Christmas in Canada


Oh travel. How do I love thee? Let me count the ways………

1. Meeting new people, 2. Helping animals, 3. Raising awareness, 4. Beautiful beaches, 5. Ancient structures, 6. Amazing food, 7. Self awareness, and it goes on, and on, and on……..

But I also LOVE Christmas at home with family.

Merry Christmas

Christmas in Thailand 2012

Last year we spent Christmas in Thailand at  Elephant Nature Park, and as much as we loved and appreciated our time there, it just wasn’t the same as being at home. Ever since I was little, I have always loved Christmas.

I have very fond memories of Christmas with family. We always got together at my grandparents house, sitting by the fire sipping on my grandmothers home made cinnamon liqueur (not me) listening to Christmas carols, eating too much food, and most importantly being with family. It is not about the gifts, or the shopping, it is about that nostalgic feeling I get every year when Christmas comes around (I feel the same way about Halloween, but that’s another blog)

Merry Christmas

Giselle with her Mom, Aunt and Grandma

This December we planned on spending Christmas in Malaysia. We were looking forward to it, but we still had the same sad feeling we always have when we’re away from home at Christmas.


Somehow, this year, we got what we wished for! My Mom really wanted us home for the holidays, and so her gift to us was two flights home to Toronto for 3 weeks!!

Merry Christmas

Flying into Toronto

And so, on December 18th we boarded our flights from BKK to Seoul, Seoul to Chicago, and Chicago to Toronto. 24 hours later, we arrived on December 18th in Toronto!!

We were exhausted but Thrilled!

We arrived to a beautiful white Toronto.

After coming home to rest for a few hours, we made our way to my aunts house to surprise her and my grandmother. The surprise was a success!!! They were in shock!! What an amazing feeling it was to be able to surprise them. You can check out the video of us surprising family here.

For the past several years, Christmas has been held at my aunt and uncles place. There are usually about 20 people there on Christmas eve. We have a big dinner together, enjoy each others company, and participate in Kris Kringle. The next day we go over again for gift giving and a more intimate dinner.

Merry Christmas

Lots of family and lots of food

This Christmas in Toronto was perfect. It was sunny, and we had a beautiful soft snow fall. There is something so beautiful about a sunny icy white day, that is still, and in complete silence.

As much as we love traveling, our wish is to always be with family during the holidays.

This year we got our wish.

Comments To This Entry.
  1. Brandi J. Waits December 30, 2013 Reply

    Fabulous Post! Having just spent my first Christmas in Indonesia – away from my family – your post truly resonated with me. I love traveling more than anything in the world (the people, the experiences, the self awareness and the list goes on and on) – Alas, this year was a great reminder to me that holidays are meant to be spent with family and friends that created the traditions of ones past.

    Looking forward to getting home and hugging my family and friends a little tighter and knowing that my travel schedule will no longer include extended periods away from family during the holiday season. And, of course, already thinking about travel plans for next year ;-).

    Blessings and Namaste to you!

    • Giselle and Cody December 30, 2013 Reply

      Brandi, we are so glad that you enjoyed our little Christmas cheer. We were suppose to be in Malaysia for Christmas but we are very happy to have been able to come home and spend it with family. It is the one time of the year where we miss home so much. It’s just not the same being in Thailand and having no snow to wake up to 🙂 It is nice to enjoy the snow and the cold weather before we head back out on the road January 10th and fly into Jakarta.

  2. Elizabeth Medeiros December 30, 2013 Reply

    What a beautiful blog! Well, our Christmas Wish came true too! We wished that Giselle and could be home for Christmas and thanks to Lucia, our wish came true! A couple of weeks before Christmas, I was sharing a moment with Lucia, and tears came to my eyes and I said “I miss Giselle and I want to see her” (and Cody too) Maybe that had something to do with it.. lol

    We have shared many years together on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. The gifts are always fun, but it is that feeling of family and love that creates the wonderful memories.

    Thanks for coming home for Christmas!

    • Giselle and Cody December 30, 2013 Reply

      Tia Liz, it is always so wonderful to be with family during the holidays. We are so happy that we could make it home to spend Christmas with all of you. It is one time that we miss home so much. It was also great that Aaron was home from school so that we could all be together. Thank you so much for making this year so awesome. We had a wonderful time and can’t wait for the next Christmas with family. We love you!!

  3. Alex December 30, 2013 Reply

    I am officially jealous! I spent Christmas in Thailand in 2011 but my family came to join me so I was thrilled. This year in Ecuador was my first time away from them and it just wasn’t the same. I vowed to make it home next year.

    • Giselle and Cody December 30, 2013 Reply

      We know how you feel Alex. Last year we spent christmas in Thailand and it just wasn’t the same without family.
      Hopefully we will be able to travel but make it home for Christmas every year. That would be the perfect way to travel.

  4. Mindy & Ligeia December 30, 2013 Reply

    We stopped officially celebrating Christmas about 6 years ago, escaping from the mass consumerist culture it has become. This year, we went into the office and worked, just like any other Wednesday. And it’s certainly been cold enough here in Thailand, that we don’t miss the winter, snow and icy Christmases of our past!

    • Giselle and Cody December 31, 2013 Reply

      We don’t buy into the whole consumerist culture either but Christmas is easily our favourite time of the year. All of the family gets together for lots of food, drinks and fun. To us it’s not about spending money on family, it’s about spending time with family 🙂

  5. Franca December 31, 2013 Reply

    I’m glad you made it back home for Christmas, I know how important and nice is to spend this time of the year with the loved ones, perhaps next year we have to make it happen for us two as well. The holidays aren’t over yet though, have a great NYE and especially a fab start of the new year, full of new experiences, travelling and hopefully we’ll get to meet again somewhere 😉

    • Giselle and Cody December 31, 2013 Reply

      Hey Franca!! How was your holidays? How are you two doing? It is very important to spend time with family during the holidays. How is the whole house/dog sitting going? Looking forward to hearing about that. 🙂 Happy Holidays Guys!!!

  6. Diana Edelman January 1, 2014 Reply

    You know, I felt very nostalgic this holiday season. I really would have loved to have gone home. You’re lucky you were able to get back for the holidays! Am sure your family was sooo happy!!

    • Giselle and Cody January 2, 2014 Reply

      It’s always nice to be home with family for the holidays.
      I am sure you had a nice time with your CM family.

  7. Erica January 7, 2014 Reply

    It looks pretty awesome guys. What did you do for gear? Did your mom show up with jackets in tow?

    • Giselle and Cody January 8, 2014 Reply

      We had all of our gear packed away at home, and yes, Giselle’s mom brought winter boots and jackets for us. There is ALOT of snow in Toronto right now.

  8. Lucia January 10, 2014 Reply

    Those are some great photos of the family at Christmas!!!
    It was soooooo Wonderful seeing you both at home for the holidays.
    You have “No Idea” how grateful I am to both of you for coming home
    for Christmas!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The house felt so much
    more warm and filled with happiness with you guys here.

    love you both, OXOX

    • Giselle and Cody January 16, 2014 Reply

      We are so happy that we had the chance to come home to spend time with family.
      It is easily our favourite time of the year. Going over to Tia Liz’s house and hanging out with all the family,
      Swapping gifts in the Kris Kringle, and being being able to relax with great company. Love you all and thank you!!!

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