look into which cell phone companies you can use, to see if there’s a way you can all talk whenever you want for free.
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I love getting cards, letters, and even postcards from my out-of-state friends and family. There’s something wonderful about getting mail that’s not a bill… or another credit card offer…
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My brother loves a particular Michigan-only soda (Faygo Rock & Rye), so every once in a while, I’ll ship him a case. I also love sending my niece and my daughter little odds and ends when I find them… it makes me feel involved, and it lets them all know I’m thinking of them, even when it’s not a holiday, birthday, or other special occasion.
Photo Credit: JennKstep
I save all of my change in a big glass jar with a label on it that says “Washington.” It’s my visit fund, and as the jar gets fuller and heavier, I get excited because I know I’m that much closer to having the money for another plane ticket, another visit.
Photo Credit: Wallace & Sanders
When you’re far away, it’s important to remember and note special occasions, like birthday and such, but it’s also important to remember smaller dates, like tae kwon do achievements, swim meets, football games, dances, report cards… all of the little events that make life for little kids. Send a note, a card, a Facebook or text message to let your loved one know you’re thinking of them…
This is probably my favorite thing, the way I remember my friends and family when we’re apart — photos of us together. When you are together, make sure to get lots of gorgeous snaps, and keep them close when you get home. I have so many framed photos of my family all around me at home… it helps me feel closer to them.
Those are my favorite ways to feel like I’m not on the other side of the Continental Divide — sometimes I feel like I’m just across town. Of course, nothing is as good as actually being there, but in between visits, this is how we stay close. Do you have friends and family far away? How do you stay close? Please let me know!
Top Photo Credit: *Peanut (Lauren)
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