A Colorado wife and mom was determined to keep the Christmas spirit alive despite missing her husband, Brandon, who is stationed with the Air Force in Iraq.
Even though the family couldn't be together physically, Ashley Sistrunk came up with an idea to create a Christmas card that would reunite the family.
One sign, a handful of pictures and some creative photo editing later, the Sistrunk family came together in a touching, yet funny way.
She posted her two favorite photos on Facebook and Instagram to share with a few friends and family as a way to feel included in the holiday festivities.
That's when things got crazy.
I hate wanting to wish away a holiday. Christmas is one of my favorite holidays, but with Brandon gone and the kids begging to have him home on Christmas, it just won't be the same. I know we are supposed to "live for today!", but I wish I could wake up tomorrow and have it be late January! It makes me sad for couples who aren't truly the best of friends. Brandon is my best friend in the whole world and my heart needs him home! Can someone call Ellen and tell her to bring him home for me?! K thanks? #deployment #christmas
The photos became a social media sensation as not only did her loved ones like it and share it, but complete strangers connected with her images and passed on the love to others.
“We posted it on my actual Facebook and a lot of people on my friend list liked it, and I liked how it turned out, but I didn’t at all expect it to turn into this,” Ashley told ABC News.
Sistrunk said she had intention to find her family's 15 minutes of fame. Her goal for the Christmas card was simple.
“We just wanted to feel a part of the holiday season like everyone else,” she said.