There’s No Place Like Home for the Holidays

Posted: November 14, 2011 in Celebrations, Family, Holidays, Life, Relationships
Tags: , , , , ,

So as silly as this may sound, at the age of 29, I’ve never really been in a serious relationship around the holidays. I did take a guy home LAST Thanksgiving, but about a week and a half after that he basically broke up with me by not returning my calls. And no, it was not because he met my family—for those of you who have met them, you know they’re awesome. And if you haven’t met them, you have NO idea what you’re missing.

Anyhow, back to my topic sentence. 29, never really been in a serious relationship around the holidays. Ends up that won’t be the case this holiday season and I’m super excited about it. Thing is, between the two of us we have two Thanksgivings and five Christmases—and this is uncharted territory for me—I don’t know how to split Thanksgivings and Christmases.

Everybody was raised with their own traditions—so what do you do when traditions collide? The hard part is that more than likely in each other’s families—there are OTHER families that need to be accommodated. Meaning that I can’t expect my boyfriend’s family to accommodate MY Christmases when there are others on THEIR side who need to be kept in mind too.

So what do you do? I’ve always gone to my mom’s side on Christmas Eve, we have a mini immediate family Christmas on Christmas morning where inevitably the dog always gets yelled at, and we go to my dad’s side on Christmas Day where inevitably grandma always gets bent out of shape about something and grandpa just laughs at her.

So seriously…what do you do? The holidays are supposed to be spent with family—but what if it just won’t work to see all your family? Do you skip some of them? Do you try to spend a little bit of time at each of them like Vince Vaughn and Reese Witherspoon did in Four Christmases? Do you stress yourself out trying to get the two sides of the family to work together? Or do you freak out, pull a Christmas with the Kranks, and go on a cruise and not go to ANY Christmases?

First off, the last one is a bit extreme—and not celebrating Christmas at all would be like not eating a hot dog at a baseball game. Secondly, tryptophan, that chemical in turkey, makes you FAR too sleepy to go to two Thanksgivings in one day. So here’s what you need to do. You need to pray that the families you have to deal with are as amazing as ours are.

I actually am kind of serious about that, but if you’re not the praying kind—I suppose I should come up with a different solution for you. So first off, breathe. The holidays can actually be pretty stressful for some, which is silly, because they’re supposed to be joyous occasions. However, what we tend to forget, maybe on purpose, is that every family is at the very least, slightly dysfunctional. Secondly, figure out who’s having what and when, and plan accordingly. Yes, you may have to miss the Thanksgiving with your grandma’s pumpkin bread, or the Christmas where your drunk uncle passes out under the tree—but you know what? You get to do that NEXT year, and you miss HIS Thanksgiving where the dog somehow always gets the first bite of turkey, and HIS Christmas where his grandma references Baby Jesus and then uses the ‘f’ word 10 words later. It’s all about compromise my friends.

Luckily, our families have it figured out, at least for this year—mainly thanks to his dad’s side having Christmas the week AFTER Christmas. And you know what? There was no drama. So we now have a Thanksgiving the Sunday before, one on the actual day, a Christmas on Christmas Eve, one Christmas morning, one Christmas Day afternoon, one Christmas Day night, and one sometime the weekend of New Year’s. Three Christmases in one day, in three different locations is a lot—don’t get me wrong—but at least there weren’t mashed potatoes thrown across the room when trying to decide where, when, and how we were celebrating the holidays. You all should have it this easy when planning where to go on the holidays.

I realize there will more than likely come a time where a Thanksgiving or a Christmas needs to be skipped—and we’ll cross that bridge when we get to it. I think it will probably be okay. As long as I have turkey on Thanksgiving and Santa can find me on Christmas Eve, we’ll be just fine.

  1. […] Christmases went off without a hitch—even with going to three different ones on Christmas Day. Our families are pretty amazing, so that helps. This was the first Christmas I’ve ever had to split time with someone else’s […]

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