When we talk about the holidays many shutter. There are expectations, traditions, places and events you are expected to attend. How do you manage all that with your new little person? How do you make everyone happy? How do you maintain your sanity?
The place to start is in your own home. Talk with your mate about what you want to do. Listen to what is the most important to him. Come to an agreement on what means the most to the two of you. Then spread out to the other expectations looming out there.
Understand that most likely everyone will not get exactly what they want. That is OK. Some times a holiday will need to be celebrated on a day other than the holiday itself to accommodate all needs. I have a dear friend who arranges a catered brunch for her extended family at Christmas each year. Sometimes it takes place on Christmas morning. Other times it is the day before or later in the week. No one is bothered by the fact that they can not always be together on the exact holiday. They enjoy the time together, the great food, and the Gift Box Game….more later. Know these same ideas apply to Hanukkah, Quanza, or what ever your holiday of choice may be
With a little planning and consideration you can come to an arrangement that pleases most. For those who are not able to go with the flow, make an effort to spend individual time with them at another opportunity. Maybe your effort to meet their needs will soften the blow.
Most often the arrival of your first child brings changes in the ways holidays are spent. Prior to this it is just the two of you. You could pick up and go easily, even travel if need be. Where as the arrival of a baby complicates the matter. If you think ahead, consider your own needs first together, then offer your suggestions to others you will not be torn, as much. Of course you want to make everyone happy. Over the year this hopefully will happen. Maybe Thanksgiving is spent with one family group while Christmas or Hanukkah with the other. And the holiday can be reversed the following year. Either way, your own family comes first. Creating a peaceful holiday tradition for the future will smooth over complications and misunderstandings.
THE GIFT BOX GAME: My friend, Carol, developed this game as her kids grew into adulthood. She decorates beautiful boxes each year, putting cash in them. The cash is the money she would have spent on gifts if purchasing them. It varies each year. The clincher is that one box has the bulk of the budget, maybe $200! The remaining boxes have anything from $1 to $50. They play a game to see who gets to choose the first box from the pile. (You can create you own game). With out opening any boxes each of the boxes is selected. If you want to choose a box someone else had you may, one time. Otherwise you select a box from the pile. After all the boxes have been removed from the pile each player opens his box. Their family goes crazy realizing the first box they had was the BIG ONE! Ha! Ha! Be sure to take lots of photos. It can get crazy!!!
Disclaimer: Ha! Clearly this is a game for adults, or mature teens. Little ones receive individual gifts from Grama and Grampa or you!!