Home is a top of mind subject for a lot of people around the holidays. Whether you are going home, missing home or creating home, we all have strong feelings surrounding the idea of home. For me, home is my solace. I'm in a weird part of my life where I feel like home is my parent’s house, but I have also created a home in Chicago. However, when I think of going home, I still typically picture the house I grew up in and made memories with my family in.

As we approach the holiday season, people have various ideas about the idea of home. Some people love going home for the holidays, others go home to a broken home, or even worse some don't have any home to go to. While it is easy to get wrapped up in the festivities of the season, it is important to think of those who lack the resources to have the same happy holidays we know and love.

This year will be the first time in a long time that I’m not going to my parent’s house for Christmas. I have struggled to come to terms with this arrangement. Christmas is very important to me and I always want it to be perfect. It’s hard for me to be okay with change, especially with something as significant as the holidays.

Recently I have worked on an end-of-the-year giving plan at work. This plan would encourage people to donate to emergency services for their seasonal giving. This money goes to organizations like Operation Warm that provides winter coats for underserved children. It would also provide meals to low income families and seniors. Working on this project really puts my situation into perspective for me, and it makes me feel really selfish about complaining about the location of my holiday celebration.

During this time of year, it is easy to get wrapped up in the festivities and the excess, but we have to remember what is really important. I am lucky to be able to spend Christmas with my family in a warm house, with food and presents, surrounded by people that love me. To  me, this is what home is all about.

- Bria