Deck the goddamn halls

I know I promised to tell you all about the delightful family Christmas breakfast at my house on the weekend but I was struck down with a killer migraine and am only just now feeling alive enough to even consider sitting in front of the computer for a little while.  This migraine, it was one of the worst I’ve had.  Normally they don’t make me sick but I spent all day yesterday throwing up whatever I tried to put in my stomach.  Which did my head no favours as I couldn’t keep the painkillers down either.  It was Not Good.

So these are the flowers the boy bought me for the week:  little red orchids and the orange things, I have no idea what they’re called.  I think the orchids are sweet but I do not like the colour of the other flowers, only I haven’t the heart to tell him because he was so pleased with himself for buying me something different.  Very cute.

Red Orchid

Alstromeira

About the breakfast.  First let me explain what Christmas is like in my family.  Remember, we are all Polish so we celebrate Christmas Eve, rather than Christmas Day.  My mother and my aunt take it in turns to host, and try and make us all die from over eating.  We don’t have a huge family but these days would be about 10 or 12 of us for dinner.  And of course my mother and my aunt both insist on making at least five or six courses for dinner, and that doesn’t include the coffee and cake later in the evening.  It’s a LOT of work and they both spend the whole night in the kitchen freaking out about the food and worrying if everyone has enough, and is the roast beef cooked properly, because god forbid someone should have to eat red meat that isn’t well done, and have we all had enough pierogi to eat.  Meanwhile, my father or my uncle (depending on whose house we are at) are spending their entire time cleaning up and making sure everyone has enough to drink.  This rushing around and cooking and cleaning and everything else is not my idea of fun.  I have repeatedly told my mother and my aunt that we should be going out to dinner on Christmas Eve, so that someone else can do the cooking and the cleaning and the worrying, but they stubbornly persist.  That argument (and it is a BIG one) will be a story for another day.

So to breakfast.  When we were kids, we’d have the usual Christmas Eve palaver with lots of eating and presents, and then on Christmas morning just the four (mum, dad, my sister, me) of us would get up and have breakfast, and do more presents from “under the tree”.  When we were kids, it was fun.  As we’ve gotten older, not so much.  Christmas Day the boy and I drive down to his parent’s place to see them, and my sister and her boyfriend go to his mother’s house.  So my father, insisting that we keep up the tradition of Christmas morning, suggests we have the breakfast on the weekend before Christmas, as everybody is working during the week and my sister and I are not there for Christmas Day.

The problem is, it’s not Christmas.  And although I said I’d have the breakfast at my house this year, I resent it with every fibre of my being.  And perhaps I am being churlish, but to me what’s the point of a Christmas breakfast when it’s not even Christmas?  And everyone buys everyone more presents, it’s just getting silly.  So this year, I put my foot down.  We are not doing Christmas breakfast any more.  There are no children in our families, the youngest is 26, the magic of Christmas is not so important.  We’ll still have our Christmas Eve dinner/arguments, but that’s a story for another day.

I’ll be really happy when this week is over.

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5 responses to “Deck the goddamn halls

  1. Kate December 22, 2009 at 2:01 pm

    Well, I love the red flowers and I hope they bring some cheer into your home and heart! Holidays can be really tough, depressing, stressful, and lots of other negative things. I hope that you can find some cheer this year!

  2. barb December 23, 2009 at 1:43 am

    I use to know what the orange thingys are, but I forgot. I love the Christmas season, but it has gotten too full of itself, hasn’t it? Stress, stress and more stress. It’s all about the retail monster… and unlike you… I hate shopping!

  3. Author December 23, 2009 at 11:19 pm

    Oh I so sorry to hear about the Christmas stress and anxiety ~ now wonder you had the mother of all migraines. I’m glad you’re feeling better.

    We don’t stress about Christmas in our house at all. I just write a list, we shop ~ then we drop, and enjoy it! We don’t spend scads of money or feel obliged to make visits we don’t want to make. Our kids are grown up and have children of their own ~ so we all gather up for a special celebration meal (but not on christmas day) and it’s usually stress free. If the food is not cooked well enough, or cooked too much, who cares! It’s the being together that’s important to us, nothing else matters.

    I think people in general stress way too much about Christmas ~ and in doing so they forget the real meaning, or the meaning of it to them. It’s such a pity. Christmas to me is seeing my kids and grandkids ~ and spending time at home with P and the cats.

    Have a great time, whatever you do. HAPPY CHRISTMAS from my house to yours.

  4. Steve & Kat December 24, 2009 at 8:22 am

    I feel like I have become a scrooge about the holidays too. I just want the time off work and I don’t care about the actual celebration so much. It’s just another day, but surrounded by a week where I don’t have to go to work and I want to sit around and do nothing. Plus I stress out so much about what to buy David’s family because I don’t really know them and he’s no help. I just want to say no presents!

  5. jen December 24, 2009 at 2:53 pm

    believe me, both of my posts today were almost titled “merry f-ing christmas”. (said the sweet little pastor’s wife.)

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