Posted by: thewoobdog | November 28, 2012

In Which Nothing Happens

Sorry, I’ve neglected the blog.  See, I was on vacation, and then there was Thanksgiving, and everything I want to blog about I can’t because it’s super-secret Christmas stuff, which leaves me with the stuff I either wanted to blog about but don’t remember or don’t want to blog about because it’s boring. 

I’d’ve blogged on vacation but it wasn’t one of those vacations where you have lots of relaxation time – we walked 42 miles, tramping all over Disney and Universal and doing many blogworthy things, but now that we’re back it’s just too daunting to try to go back and recreate the blogs-that-might-have-been.  Thanksgiving was a whirlwind and I don’t really feel like blogging about it, either – holidays have become so complicated because we have so much family that is so close and we spend all our time trying to make everybody happy and not succeeding.  Family is wonderful and I’m so glad we have an abundance of family – my complaint is not family, it’s just an awareness that there has to be a better way to do this and we just haven’t found it yet. 

If our house were bigger, we could just have a big gathering of everybody from both sides, but our house is only big enough to have either my husband’s immediate family or my immediate family (and that one’s a stretch) over during the cold months (we have our deck and patio set up in such a way that we can entertain lots of people outside, but there’s only so much space inside).  We actually tossed around the idea of renting a banquet hall for Thanksgiving next year and just having the whole horde gather together in one place at one time, but I’m not sure how it would work logistically with payment and setup and prep and cleanup… Still, it’s definitely on our radar as a future possibility, especially since we were all set to host Thanksgiving for my husband’s side of the family this year and had to bow out because my husband’s sister’s husband’s family joined up at the last minute and we ran out of space.  I hate that – I would have loved to have been able to have everyone over, we just couldn’t do it (our table seats six, and only six, and there’s literally nowhere to expand to unless we move all of our living room furniture out on the lawn).  We ended up going over to my sister-and-brother-in-law’s for Thanksgiving dinner, which was nice (and we got to see their new house and their new puppy!), but due to timing issues we didn’t really get to see my side of the family (a mixed blessing, since my parents’ dog got skunked the night before, LOL).  Still, I felt bad about not getting to spend time with my aunt and uncle, who were in from out of town and who we hadn’t seen in about a year.  We had planned to have them up for dinner the day after Thanksgiving, but my aunt got a stomach bug and was out of commission pretty much the whole rest of their visit.

Everybody has holiday traditions, so the struggle is to keep the reason for the holiday in mind and create traditions as a couple that somehow manage to combine two lives attached to two different families and numerous familial offshoots.  Because our families are so close, geographically speaking, we end up rushing around on the holidays trying to spend quality time with both sides and we lose ourselves in the process – last Christmas, for example, we didn’t get to spend a quiet moment together exchanging our gifts as a couple until 11:00 pm.  We’re trying to set boundaries but it’s difficult to do without hurting feelings and causing drama, which is certainly not our intent but is somehow inevitable.  I just wish people would realize that the reason we do try to set boundaries and compromise on holiday scheduling is because we’re trying to spend quality time with them, not because we’re trying to avoid them, but we do have lots of family that we are trying to see and spend time with during the holidays so it’s impossible to spend the whole day with one side or the other. 

See?  This is why I haven’t blogged.  All the stuff that’s not super-secret Christmas stuff is convoluted and no fun.  I’m not bitter or resentful or angry, I’m just trying to work through all this in my head and come up with a reasonable, workable solution that doesn’t make my husband and I hate the holidays.  (And it’s not just me trying to work it out – I’m not ‘in control’ of our marriage, we are partners and we work through this stuff together.  I only say “I” because this is my blog and I’m writing this right now and this is what’s on my mind.)  We haven’t ever actually managed a workable compromise for a single holiday with all and sundry over the past 6 years but I stubbornly cling to hope and keep reminding myself that family is a good thing and a blessing and we will work through this.

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