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Author Topic: Your holiday hill to die on.  (Read 866460 times)

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weeblewobble

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #1380 on: December 02, 2014, 08:14:56 AM »
I have one major hill after hosting a last minute Thanksgiving Day gathering for my inlaws (moved to my home due to a family emergency) and a separate gathering over the weekend for my own family (long term plans) - I AM NOT A CHILD. I am in my mid 30s. I know how to cook. I know how to clean. I know how to host an event. And what I don't know how to do, my husband makes up for. He's awesome. If I have been asked to host a gathering in my home because other homes are not available, you will let me host it.

There will be no taking over the menu.  I am using our favorite method of fixing the turkey and stuffing. If you prefer it a different way, you are welcome to prepare you own small batch in the way you enjoy.

There will be no bossing me around in my home, i.e. "Get over there and help your mother" while I am attending to something else, like disciplining my child or setting the table.

There will be no "correcting" my recipes as you sit with your feet under my table and eat the food I purchased and prepared.

There will be no complaints about the arrangements I've made AT THE LAST MINUTE to host your family holiday, i.e., how the coffee pot is set up or the tables are arranged. If you don't like it, try giving me more than a few days notice that I'm hosting a huge meal.

There will be no "correcting" my abilities as a hostess by deciding that I have not thought of some random, unnecessary gesture. Example: the (very welcome) relative who dropped by to visit, with no intention of staying for dinner had someone fixing a full Thanksgiving meal for them at their home. There was no reason to hop up and DEMAND that I fetch you a plate so YOU could fix this relative a to-go plate. (implying of course, that I'm a bad hostess for not thinking of such a thing.) For one, I was setting up the meal you were about to consume, I had other things to do besides fetch you a plate. And two, this relative already had a full meal waiting for them at home. Why would I give them more food, taking away from what I was serving my own guests?

I AM A GROWN WOMAN. YOU WILL NOT TREAT ME LIKE A CHILD WHILE EXPECTING ME TO FULFILL ADULT RESPONSIBILITIES.

(Ahem.)

If you don't like the way I host things, you are more than welcome to host at your home.

(Why, yes, I DID have to have a couple of "Come to Deity" talks with some people this weekend. How did you know?)
« Last Edit: December 02, 2014, 08:22:31 AM by weeblewobble »

Luci

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #1381 on: December 02, 2014, 08:45:10 AM »
... you will let me host it.

...

I AM A GROWN WOMAN. YOU WILL NOT TREAT ME LIKE A CHILD WHILE EXPECTING ME TO FULFILL ADULT RESPONSIBILITIES.

(Ahem.)

...

You should print this and put it in front of your hostessing journal/holiday recipe book! I may!

I hope you remember this stiff backbone and how you feel now..

I have a sisIL 5 years older than I am, which was significant in 1966. Not so much now. She still tries to give me suggestions despite her not having hosted the family since Thanksgiving of 1968 and my doing it twice a year for 40 years. The others have died. I usually just say, "Uh-huh, Yeah" and go on to stew later.

Chipmunky

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #1382 on: December 02, 2014, 09:30:21 AM »
My new hill to die on- we will not be watching/ignoring but claim to be listening to overly loud, sci-fi and historical fiction films involving war, rape, and other crimes against humanity before or during dinner! (this also appears in the Special Snowflake thread).

Last Christmas, it was films about the destruction/rape of Nanking during WWII. This Thanksgiving, Dad's insistence on letting 2001 Space Odessy play on the tv at top volume had my mother and I running for the kitchen every time some unfamiliar beep or buzz occurred. NO MORE!

I might just put the TV on some endless loop of instrumental Christmas music....and hide all the remotes.

Jloreli

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #1383 on: December 02, 2014, 10:41:47 AM »
Chipmunky in order to stop either DH watching random re-runs of whatever or the teens/pre-teens from taking over the TV and veggie the whole day, that's pretty much what I did last year. My cable provider's package includes some streaming music channels and one was the "crackling fire" with holiday music. So I set the TV to that and put the remote in the drawer. Not a peep of protest out of anyone including DH. Later after gifts and dinner we put on a movie in the back ground during desserts for the younger folks but not so loud that people couldn't chat. Win! I know that had I tried to leave the darn TV off altogether someone would have tried to turn it on and then the battle of what should be playing would have begun.

jedikaiti

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #1384 on: December 02, 2014, 12:42:23 PM »
So, how did those "come to diety" chats go, weeble? Sounds like some folks don't know the meaning of gratitude...
What part of v_e = \sqrt{\frac{2GM}{r}} don't you understand? It's only rocket science!

"The problem with re-examining your brilliant ideas is that more often than not, you discover they are the intellectual equivalent of saying, 'Hold my beer and watch this!'" - Cindy Couture

weeblewobble

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #1385 on: December 02, 2014, 01:03:46 PM »
Jedikaiti, the one with the relative who was guilty of a lot of the issues at the inlaw dinner went a little like this:

"Just so you know (correction of the way I was doing something.)"

"OK, just so you know, I didn't have to agree to host this dinner at my home. If you disagree so strongly with the way I am doing things, you are more than welcome to host next year. I will not be treated this way in my own home."

It did not go over well. She didn't know what I was talking about. She thought I was doing just fine. Why was I so sensitive?

I walked away. I probably wasn't very polite. but after the coffee pot comment, I literally had to leave the house for a "breathing break."

I had to sit down and tell my dad (the commander, who kept yelling at me like I was still eight years old), "I love you and I love having the family over for holidays. But you need to recognize that this is my home. I am an adult. You will speak to me like an adult, not a child. You do not command me to anything. I don't care how stressed you are or how busy/frantic the preparations are. If you think I should be doing something, particularly if you see that I am busy with something else, you can either do it yourself or ask me nicely.  Again, I am your child, but I am NOT CHRONOLOGICALLY A CHILD."

He took it better than I thought it would. He said he was sorry.

I also had to talk to DH about being a little more observant with "problem relatives" and intervening. I intervene when it's my family's being jerks.

 
« Last Edit: December 02, 2014, 01:06:31 PM by weeblewobble »

LadyR

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #1386 on: December 02, 2014, 02:08:14 PM »
Spending Christmas Eve at home is my hill to die on.

We are fine with driving 2.5 hours on Christmas morning, but we are determined our kids will get to wake up and see what Santa brought them.

It actually came up this year since my ILs are getting together for Christmas Eve and then doing individual Christmas lunches, but I politely stated we couldn't make it and that we would be there for Christmas desert (which is when everyone is getting together again). No one complained, which is good, and we were actually invited to join SIL for Christmas lunch so we'll do that.


Bast

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #1387 on: December 02, 2014, 05:27:38 PM »
When I can't eat the food provided, can't participate in the conversations, and have no say in what happens at various and sundry holiday celebrations that tend to drag on for 5+ hours...nobody has the right to get upset when I choose to work.  Because there I can eat the food that I bring, if I don't like the conversation nobody gets upset if I change the subject or bow out, and there I'm used to not knowing what the day will bring.

It's a new thing, but Thanksgiving felt so much better overall and I'm looking forward to Christmas.  A holiday that I don't even like to celebrate but do because it's tradition.
"They may forget your name but they will never forget how you made them feel." ~Maya Angelou

TootsNYC

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #1388 on: December 02, 2014, 10:15:25 PM »
I've been the church organist for 12 years. And only twice (I think...maybe only once) in that time have I arranged for someone else to play at Christmas (my parents' anniversary was on the 28th, and for their 50th, my mother asked 2 years in advance--plenty of warning--to have all her progeny in her home for Christmas).

This year, my dad had cancer surgery, so we're hyper aware that we could lose him. And he's lonely without my mom; being sick and covering hasn't helped. I suddenly got free days off at Christmas.

I couldn't bring myself to quit before Christmas (we'll fly the next day for 5 days), but I gave notice, and this will be the last Christmas in a while that I will be "working" on the Eve and the Day. I'm hoping Dad will last awhile and next year we'll be there for Christmas Day.

Oh, and at first I thought we'd fly in Christmas Day itself to save money (4 of us!!). I told DH we should let his parents know, bcs we're always with them (and my MIL "owns" Christmas).
He called to tell his dad, and then he said "I'm sorry."
    *That* was a hill for me. I got really mad. I'm not going to bleeping -apologize- for going to spend Christmas with my dad! They get us every blasted year. We almost never fight--but I started that one.

And I heard from my sister-in-love that MIL had called her to ask if they'd be at her place for Xmas, but this is the year they go to Sis-in-love's family. No, they were not going to change their plans. Her mother has been ill as well, and they only get to see each other 2x a year, if that. "Why am I even bothering," his mother said.
   It's a good thing she never said that where I could hear it. I don't have any patience for that. My own mother went years--years--years without having any of her children around her for the holidays (Dad too, of course). And she and Dad didn't get to see us much during the year either. My MIL sees us 2 to 3 times a month. And at -all- the holidays.

But I can't complain too much--they gave us our Xmas present early, and the cash is making it possible for us to fly the next day after all, which will be what the kids will prefer. I think my dad is a bit disappointed; he'd thought we'd be there for Christmas, but I pointed out--this is my last year on the organ.


(I probably should have quit effective just before, and been there for the day of. But my sis can come on the weekend after, which will be extra nice, so that's a big part of why we decided to go the day after.)

poundcake

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #1389 on: December 03, 2014, 03:13:15 AM »
weeble, good on you for your shiny spine. It wasn't holiday-related, but I had to have a similar conversation with my mother like you did with your dad once. "I have lived in my own home for fifteen years. I know how to load my dishwasher, put away pans, fix a meal, clean the bathroom, fold my laundry, and feed our cats. Do not comment, complain, or try to change the way I do those things. Just because I don't do them the way you do doesn't make it wrong." I had to reiterate for the holiday version with my mom's habit of bolting down her Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner in 10 minutes, then rushing to start clearing the table, washing dishes, and cleaning the kitchen. Often, my Spouse and I haven't even finished bringing all of the food out to serve (like a post-salad hot dish still in the oven 'til the last minute, or fresh bread) before she would be up and cleaning the kitchen. That turned into a "Sit down, and stay out of our kitchen unless you have been invited to help. What you're doing isn't helping, it's making everyone else uncomfortable." She's gotten really PA about both of these things, but at least she has stopped feeding my cats and interrupting meals to go clean the kitchen.

Quote
Last Christmas, it was films about the destruction/rape of Nanking during WWII. This Thanksgiving, Dad's insistence on letting 2001 Space Odessy play on the tv at top volume had my mother and I running for the kitchen every time some unfamiliar beep or buzz occurred. NO MORE!

I might just put the TV on some endless loop of instrumental Christmas music....and hide all the remotes.

I also come from a family where TV is on all the time, every day. That didn't change for a holiday meal. "Oh, but it's the Christmas Story marathon!" "But the kids want to watch Disney!" In my home, the music is on, the TV is off, and the remotes are hidden. If someone asks, my answer is "No, we're not watching TV or movies today" and I point out that it's too much trouble to clear away the seating area set up for holiday nibbles instead of TV watching.  >:D If you want to watch TV, stay at home and watch TV.

Venus193

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #1390 on: December 03, 2014, 05:54:28 AM »
Last year on either Christmas or Thanksgiving my friend had the TV on to a marathon of The Incredible Dr. Pol.  Now, I love animals as much as she does but I don't want to see graphic operations during a meal or cry because he has to put an animal down.  This year I made up my mind that if I couldn't get her to change the channel I would leave.

Thus, when something happened on the program that could have caused me to lose my appetite I said "Couldn't we put on something funny instead?" and her sister agreed with me.  The channel was changed.





artk2002

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #1391 on: December 03, 2014, 12:22:21 PM »
He called to tell his dad, and then he said "I'm sorry."
    *That* was a hill for me. I got really mad. I'm not going to bleeping -apologize- for going to spend Christmas with my dad! They get us every blasted year. We almost never fight--but I started that one.

If it helps, remember that "I'm sorry" has any number of meanings, where apologizing is only one of them. It's often used as a substitute for "It's regrettable..." Or in this case it may be "I apologize that this is going to hurt you." I don't really see anything wrong with saying that to his parents. It is likely to hurt them and he can and should be able to express sympathy and regret. The phrase doesn't always mean that you've done something wrong.
Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bow lines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.

TootsNYC

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #1392 on: December 03, 2014, 12:28:26 PM »
Frankly, I'm not OK w/ apologizing for having hurt them by going to visit my dad. I reject the idea that they have a right to be hurt by our not being there bcs we're visiting my parents. If it happens to, they can keep it to themselves.

Also, DH volunteered it without there being time for his dad to have said anything; and I have a hard time believing his dad would say something to trigger it. I can't imagine his dad would say, "We'll be upset." I wasn't happy that DH would volunteer an apology.

And yeah, I'll admit, I'm a bit hair-trigger reactionary on this.

greencat

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #1393 on: December 03, 2014, 12:54:08 PM »
Frankly, I'm not OK w/ apologizing for having hurt them by going to visit my dad. I reject the idea that they have a right to be hurt by our not being there bcs we're visiting my parents. If it happens to, they can keep it to themselves.

Also, DH volunteered it without there being time for his dad to have said anything; and I have a hard time believing his dad would say something to trigger it. I can't imagine his dad would say, "We'll be upset." I wasn't happy that DH would volunteer an apology.

And yeah, I'll admit, I'm a bit hair-trigger reactionary on this.

Toots, "I'm sorry" is etiquette lubricant. It's not always an apology for something you've done or will be doing.  I believe you are not just overreacting, but entirely misinterpreting what your husband was saying to his father, especially since your husband started out with the phrase rather than reacting to something his father said with it.

Here are some alternative and more likely ways to interpret what your husband was saying with "I'm sorry" rather than "I know you're going to be hurt by this and I apologize for it,"
"I will miss joining you for this holiday because you are my parents and I love you."
"I feel a bit bad that we are doing something different than what we usually plan and I'm telling you less than a month in advance."
"I don't feel comfortable having this conversation."

And of course his parents, who are accustomed to your presence at the holidays, have the right to want your family there and miss you if you aren't.

gingerzing

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #1394 on: December 03, 2014, 01:01:45 PM »
Well, hello new Thanksgiving hill.  What a pleasant surprise. 
Actually, I sort of figured this was coming, but whoa. 

So this last spring my cousin (early 30's) begged my mother to host this year's Thanksgiving and do it as a multicourse tapas meal.  Cuz had missed the two Thanksgivings that my mom had done this before.  In the last 10 years, Mom has now done this multicourse thing twice before. so this made it the third time. 
After much begging (not whining type), finally my mother relented -  partly because DH and I figured out that we could come down for the holiday this year.  (He works in healthcare and usually can only get Thanksgiving off every other year.) We hammered out the 20 course meal plan* later that summer.

We were suppose to have 12 people come.  We only had 7.  A couple friends and their daughter had to back out for a family matter about a month before, one other backed out the week before for a weird non-reason  (just didn't wanna, apparently), and one friend had a major surgery get shifted to earlier that week. Added bonus, Mom needed to be with her friend for the surgery (multiple reasons).   

So over my vacation, I spent 3 days prepping and cooking about 2/3 of the meal*.  SIGH. The only upshot was that I had convinced the others that we didn't need to make another apple/quince tart this year.  (Quinces are a pain to work with and I refuse.)
 Other grumbly stuff happened, and we ended up skipping about 5 of the last courses...   

We WILL NOT be doing any more multicourse, multiple place setting meals. At all.  No puppy dog eyes will change it.  Just not gonna happen. 



*Meal scheduled to start at 1 (we did start without Cuz since she found out late that she had to work until 2 which was fine, she and her hubby only missed the first set of courses.)  So basically ate small plate style with a break halfway through from 1PM until about 7PM.  ESH. 
And yes, Cuz did bring three dishes and my aunt brought three salads. And my mother baked breads and did a couple dishes before had.  But still there was much that had to wait until the day before or the day of to cook.
« Last Edit: December 03, 2014, 01:10:52 PM by gingerzing »