Who’s coming home for the holidays?

Getting the family together for the holidays used to be a simple affair. Each Thanksgiving and Christmas the whole mob would descend on our house, whether we wanted them to or not.

But in the age of blended families, fractured families and coast-to-coast careers, it’s become a logistical nightmare.

My stepson, his wife and their baby live in Oregon and would like to be here. But they just flew in for his mom’s birthday last month and they’re flying in again for Thanksgiving this month. To make that long trip with a baby a third time for Christmas would be asking a lot, even though the kid probably would become the first two-year-old ever to wind up with enough frequent flyer miles to travel business class to Europe.

My second son lives in Virginia with two 12-year-olds, two puppies, two cats and one wife. Just packing them and all their stuff into an SUV for a three-day trip takes four days.

My third son lives in North Carolina with a wife, a baby and a dog the size of a Shetland pony. They traditionally spend Thanksgiving with her family. They’d be willing to drive to Ohio for Christmas, but the dog tends to get car sick. With a kid in diapers and an upchucking dog, things could get pretty rank in their car by the time they hit West Virginia.

My daughter and her husband still live in the area, but they usually spend the holidays with his family, although sometimes they can pop in for dessert after Thanksgiving dinner. I don’t know what they do for Christmas, but I’m pretty sure they don’t do it at our house.

My first son and his daughter also still live close by, but his other daughter lives with her mom in Seattle and is too young to make the trip here alone. Maybe my stepson in Oregon could swing through Washington and pick her up on his way.

One solution, I suggested, was that my wife and I could drive to North Carolina for Christmas at my third son’s house and my second son and his family could join us there. But apparently my third son’s big dog does not get along with my second son’s little dogs and watching their little dogs being eaten by a big dog probably would take the glow off of Christmas for the 12-year-olds.

It’s becoming increasingly obvious that my family may never all be together again, but I’m not giving up.

Next year, my wife and I might fly to Kansas City, rent a couple of rooms at a Marriott and celebrate whatever holiday it happens to be with whoever happens to show up.