Keeping in touch with family

For anyone who knows my story, you'll know that I live states away from my family. They live in Indiana, I live in Kansas--that's about a nine hour drive! So, we don't get to see each other too much. I've only lived in Kansas for a year now and have saved up enough PTO at work to take quite a few trips home, but it's nothing compared to how much time I used to spend with them before. That's why keeping in touch via other means is soooo important.

My family is pretty big (I have 3 other sisters!), and the older we get the more we get along, the more fun we have, and the more we really appreciate one another. Same goes for my mom and dad--they'll always be my parents, but now they are my friends too! I miss them more than I ever thought I would because I truly appreciate their company now and want to be doing things with them every day.

Finding ways to keep in touch regularly has been the most valuable thing I did when moving hundreds of miles away. 

Wine Wednesday

This is my mom and I's tradition. It all started on New Years (I don't really know how, maybe we were a little too tipsy to remember the details), but somehow it came up that we could Facetime with each other every single Wednesday, drink wine, and catch up. We have not missed a Wednesday (or that we didn't make up on another day) in all of 2017!

We like to use an app called House Party because it's just like Facetime except it allows for more than one person. This means that while we're sipping wine my other sisters can see that we are online and join in the fun!

Wine Wednesday is an AMAZING weekly tradition that I hope we never stop doing. Even when we're busy we continue to catch up--mom props up her phone and eats her dinner while we talk, I take care of my garden and show her all my plants, she asks me about my journals, and I make sure to catch up on everything that my sisters have been up to.

Group Chat

So, we've had a "Fam Bam" group chat on iMessage for awhile now. It's nothing new, but it means more to me now than ever before. I don't even think my family realizes. But when my sisters message eachother and bicker with one another or send pictures of the others sleeping with their mouth open it means so much to me!! I get to see them and talk to them and catch little snippets about what each of these goobers are up to.

We uses the group chat to send funny things, keep each other in the loop about awesome life events or major appointments, and most importantly we can just passively chat. Having a group chat with my family means that I don't always have to send a message but I can still peak in and see them talking about Blake's softball game or how Missy's doing in college.

Weekly Vlogs

And obviously this blog and my videos allow me to keep in touch with family. They know what I'm doing, they can check up on my social media, and they can watch a little documentary about my life every single week.

This blog originally started when I was in college as a means to keep in touch with family while I was a few hours away in school. It gradually transformed into my portfolio, but now it's back again as a personal space to share my daily/weekly/random thoughts.

As for Trevor and I's vlogs, I've always loved vlogging and making movies, so this was a natural way for me to do those creative things and talk to family and friends all week. If you don't know about my vlogs--they're a weekly post that goes up every single Wednesday at 10am! Get caught up here, and subscribe so you don't miss next week's!

Having a routine and some consistent traditions that make sure I keep in touch with my family every week has really helped me survive from states away. Does anyone else live a ways away from friends or family? How do you keep in touch? Let me know in the comment section below.