Author Topic: Your holiday hill to die on.  (Read 222129 times)

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LadyJaneinMD

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #165 on: November 22, 2011, 09:04:08 AM »
My hill happened one memorable year at my sister's house.  She was working, so she asked me to cook at her place.  I had no problem with that, except that I found out that I didn't know where anything was.  However, the food got cooked and we started putting it on the table. (she was home by now)

Meanwhile, throughout this process, we had a big bunch of noisy, talking, nonhelpful family in the house, getting underfoot and in the way.  Someone who I thought was helping me, disappeared and left me with the bulk of the work.  When we started putting food on the table, I thought it was going to be one way, they were doing it another way, and my sister said the Dreaded Words 'You sound just like Mom'.
(Just so you know, that's the biggest insult we could possibly say to each other).  So we all sat down, and I was already hot, tired, frustrated, and unhappy. 

I didn't want to make a scene in front of my toddler nieces, and I couldn't just leave because I had brought a friend with me and didn't want to drag him out before dinner (He didn't drive and this dinner was WAY out in the country).   And then, all during dinner, her BIL kept making jokes at my expense, causing everyone (except me) at the table to laugh. 

I had it.  I left shortly after, and cried all the way home.  That was the LAST time I ever cooked a holiday dinner for anyone but myself, or sat through an uncomfortable dinner voluntarily.  That was the day I coined the phrase "When the tradition becomes a burden, it's time to change the tradition".  I changed the tradition, and now I spend very happy holidays all by myself, at home.  Once in a great while I'll go to someone else's house, but I NEVER go without an exit strategy, and I'm not afraid to use it.

veryfluffy

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #166 on: November 22, 2011, 09:18:39 AM »
"When the tradition becomes a burden, it's time to change the tradition".  

Very wise words.
   

bopper

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #167 on: November 22, 2011, 03:40:34 PM »
My  holiday hill to die on was one Christmas Eve...

My stepmom would host Christmas Eve.  Our children were in the 8-10 year old range, I think.  Still kids, anyway.  She kept putting off the opening of presents...I think it was to "heighten the anticipation."  But what it really did was create some bored kids with nothing to do.  But then we finally started opening presents at 9:30pm they were tired and it was getting late and we still had an hour and a half drive still had "Santa Duties" of our own (putting out presents and what not). The next year I told her that her method was not working for us and we were going to be leaving at 10:00pm so she needed to plan for that.  She moved everything earlier and we have not had a problem since.

goldilocks

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #168 on: November 22, 2011, 05:43:30 PM »
Definitely gift exchange.  For years my mother would spend money she didn't have buying me things I didn't want.  At the same time my siblings are wearing ourselves out buying for each other, spouses and kids.  I finally woke up to her financial situation and put my foot down.   She is allowed to buy the grandchildren 2 present each, but nothing for myself and my siblings.  My brother sister and I do not exchange but we buy for the kids.  She complained to her sister that her Christmas was just miserable.  Aunt called me to bless me out and I replied, Really?  Christmas with her entire family together enjoying the day and a great meal was miserable? 

But I stood my ground.   I can't enjoy Christmas knowing she is running up credit cards over it, and it's wrong to think that Christmas is about how much money you spend.

Oh, and I threw DH into this as well.  Trying to buy him a gift every year was stressing me out to the point of affecting our marriage (and he apparently felt the same way) so he and I no longer exchange.   Last year I bought myself a Kindle, wrapped it up and put it under the tree, and I was delighted by my thoughtfulness!

Yvaine

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #169 on: November 22, 2011, 05:52:44 PM »
Some of you may know this store from elsewhere on the web (an in-laws board on iVillage)....

My FIL refuses to hire professionals to do any work on his house, on the assumption that all plumbers, electricians, carpenters, and other specialties are crooks who are out to cheat you by telling you that something is wrong when it really isn't it.  So, my ILs house is in deplorable condition after decades of FIL's half-a$$ed amateur repairs.  In particular, the house has a serious mold and mildew probelm, in large part because the roof has never been replaced (built in 1964, the house has its original roof with multiple layers of bad patch jobs).   One year, I ended up in Urgent Care the day after Thanksgiving and the day after Christmas because of an allergic reaction to all the mold in the house.  In particular, I develped an allergic reaction called atopic dermatitis which is a weeping rash. I then developed a secondary bacterial infection in the rash. 

The ILs' attitude ranged from "there's no mold problem here" to treating me like the heroine in "The Princess and the Pea".  ("Well, maybe there's a teeny little bit of mold, but the only reason that it brothers you is because you're such a high-maintenance princess.")

So, my hill was that I not have to attend events in that house.  It took about six months in marriage counseling to bring DH around to the point where he would stand up to his parents.

We did a couple of Thanksgivings and Christmases in restaurants, then when DH and I bought a house large enough to host everyone, we started holding things at our house.  Even at that, we still have to listen to FIL say that it just isn't Christmas if he can't open presents in his own home.  One year I smiled sweetly and told him he was welcome to cart his presents home and do so if he wanted.

You're married to my brother? Hi SIL, fancy meeting you here!  ;D (Seriously, I could fill a whole forum with tales of my dad's bad repairs, crumbling house, and the resulting ailments that he insists are just every single person who ever visits being a SS.)

kherbert05

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #170 on: November 22, 2011, 06:39:36 PM »
Some of you may know this store from elsewhere on the web (an in-laws board on iVillage)....

My FIL refuses to hire professionals to do any work on his house, on the assumption that all plumbers, electricians, carpenters, and other specialties are crooks who are out to cheat you by telling you that something is wrong when it really isn't it.  So, my ILs house is in deplorable condition after decades of FIL's half-a$$ed amateur repairs.  In particular, the house has a serious mold and mildew probelm, in large part because the roof has never been replaced (built in 1964, the house has its original roof with multiple layers of bad patch jobs).   One year, I ended up in Urgent Care the day after Thanksgiving and the day after Christmas because of an allergic reaction to all the mold in the house.  In particular, I develped an allergic reaction called atopic dermatitis which is a weeping rash. I then developed a secondary bacterial infection in the rash. 

The ILs' attitude ranged from "there's no mold problem here" to treating me like the heroine in "The Princess and the Pea".  ("Well, maybe there's a teeny little bit of mold, but the only reason that it brothers you is because you're such a high-maintenance princess.")

So, my hill was that I not have to attend events in that house.  It took about six months in marriage counseling to bring DH around to the point where he would stand up to his parents.

We did a couple of Thanksgivings and Christmases in restaurants, then when DH and I bought a house large enough to host everyone, we started holding things at our house.  Even at that, we still have to listen to FIL say that it just isn't Christmas if he can't open presents in his own home.  One year I smiled sweetly and told him he was welcome to cart his presents home and do so if he wanted.

You could also mention that atopic dermatitis is also very painful and hard to get rid of.  (I had a horrible case of it all over my hands back in the nineties.  My dermatologist never did determine what was causing it, but it sort of abated on its own after a couple years, and now I only ever get a small patch of it, from time to time.)

Sorry you had to go through that, and I don't blame you a bit for not wanting to return to that house of horrors.  (Seriously. a roof from 1964?  I can't wrap my head around that number.)

WAIT - I've had both atopic and contact dermatitis for 40+ years.  No one ever told me you could "get rid of it" (I had my first outbreak less than an hour after I was born and have never been itch free for more than a month or so at a time.)
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hannahmollysmom

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #171 on: November 22, 2011, 06:46:24 PM »
I now have a small living room but had a huge artificial tree from the past. I set it up but left all the back side branches off. It was a 1/2 tree but you really couldn't tell and only stuck out a couple of feet. Did have to anchor it with wire to the window. But it worked well.

blue2000

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #172 on: November 22, 2011, 06:55:52 PM »
You could also mention that atopic dermatitis is also very painful and hard to get rid of.  (I had a horrible case of it all over my hands back in the nineties.  My dermatologist never did determine what was causing it, but it sort of abated on its own after a couple years, and now I only ever get a small patch of it, from time to time.)

Sorry you had to go through that, and I don't blame you a bit for not wanting to return to that house of horrors.  (Seriously. a roof from 1964?  I can't wrap my head around that number.)

WAIT - I've had both atopic and contact dermatitis for 40+ years.  No one ever told me you could "get rid of it" (I had my first outbreak less than an hour after I was born and have never been itch free for more than a month or so at a time.)

If you find out what is causing it (or contributing to it) you can sometimes get rid of it. If the answer is that you are allergic to everything... not so much. :( Mine still drives me bonkers no matter how many things I try.
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VorFemme

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #173 on: November 22, 2011, 07:23:10 PM »
I had a friend who realized that her father was "loosing it" when the retired banker bought a house with mold & mildew issues then tried to move his allergic, elderly wife and himself into it because he didn't recognize the smell & sight of the mold & mildew as stuff that his wife was highly allergic to.

She had to put them up in temporary quarters while getting the place deep cleaned (apprently being shut up was 90% of the issue - replacing the carpet & padding, priming, and repainting did wonders).  But she's had to get her sister and brother in on rotation to help with them because her husband had to move his parents close to them as his brother's health was poor enough that her BIL could not help.

The icing on that cupcake was that her ILs had never accepted her even though they'd been married thirty years and had three kids.................but are now living across the street from her so she can keep an eye on them (works from home).
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Auntie Mame

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #174 on: November 22, 2011, 08:00:37 PM »
Definitely gift exchange.  For years my mother would spend money she didn't have buying me things I didn't want. 

I have a sister?   ;)

Seriously though, how did you get your mom to stop.  I've been trying for years to stop the endless flow of rubbish she buys for the daughter shwants, not the one she has.
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furrcats

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #175 on: November 22, 2011, 10:07:28 PM »
I'm another one who refuses to see Mom over the holidays or any other time.  We live 1000 miles apart and I have cats so I always have an excuse for not going out to see her.

Sometimes cats are the better people  ;D

Much better people!  ;D

SCAJAfamily

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #176 on: November 22, 2011, 10:16:09 PM »
We went to the ILs for Christmas eve and day for a few years.  The last year was when C was 2.  There were 12 of us opening presents together (the 4 of us, SIL and husband, MIL and FIL, dh's grandparents).  It took over 4 hours to open presents.  All C wanted to do was play with his toys.  He had a complete meltdown.

After that I told dh that we need to stay home Christmas morning and open presents as a core family.  Just the 4 (and later 5) of us.  And that is what we do.  We go to my parents for dinner (they are 15 minutes away) and then drive the 2 hrs to dh's family the day after.  It has been that way for 10 years now and we are happy.
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bluhairfreak

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #177 on: November 22, 2011, 10:41:07 PM »
We went to the ILs for Christmas eve and day for a few years.  The last year was when C was 2.  There were 12 of us opening presents together (the 4 of us, SIL and husband, MIL and FIL, dh's grandparents).  It took over 4 hours to open presents.  All C wanted to do was play with his toys.  He had a complete meltdown.

After that I told dh that we need to stay home Christmas morning and open presents as a core family.  Just the 4 (and later 5) of us.  And that is what we do.  We go to my parents for dinner (they are 15 minutes away) and then drive the 2 hrs to dh's family the day after.  It has been that way for 10 years now and we are happy.

4 hours opening presents?   :o  At my grandfather's house there can be 15-19 people opening presents(depends on if my brother's family is there or not) and I don't think gift exchange has ever gone taken even two hours. 

The Wild One, Forever

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #178 on: November 22, 2011, 10:43:18 PM »
Some of you may know this store from elsewhere on the web (an in-laws board on iVillage)....

My FIL refuses to hire professionals to do any work on his house, on the assumption that all plumbers, electricians, carpenters, and other specialties are crooks who are out to cheat you by telling you that something is wrong when it really isn't it.  So, my ILs house is in deplorable condition after decades of FIL's half-a$$ed amateur repairs.  In particular, the house has a serious mold and mildew probelm, in large part because the roof has never been replaced (built in 1964, the house has its original roof with multiple layers of bad patch jobs).   One year, I ended up in Urgent Care the day after Thanksgiving and the day after Christmas because of an allergic reaction to all the mold in the house.  In particular, I develped an allergic reaction called atopic dermatitis which is a weeping rash. I then developed a secondary bacterial infection in the rash. 

The ILs' attitude ranged from "there's no mold problem here" to treating me like the heroine in "The Princess and the Pea".  ("Well, maybe there's a teeny little bit of mold, but the only reason that it brothers you is because you're such a high-maintenance princess.")

So, my hill was that I not have to attend events in that house.  It took about six months in marriage counseling to bring DH around to the point where he would stand up to his parents.

We did a couple of Thanksgivings and Christmases in restaurants, then when DH and I bought a house large enough to host everyone, we started holding things at our house.  Even at that, we still have to listen to FIL say that it just isn't Christmas if he can't open presents in his own home.  One year I smiled sweetly and told him he was welcome to cart his presents home and do so if he wanted.

You could also mention that atopic dermatitis is also very painful and hard to get rid of.  (I had a horrible case of it all over my hands back in the nineties.  My dermatologist never did determine what was causing it, but it sort of abated on its own after a couple years, and now I only ever get a small patch of it, from time to time.)

Sorry you had to go through that, and I don't blame you a bit for not wanting to return to that house of horrors.  (Seriously. a roof from 1964?  I can't wrap my head around that number.)

WAIT - I've had both atopic and contact dermatitis for 40+ years.  No one ever told me you could "get rid of it" (I had my first outbreak less than an hour after I was born and have never been itch free for more than a month or so at a time.)

Mine has never 100% gone away, not completely, but I do only ever get small patches of it now and again.  There were years there in which both my hands were a mess.  I never found out what caused it, but I have a few clues. 
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goldilocks

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Re: Your holiday hill to die on.
« Reply #179 on: November 23, 2011, 09:33:36 AM »
Definitely gift exchange.  For years my mother would spend money she didn't have buying me things I didn't want. 

I have a sister?   ;)

Seriously though, how did you get your mom to stop.  I've been trying for years to stop the endless flow of rubbish she buys for the daughter shwants, not the one she has.

fortunately, my brother and sister backed me up.  We found out my mother was in serious, serious, financial trouble and that opened all our eyes.   Christmas had become more of a stress than a joy.  You know, the old, "I  have to get something for Uncle Joe even though he has everything and I have no idea what he wants well I'll just buy something"!

Dont get me wrong - I love giving gifts if I know it's something the recepient will truly love.   I just don't like wasting money buying something that I'm not sure they'll care for, just because I HAVE to get them something.