Author Topic: After Christmas Party, and Supplying Everything. UPDATE post 81  (Read 14378 times)

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Nikko-chan

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After Christmas Party, and Supplying Everything. UPDATE post 81
« on: December 19, 2012, 08:38:26 PM »
Background: It is tradition on my side of the family to have the Feast of the Seven Fishes on Christmas Eve, and then the next day, one of my Aunts hosts Christmas.

This year we are having an After Christmas party on the 29th with everyone. I am talking extended family here. All of my older cousins on my mom's side of her generation that I havent seen since... well, since another family member's funeral a few years ago, I think.

At any rate, we are having this After Holiday party because this will be one of my Great-Aunts last Christmases.

I was really okay with that. No etiquette dilemma so far. Until my mom was contacted this evening.

Apparently we (that is the family as a whole, including the extended cousins and what not) are funding this whole thing. We weren't asked, oh no. We were ordered. My Aunt (mom's sister) called her tonight, and was contacted by Cousin J. Cousin J is the daughter of the Great Aunt who is dying.

Cousin J said that everyone in mom's generation must bring a meat and that all of the kids (includes me and my five cousins) must each bring a side dish.

There is no way in ehell. There are a few reasons for that. One, we don't have it. Just plain don't have the money. Two, I don't feel it is our obligation to help them throw a party. I have a feeling mom is just going to go along with it, but this is my hill to die on.

So ehellions, besides 'That won't be possible.' What can I say to these people?
« Last Edit: December 21, 2012, 12:00:20 AM by Nikko-chan »

mj

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Re: After Christmas Party, and Supplying Everything.
« Reply #1 on: December 19, 2012, 08:53:18 PM »
You can't bring a side dish?

Veronica

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Re: After Christmas Party, and Supplying Everything.
« Reply #2 on: December 19, 2012, 08:56:37 PM »
I may be lost by the timeline but it sounds like a potluck.  Who do you feel should pay for everything?  You can't afford to make a big side dish?

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Veronica

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Re: After Christmas Party, and Supplying Everything.
« Reply #3 on: December 19, 2012, 08:59:51 PM »
If you truly can't make it, "We have other plans."

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jibby

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Re: After Christmas Party, and Supplying Everything.
« Reply #4 on: December 19, 2012, 09:10:10 PM »
This sounds more like a potluck family reunion style event. I've never been to a reunion that was hosted by one person. Is that the norm in your family?  Anyway, I've had to feed a family of three on $100 per month. I made things like mashed potatoes, rice pilaf, bean salad for potlucks. Things made from cheap staples and seasonings I already had on hand. But if even that won't work, just apologize and say you can't make it and wish you could.

bbgirl

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Re: After Christmas Party, and Supplying Everything.
« Reply #5 on: December 19, 2012, 09:13:08 PM »
So instead of one family funding the whole shebang for the entire family (which would cost big buckage sounds like based on the numbers in your family), they've asked everyone to chip in to make it happen?  Isn't that a potluck? And why would something that's a fairly normal way of approaching family gatherings be your hill to die on?  Get some cucumbers and onions and a little olive oil and vinegar, and bam...cheap cucumber salad under 5 dollars.  Really....I don't get what the issue is...

Shoo

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Re: After Christmas Party, and Supplying Everything.
« Reply #6 on: December 19, 2012, 09:14:47 PM »
I am confused too.  It sounds like a potluck.  If taking a side dish is too much for you, you can always not attend.  But really, I think you should find a way to put together a potato salad or something and go, for your dying aunt's sake.

Nikko-chan

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Re: After Christmas Party, and Supplying Everything.
« Reply #7 on: December 19, 2012, 09:19:58 PM »
That's the odd thing. We didn't know it was potluck until tonight. Aunt didn't even know until she was contacted by cousin J. I am unemployed, so I don't have any money. I don't understand why it is this big to do either. Everyone bringing meat and a side dish.

Why we can't get together for a few hours and visit aunt I will never know.

Veronica, when i said that about supplying everything, I meant extended family as a whole, including my own little family unit of mom and me.

We have been ordered essentially by Cousin J, though it came through my aunt who was passing on the message, that mom must bring meat and I MUST make a side dish.

It isn't really a reunion, more like an after holiday holiday party I guess? I am not really clear on the details, just that we are having it so that we can see Great Aunt on her last Christmas.

I just know that if i make a side dish i will be taking food out of my mom and me and I am not willing to do that. As it is, mom is probably going to spend money she doesn't have, bringing meat to the party.



wendelenn

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Re: After Christmas Party, and Supplying Everything.
« Reply #8 on: December 19, 2012, 09:34:01 PM »
I just know that if i make a side dish i will be taking food out of my mom and me and I am not willing to do that. As it is, mom is probably going to spend money she doesn't have, bringing meat to the party.

I can see the part about your mom not wanting to bring meat. But surely the cost of a small side dish isn't much when you'd have to eat anyway, and you'd be getting a good meal in exchange? After all, you'd still have to spend some money on your mom's and your meal even if it was at home.

"I don't mean to be rude", he began, in a tone that threatened rudeness in every syllable.

"--yet sadly, accidental rudeness occurs alarmingly often," Dumbledore finished the sentence gravely.  "Best to say nothing at all."

katycoo

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Re: After Christmas Party, and Supplying Everything.
« Reply #9 on: December 19, 2012, 09:53:36 PM »
I just know that if i make a side dish i will be taking food out of my mom and me and I am not willing to do that. As it is, mom is probably going to spend money she doesn't have, bringing meat to the party.

I can see the part about your mom not wanting to bring meat. But surely the cost of a small side dish isn't much when you'd have to eat anyway, and you'd be getting a good meal in exchange? After all, you'd still have to spend some money on your mom's and your meal even if it was at home.


This.

Or, if money is SO tight that its not possible, can you not call cousin and explain the situation?

johelenc1

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Re: After Christmas Party, and Supplying Everything.
« Reply #10 on: December 19, 2012, 09:55:57 PM »
There's nothing cheaper than a big bowl of rice.  That's a side dish in my house.

Think of it this way...you are getting a really good meal with all the trimmings in exchange for rice.

As for the meat dish...if your mom can't afford to make it - then she shouldn't.  If she feels she must - one roll of sausage, rice, frozen brocolli, and a cheese if you can.  Cook each separately - (except the cheese) mix all together, bake until bubbly...yummy.

Nikko-chan

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Re: After Christmas Party, and Supplying Everything.
« Reply #11 on: December 19, 2012, 10:04:39 PM »
that would work johelenc, except that when they mean meat they mean like a whole ham or chicken or whatever. My uncle even suggested us all going in on a big roast beef. But my mom is still wondering where she's going to get the money for this. Oi... if we would have known in advance we could have budgeted!

katycoo

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Re: After Christmas Party, and Supplying Everything.
« Reply #12 on: December 19, 2012, 10:08:53 PM »
that would work johelenc, except that when they mean meat they mean like a whole ham or chicken or whatever. My uncle even suggested us all going in on a big roast beef. But my mom is still wondering where she's going to get the money for this. Oi... if we would have known in advance we could have budgeted!

I still don't understand why she didn't say that at the time?  Or call him and tell him now?  There are 4 options here, only 1 of which is 'work it out'.  The others are:

1. Call uncle, say you can't bring the requested item due to finances.  Can you bring something else such as xxx?

2. Call uncle, say you can't bring anything, as you are too broke.  Is that ok?

3. Call uncle, say you can't attend.

CaptainObvious

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Re: After Christmas Party, and Supplying Everything.
« Reply #13 on: December 19, 2012, 10:12:54 PM »
that would work johelenc, except that when they mean meat they mean like a whole ham or chicken or whatever. My uncle even suggested us all going in on a big roast beef. But my mom is still wondering where she's going to get the money for this. Oi... if we would have known in advance we could have budgeted!

How many siblings are there? I can't imagine having 4 hams, 3 chickens, ect. If you can't contribute, just decline. This is how my family does holiday dinners, so to me, it isn't unusual.

doodlemor

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Re: After Christmas Party, and Supplying Everything.
« Reply #14 on: December 19, 2012, 11:15:27 PM »
I'm sorry that this unexpected expense has come into your life.  It's understandable that you were startled by the call, since times are hard right now.

I think that you need to be honest with your uncle - mom can't afford to go in on beef.  She doesn't have the money.  Period.

I don't know where you live, and what the prices are.  Around here Wegman's has large chickens for 99 cents a pound, so a large chicken might be more manageable than other things.  Mom could also get a smaller chicken, stew it up, make gravy from the broth, put the meat into the gravy, and the size of the bird wouldn't be so readily apparent.

As far as side dishes go, perhaps you could find a special on potatoes in your area, and just cook them and mash them up.  By the 29th people will have eaten a lot of rich foods, and some plain potatoes would probably be very welcome.

I like the rice idea, too.  You could add a can of beans and some sauteed onion and some spices and have a tasty side dish that is quite hearty.  Something that starts out with a bag of dried beans should be relatively inexpensive, too.

Maybe there is a side dish that you could make with flour and a few eggs, like dumplings or spaetzle.