My mom is coming to visit and I am so excited. It got me to thinking about some of the things I miss, having my mom and extended family on another continent. My mom comes from a big family and I always felt pretty close to my aunts and uncles but living here in Germany makes it hard to stay caught up and connected. Plus I miss out on a lot of fun interactions because when we do come to visit we are trying desperately to pack tons of things into just a few weeks of time.
I recently bought a sewing machine for a great price. I had one before in my teens but I only used it a few times until the needle broke and then I never touched it again. So now I have one again and don't even know how to thread it. This is the perfect example of one of those times where I wish I lived closer to my side of the family. One of my aunts is great at sewing and lots of different crafty type things and I would love to just bring my sewing machine with and have her show me the basics, and just hang out with her- she could probably even help move on from the sewing a pillow stage to actually doing something elaborate like a table runner ;) but since it will be about 4 months until I am back in my home state and there is no way I would ever bring a sewing machine in my luggage I will probably end up watching youtube help videos and hoping I don't break the thing.
Or a few weeks ago went to an awesome jewelry store with friends here. It has tons of beads, leather, stones, etc and lots of pieces already made for inspiration or purchase but the cool part is that you can pick out everything and they lend you the supplies so that you can make a bracelet or a necklace or earrings. It was such a cool store and I know one of my aunts would have loved it. It would be great to go there with her and my mom and make a day of it but that just isn't possible.
These are the little things that all add up. It is hard sometimes to not be able to have more time to spend with people that you care so much about and it is definitely one of the biggest drawbacks of living abroad. However enjoying visits from family you love is a wonderful cure for homesickness and I am looking forward to a great visit from my mom.