Tried to Skip Christmas, Didn’t Happen

Yes, I’ve turned into one of those cranky old ladies who can’t be bothered with holidays.

Heck, my kids are all grown and on their own, and they’ll be spending the holidays with their significant others and families, so why would I decorate my own house if no one’s coming to visit?  Too much work.  Putting the decorations up is ok – a little music, a little laughter, a tiny feast – after all Christmas in on the way!  But taking the stuff down after the holidays can be a chore, especially for those of us who must return to a regular work schedule.

Along the same line, I’ve given up holiday baking.  My girls, God bless their souls, took over that project several years ago.  I couldn’t have been happier – they get together and bake at one of their houses, instead of mine, so I have no cleanup.  I get to enjoy the wonderful cookies without all the effort.  After all those years of doing everything for everyone, I think that’s fair.

Ditto for work.  Two jobs ago, the firm I worked at simply stopped giving out holiday bonuses, although they did manage the once-a-year Christmas luncheon.  That was fun, but I was kind of glad when I no longer had to attend, seeing as the firm folded and I was out of work.

At the next job (The Job From Hell) everyone was simply too busy to do any celebrating, other than an in-office catered lunch – which lunch, although tasty, was eaten at a desk while phones were ringing.  Not too festive an atmosphere, and again I was glad when I no longer had to participate, having quit that job just before Thanksgiving.

So, this year I figured I was scot-free (not to be confused with Scott Free, who apparently is one of our President’s newest advisors).  After a spate of emails between family members, it was discovered that no one was available for the traditional Christmas Day brunch at my house, and since I expected to work Christmas Eve, I didn’t feel I could host dinner then.  It was therefore decided that one of my daughters would have Christmas Eve dinner at her house.  Again, no hassle for me, although I admit I would have enjoyed hosting the brunch – but hey, once the kids have families of their own, things do change.

Not hosting anything at home means no need to decorate.  Not going out other than to family means no need to overdress.  Works for me.

I had previously asked around at my new job (well, I asked 2 of the other 3 people who work there) what the usual holiday plans were, and was told that last year there was a firm-sponsored restaurant lunch during work hours.  Cool!  Time off during the day, and no worries about proper dress.

Ah, but then, the Big Boss (who pays all the rest of us, so gets to decide) opted to this year host a holiday dinner at a newly opened restaurant, with spouses included.  He’s quite excited about it.

Say what?  I have to actually eat dinner with my husband?  With other people?  And I have to dress up?  On a Friday?

No opting out.  I’m the new kid on the block and can’t very well say I won’t go.  Plus, I really like my co-workers and would love to meet their spouses.  And, the new restaurant is in an architecturally historic building which just begs me to take my camera along.  Ok, now I’m getting excited about it, too.

Ah, but what to wear?  Fortunately, I learned that dress there is business casual, even for dinner, so I could get away with what I wear for work.  And fortunately, a search through my closet turned up a Christmasy outfit I haven’t worn in a couple of years – and which miraculously still fits.

Since the work dinner is on a Friday (my normal day off), I will have plenty of time to get ready, and will have Saturday to sleep in.  My husband can take off a half day from his job, so he can relax a little before dinner, too.

And the best part of all?  The Big Boss also decided to close the office all day on Christmas Eve, so I won’t be stressed for our family get-together.  Had I known, I could have hosted Christmas Eve dinner, but that’s OK.  Let my daughter enjoy hosting. The baton has been passed.

May the holidays begin.

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Image by Tia (used with permission, all rights reserved).  Thank you, Tia!

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29 Responses to Tried to Skip Christmas, Didn’t Happen

  1. We’ll put up a tee and soke trimmings, have a traditional dinner and exchange silly gifts from our ten pound dash. This will be the first year we haven’t had to go anywhere to deliver anything or see anybody.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Not having to travel is a bit of a relief, no? Although I’m sure you’ll miss those visits.

      Liked by 2 people

      • The days of our Christmas Eve run are well behind us now, but with Mum no longer with us, there is no need to go Down South anymore. Long journeys of more than an hour, perhaps an hour and a half, are a nightmare for Hubby, even if we stop so that he can walk around a bit or the dog needs a potty break. Sadly no-one seemed to appreciate that it was at least five to six hours each way, and our last trip back from Bristol took us 9. It’s going to be nice just to plod this year.

        Liked by 2 people

  2. I am too tired to care. I can’t seem to get up any kind of holiday “drive.” I did get some gifts — some for Garry, a couple for my son, some odds and ends for me, but that’s it. I think what i really want is a week of sleep. And the ability to walk up and down the stairs without pain.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s pretty much my point, Marilyn. At a certain stage in life, whether due to age, illness, or both, some of us lose the holiday spirit. After doing the whole thing for so many years, I finally just had enough. I initially tried to wiggle out of the office dinner, but since there are only 4 people in our office and the other 3 were all excited about it, I figured I’d better just go along with it. I do like the people I’ll be dining with, and there is a chance for some decent photographs if I get there a little early, so it should be a pleasant evening.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. joey says:

    Doesn’t sound too shabby at all 🙂 I hope y’all enjoy it! I don’t think we do anything like that. I have Eve off and that’s delightful, cause then it’s a 4-day! Woooooot!
    I reckon I’ll have a tree until neither of us nor someone young and strong can haul it in and out. I do so love the tree. I’ve eased off on baking since returning to work, but I’ll still bake some I’m sure. That’s kinda my thing for me.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You still have kids at home, Joey, so you pretty much have to decorate and bake, at least some, right? I stopped doing all that only after my girls found significant others and began spending more time with their families than ours. At that point, I didn’t figure they needed me to go all out any more.

      Liked by 2 people

      • joey says:

        I baked more, wrapped prettier, and made my own cards when I was single. I enjoy those things.
        I’ve never been a fan of shopping, secret santa gifts for 1000 kids in 10 different groups, flipping 900 pancakes, frying 600 latkes, or going to parties, so that’s what I’ll give up in three or so more years 😉

        Liked by 2 people

  4. I used to go all out for Xmas and stress myself to the point of breaking. It was crazy. We’ve scaled back enormously now and have travelled the last 4 years which meant no decorating and cooking. This year we’ll be home so I’m doing the outside to be festive.
    Glad you’ll be enjoying at least one holiday party. And yay to an old still fitting. That’s present enough right there!

    Liked by 2 people

    • I have never once done the outside of the house, except that one year I stuck plastic candy canes along the sidewalk. The idea of hanging outside lights and then taking them down during a Buffalo, NY winter simply isn’t appealing to me. I’m glad to enjoy other people’s decorations.

      Liked by 2 people

      • It’s a challenge with Maine winters as well. There have been years I’ve almost gotten frostbite wrapping lights around frozen trees. Like I say, I used to go all out… this year? Wreaths on, and candles in, the house windows, 2 lit trees on the barn porch and lighted holly leaves in the barn windows. Done!

        Liked by 2 people

  5. markbialczak says:

    This new wrinkle at the new office sounds fun, CM! Enjoy. And take some nice photos to share with us, please and thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. How exciting, CM. Looking forward to see some nice shots. Have fun! (•‾⌣‾•)و ̑̑♡

    Liked by 1 person

  7. It’s a relief to pass the baton!
    (Only the medium pre-lit tree this year – with as much decoration as I feel like, A couple of lights tossed on the bushes outside (the street lights keep going out – we all laugh and say the only time our street has any light is Christmas )
    Impressed you are baking.
    Gads! You’ve got an outfit, I hope something holiday-ish still fits here for our daughter mandated trip Christmas morning….

    Liked by 1 person

  8. AmyRose🌹 says:

    Curious minds …. what restaurant? No worries I promise I will not sneak over there to take pics. This year Christmas is going to be quiet. We’ve been invited over to a SIL’s house for Eve celebrating, but that being our Anniversary, we’ll see. After all that has gone down in this house of late, I’ve decided no cards going out in the mail, ribbons outside up and that’s it, no baking, and we’ll just exchange gifts (hubby and I) just the two of us. Our family is reeling and in much need of comfort and Mommy and Daddy right now and quiet is what they will get …. that along with a lot of Love. 💞🐾💞

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Congratulations, Brave Spirit—you are in the vanguard here! I hear more and more of the same sentiment from people, especially some of us who have been around the block a few times. I’m so tired of it all, and am constantly paring down. My children do most of the work now, taking on the dinners and other events. It’s a relief to give up some of the responsibilities! Thanks for this—it’s timely!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yup. I even posted on Facebook for everyone to please not mail me any holiday cards, and just to simply wish me a Merry Christmas on FB. Cheaper, easier, and appreciated just as well. Most of my friends complied. But one relative posted a rather snotty retort that Christmas only comes once a year and I was getting a card anyway. What ever happened to giving people what they want during the holidays?

      Liked by 1 person

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