Christmas in Cappadocia

by Sean McLachlan. Posted Dec 20th 2013 10:30 AM
Winter - Cappadocia, Turkey
Zafer Yazici, Flickr

I used to hate Christmas.

Christmas was not a happy time in the McLachlan household. A holiday that emphasized the joys of family did not go over well with a group of people who couldn't stand each other. Gifts were grudgingly given and indifferently received. The turkey was consumed in edgy silence. The worst of it all was that everyone was expected to paste on smiles and pretend they were having a great time.

That all changed when I spent my first Christmas away from home, in 1993. I had just started a year crossing Asia, and mid-December found me in Cappadocia, Turkey.
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When Santa Rinpoche Came to Town

by Lavinia Spalding. Posted Dec 20th 2013 10:30 AM
Dolly Spalding

When I was young, I was a stickler for Christmas traditions. If my father forgot to wear the Santa Claus hat, I pouted. If we didn't watch "How the Grinch Stole Christmas," I cried. If hot cocoa wasn't served with breakfast, I was capable of a four-star conniption. Dinner was roast goose or Yorkshire pudding -- any substitutions and I about lost my mind.

By all accounts, I wasn't actually a difficult child, but when I was 10 we moved from New Hampshire to Arizona, and I didn't adjust well. I missed our farmhouse and my friends, and I clung to these annual rituals because they made our new house feel like a home. And then I continued clinging, for 20 more years, until the Christmas I learned to let go.
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7 Remote Spots to Completely Escape the Holiday Madness

by Anna Brones. Posted Dec 17th 2013 01:31 PM
Tree house in snow
You just can't bear the idea of another stressful holiday season, with out-of-town in-laws overstaying their welcome and ugly sweater parties. So what's your best option? Cut out of town and escape civilization entirely.

Nothing's better for avoiding this time of year than holing up in the middle of nowhere where you can't be reached. So look no further than these seven spots.
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Discover Something New at Home in Seattle

by Leslie Forsberg. Posted Dec 17th 2013 11:00 AM
Seattle is more colorful than ever this holiday season. The festive Great Wheel spins merrily on the waterfront, and the Chihuly Garden and Glass exhibit lights up the Seattle Center. Chefs are reimagining Northwest cuisine at new restaurants around the city. New residents continue to arrive, and condos are springing up in neighborhoods, leading to plenty of grumbling. Still, Seattleites have much to be proud of.
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Discover Something New at Home in Indianapolis

by Megan Fernandez. Posted Dec 17th 2013 11:00 AM
Soldiers and Sailors Monument Indianapolis
Naptowners, as the cool kids say these days, are a little hoarse from all the cheering lately. The Pacers started the season on a tear, and Andrew Luck is still basking in the glow of his instant-classic win against Peyton Manning in October. Pack your face paint and party with the rabid sports crowd on Georgia Street, gussied up last year for the Super Bowl.
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