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!