The holidays in the City of Angels are all about creating family. For the most part, this city is filled with transplants who have at some point engaged in manifest destiny.

Part of growing up (in my estimation) is realizing that family and home are what you make of them and not necessarily what you are given. I don’t say this to take away from my family because the truth is that we are VERY close. I talk to my mother and sister just about every day. But we all have to discover what this life and this world have to offer us, and for my family it has meant going to explore and find the place that we each call home.

It is not a very practical thing to travel for every holiday, and part of making Los Angeles (or wherever you land) home is really putting down some roots and saying, This is where I will celebrate important moments and milestones.

Especially around the holidays, I surround myself with people who encompass my life here. That means instead of getting on a plane for Thanksgiving, I drive the 20 minutes to my friend Evi’s house and enjoy a large dinner filled with friends and random people who I don’t know.

LA is really a melting pot, filled with many cultures and people from all over the country and the world. Because of this, there is no one way or right way to do things. There is only the opportunity and adventure to figure out what each holiday means to me and what my family will do to celebrate and create our own traditions.

Next time, a Jew searches for a Christmas tree in Los Angeles…