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One last night in Brevard.

The past week has been filled with rubbermaid bins, mixed emotions, runs to Goodwill, Christmas parties, packing, stress, procrastination, and a few emotional breakdowns.

How is it almost the middle of December? How is Christmas in two weeks? How is it that I leave North Carolina tomorrow?

I was able to spend a wonderful last few weeks with my friends and family here. We shared so many laughs and created moments that I won’t soon forget. These friends have stuck by me through the unexpected twists and turns of this past year – through the moves, travels, and times at home, at the end of the day I can count on a vicious game of spades and a little table talk to remind me where home is.

It’s hard thinking about all that will change in the year that I’m gone. I know I won’t be coming back the same person, but it’s just strange to think about where everyone could be this time next year. I can’t wait to sit down for coffee with these people a year from now and talk reminisce about how quickly the year went and all that we accomplished. It’s hard not to linger on the things that I’ll miss, but instead I am trying to look forward to all that God has in store for us throughout the coming year. Who knows where our journey will take us. I just pray that He leads and we willingly follow.

While it’s sad thinking about goodbyes and the final few hugs, I know that this ending season brings forth the opportunity for new things, new adventures, and new relationships. I pray that these relationships not only stay in tact through the next year, but that they are strengthened by coming together in the midst of our different journeys across the globe. North Carolina has changed my life. I wouldn’t be on this next journey without the crazy leap of faith that was moving here. I love these folks with my whole heart.

I’ll miss you sweet North Carolina. As one chapter starts, another closes – let’s keep writing.

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i’ll be home for christmas

Christmas in North Carolina.

Take away the snow, add some people and three Batman masks, and it felt just like home.

No one could ask for a better first Christmas away from “home”.

This year I gained a second “home”. I joined another family. I multiplied my sibling count by about eight. This year has been good for the soul.

I cannot believe that in just four days, it will be a year since my first long visit to North Carolina. It was just about a year ago that this place burrowed a nice little Brevard shaped hole in my heart. It took me just about ten days to realize that this place and these people were special. When I left to head home at the end of that trip, I didn’t even have the slightest thought that moving down here would be a reality. I knew that I did not want to leave that January day, but my brain had never seriously contemplated the reality of permanently moving just four short months later.

North Carolina has truly changed my life. I’ve learned more than I ever thought I could in such a short time. I’ve grown more in eight months than I had in the three years prior. I’ve been able to build such genuine relationships that have made of an impact in my life than those individuals will ever know.

Kitchener laid the foundation. Brevard built up from there. I am so thankful for all of the relationships I’ve had over the past twenty-two years. I would not be the person I am today without all the people who have poured into my life.

This Christmas I have come to realize what an amazing support system I have in my life. Thank you family. Thank you friends. Merry Christmas to you all!