Home for the Holidays: Students Describe their Journey Home

Story by Alysha Lewis, photos courtesy of Morgan Carr and Carley Fure

Some students’ holiday breaks begin with traveling across state lines and enduring hours of long car rides to go home and spend  time with their families.

For many Central Michigan University students, a drive home varies from 30 minutes to about three hours. Other students endure longer drives home up to nine hours.

From the hustle and bustle of the windy city, to the rural college town of Mount Pleasant, junior Morgan Carr travels four hours during the holiday season to her hometown of Chicago, IL. Days leading up to break, Carr strategically packs her bag for the trip because she’ll never know what kind of adventures the trip home will bring her. Along with packing bags, Carr has to plan out her route home and leave early enough to avoid traffic.

“This year, I left the day before Thanksgiving and the traffic was horrible, so it took me a little over four hours to hit Illinois.” said Carr.  Christmas is a favorite holiday for a lot of people, it’s a time when students get to go home and spend quality time with their family.

“For Christmas, we host it at our house,” said Carr. “It’s a big thing in our family, we have all types of food, games and prizes. Every year we make a family Christmas movie. It sounds corny, but it creates so many memories.”

Along with family time, students love their parents’ home cooking, which is the case for Carr.

“The best part of being home is the food. Chicago has some of the greatest food you’ll ever eat,” Carr said. “Macaroni and ham are a must-have for the holiday; it’s just the best especially if you mix the macaroni with yams.”

In the opposite direction lives junior Carley Fure. Fure lives in Marquette, located in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. Before going home, Fure is sure to grab her snow boots and winter jacket, as it’s a necessity. The weather in the UP can change in a split second and before you know it, there’s a foot of snow.

“It takes me about 6 hours to get home,” Fure said. “If the weather is bad, it can take me up to 8 hours to get home, so I have plenty of snacks handy.”

Like most, Fure has a special furry friend that she adores seeing every time she’s home. During the holidays, Fure looks forward to spending time with her horse, Diego.

“The best part about going home for the holidays is getting to see Diego,” Fure said. “I love my family, but I love my horse a little more.”

In the summer, Fure works at the ranch in her hometown that allows her to see Diego whenever she wants.

“I love going home for the holidays because I get to see my family, my horse, my extended family and friends at the ranch,” Fure said. “The drive is long and sometimes brutal, but it’s always worth it to see the smiles on their faces.”

There’s no doubt that CMU has some of the most unique students on its campus, but the stories they tell about their journey back home for the holidays is surely one for the books!

Safe travels and happy holidays, CMU!