I have fond memories of my trips to Pap's and Grandma's during the Christmas break. Once the final school week of the year was complete our family would make the eleven hour drive from Roswell, GA to Arden, WV (located in the panhandle). It was a vacation my brother and I looked forward to for months! It didn't matter that the trip took as long as it did; after all, there were fun stops along the way (I remember the purchases of candy and Fun Pads at the Stuckey's on I-81) and restaurants to enjoy when we got hungry. And then, after traversing northern VA for a while, my brother and I excitedly eyed the large, blue-colored metal sign which hung like a proud banner over the interstate. It read: "Welcome to Wild, Wonderful, West Virginia" My brother and I would throw our pillows in the air and shout for joy--we knew we were minutes from our exit, minutes from our grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins, minutes from Grandma's goodie drawer (filled with Wise-brand chips, cookies and candy), minutes from her fridge stocked with RC Cola, minutes from playing ball in the lot or at the church basketball hoop, minutes from eating Grandma's famous vegetable soup, minutes from playing board games with the family, and minutes from laughing until we'd all lose track of time. We knew we'd make memories and we knew we'd hate to leave when it was time to go. Bottom line? We knew Pap's and Grandma's house was a place of Christmas joy. On our trip to WV it was easy for my parents to witness the looks on their sons' faces--faces which communicated blissful anticipation, gleeful expectation, and hope-filled hearts.