This should be interesting.

December 22, 2008

My mother is arriving tomorrow to spend almost a week with us.  I am a little nervous.

There was a bit of a blow up last year around holiday travel (namely, that I had been expected to do it all), and I declared that I would not be flying home (or to see RB’s family) for Xmas ’08.  I didn’t know if she would come to see us or not, but I had resolved to stay in my own home, and have my own Christmas.  I don’t regret it.  Yet.

This is the first time since I-don’t-know-when that she hasn’t been hosting Christmas in her home, and when I talked to her this morning, I could hear in her voice that she’s stressed by the last minute packing and prepping.  While I honestly don’t want her to be miserable, there is a itty-wee part of me that is glad 1) because it’s not me again and 2) because maybe now she’ll really get what I was talking about a year ago–the stress and expense of travel, the uprooting of one’s schedule, the having to balance time with various parts of your family.    It’s a total PITA, and I know it.  I did it for more than 10 years, and I think, until last year, she assumed I’d keep doing it until…one of us died, I guess.

But no.  Mom is descending tomorrow afternoon, and there’s tons to be done before then:  more shopping (she is not helpful when it comes to gift ideas:  “oh, I don’t need anything…”), laying in of Mom-specific and X-mas specific groceries (caffeine-free Diet Coke and buttermilk, for example), gift-wrapping, last minute cleaning, hiding of non-Mom-approved things…So I shouldn’t be blogging, but it’s an outlet for my agita.

RB, having finished his semester, has shifted into full-time holiday panic mode (I expect his annual Christmas-themed nightmares to return tonight), which, quite frankly, make him really un-fun to be around.  Example:  he went to the post office at lunch, and, distracted by incoming packages and other necessary errands, forgot to mail a special card to his grandparents, which necessitated a phone call to me, wherein he pissed and moaned loudly about how much time he’d wasted the previous night on the Xmas letters we won’t get out before the holiday (which, at the time, were Of Major Importance), and also their package is going to be late!!!  He hasn’t even wrapped it yet!!!   Et cetera!!!

He swears he luuuuuuuuuuuuvvvvs Christmas, but I think he must mean he loves cookies and pretty wrapping paper and giving his loved ones nice things, because it’s pretty clear that “Christmas” (if by that we mean the 3-4 week season leading up to the big day) makes him stressed and miserable. 

Which, combined with my own less-than-Rankin/Bass-ready sentiments this year, promise to make for a possibly craptacular week.  Fingers crossed, and if not, there’s always this tree:



  1. just wanted to say I lol’d at this one…I think RB and I have a great deal in common, re: pre-Xmas tumult…except I don’t manage to get anything done. doesn’t stop me from freaking out about it, though.

  2. I will think of you ensconced in your own home fondly as the Schluetermetz manage to do the same–to celebrate our little atheist secular christmas for the first time EVAH w/o dragging our asses to MO (minus, of course, last year when Stinky’s family came to visit us in OH and his brother in law refused to leave the hotel the entire time. so that was superb.) So far, this holiday has not involved any tantrums (mine included), vomiting, or anyone hissing the words “I hate my/your mother” as pillow talk while we attempt to sleep on a shitty fold out couch and/or a shitty air mattress. A definite step up. We might just make this a habit.

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