I know. I know. There are probably very few people that agree with me on this. And that’s fine. You don’t have to agree.
But, I honestly HATE the Holiday’s.
Yes, I am your modern day Grinch.
My hatred is deep rooted.
As a child of divorced parents, I am always pulled in a million different directions. I know this is very typical for ANYONE that has divorced parents.
For me, it left a pretty big impression, even though my parents divorced when I was young.
It was always go, go, go. A couple hours here, a couple hours there…
“Hurry up and eat your breakfast because now we have to go here.”
“Don’t eat too much dinner here because we have to eat again in a couple hours.”
“Let’s hurry up and open these gifts so we can go to the next place.”
At one point, I remember we went to 5 places one Christmas Day.
I just knew when I had kids, this was not the life I wanted for them or for myself.
Each year I find myself cutting back on the places we go and the amount of money we spend on gifts and I am 100% not apologetic for it.
When I had Raelynn, I immediately told my husband that something had to change. At this point, we were having 4 Christmas’s on Christmas Day, NOT including opening gifts at our house.
My grandma immediately obliged to move Christmas breakfast to the weekend before.
Another year later, I became pregnant with Briar and we moved into a bigger house. I asked my parents to come to my house for Christmas day. They immediately said yes.
Our Christmas starts the weekend before and we celebrate with my dad and stepmom and my grandma.
On Christmas Day, we now go two places and I can eventually see that being one place.
Even though people have compromised for us, it’s not always met with happiness. I think that’s to be expected, and it’s not comfortable, but, I also just do not care anymore.
We somehow managed to get Christmas Eve all to ourselves, but we had to say no to going places in order to do this. By saying no to Christmas Eve events, we miss out on seeing family that we do love spending time with, but this also means, we get to create our own Christmas traditions with our kids.
For Scott and I, Christmas traditions looks like spending time together…Christmas crafts, making Christmas cookies, watching Christmas movies, reading Christmas books.
Scott and I have decided that Christmas Eve will always be our day with the kids and we will not conform to what anyone else wants.
I want to be able to take this time with MY kids while they are little and ENJOY them being little.
One day, my kids will have their own spouses and children and they will have their own traditions and WE will have to conform to them and I am 100% okay with that.
I will listen to them and accommodate to their schedule, regardless of what day it is.
I think people are so stuck on the idea that Christmas HAS to be celebrated on Christmas in order to get the “full effect”, whatever that “full effect” may be.
But, I’m calling bullshit. If people were more willing to celebrate on a different day, as opposed to jam packing Christmas Day, you would probably have a lot less stressed out individuals at your Christmas party…
Gifts are another reason I hate the holiday’s.
Since we have had kids, we cut back each year on the amount of money we spend. At one point we were spending $2000 on Christmas gifts for everyone around us and that was not including exchanging gifts for Scott and I.
Okay, can we be honest for a second, $2000 is fucking ridiculous.
Do you know what I could do for $2000?
I could take my family on a small vacation that we have never been on.
I could pay off one of my small student loans with that money.
I could upgrade my entire family’s wardrobe with that money.
My family and I could do small, fun things throughout the year with that money.
I do not go into debt by spending the amount of money. We set money aside throughout the year to account for this.
But, I have made the decision that I am just not going to do it anymore.
I am not going to stress over getting the perfect gift for anyone. And likewise, I do not want anyone to stress over getting me the perfect gift.
In all honesty, I want nothing. I want to spend time with my family because that’s what matters to me.
Anyone that has a husband knows us wives DO IT ALL when it comes to buying gifts for Christmas.
It never fails on Christmas Day, Scott will ask, “What did we get so and so for their gift?”
Just another reason that I am refusing to put so much pressure on gifts.
Each year as we pull back on what we spend, I definitely get the side eye and a comment to the effect of, “Well, you only have to spend $20 per person, so I don’t understand?” When there are 5 people in my family, that’s me saving $100 this year…snowball that into me saying no to ANOTHER Christmas drawing…that’s $200 that I do not have to spend the following year. You get the picture.
Some will even call me selfish.
I don’t give a fuck.
Call me selfish all you want.
Please take a walk in my house and you would have to take your shoes off to count how many toys you will trip over in the living room area. Don’t get me started on their bedrooms.
Which brings me to my next point.
Fuck all these toys.
I get it. Jesus, I get it.
It is fun to watch kids open gifts and just watch their little eyes almost come out of their head because they are so excited because you just got them exactly what they asked for for Christmas.
It’s almost as if you’ve won the lottery.
You did it. You got the perfect gift.
But, can I tell you something.
In one month, if not sooner, your child will have moved on from that perfect toy and they will most certainly be saying they have no toys to play with.
Excuse me?!?!?! Do I need to remind you the THOUSANDS of gifts you received not even one month ago
“Yea, but those are old…yea, but they aren’t fun anymore…yea, but I’m bored…”
Please, introduce me to a child that isn’t bored with all the toys they got from Christmas on January 31st and I will show you a freaking unicorn of a child.
I am not saying don’t get gifts for your kids. We absolutely spend money on our kids for toys, or games, or books. I am saying, don’t fucking spend $2000 on gifts! It’s crazy! And stupid! For something that will just be pushed to the back of the toy box in one month and forgotten about.
Can I tell you what I want for my kids?
Get them movie tickets, get them gift cards to fun places like Chuck E. Cheese or McDonalds, get them things they will remember! They will remember going to the movies and seeing Frozen 2! They will remember getting a belly ache from all that popcorn they ate! They will remember skipping nap time and eating chocolate at the movie theater!
They will not give a shit about that Barbie House that you worked extra hours for just so you could buy that for them because they told you this would be the perfect gift for Christmas…ASK ME HOW I KNOW THIS!!
I think the real meaning of Christmas is so far gone at this point.
My perfect Christmas would involve NO GIFTS AT ALL, spending time with family, socializing and catching up on life events, letting the kids run around and play, and NOT going 1,000 different places, no TV’s, no phones. JUST BEING PRESENT AND IN THE MOMENT.
Or just going to the beach on Christmas. That would work too.
Thank you for coming to my Ted Talk 🙂