No one likes change---especially people in this family! But, we knew last year it was coming. Sandy gave us fair warning. They are no longer coming to Nashville for Christmas. It's time. It's definitely time for them to start their own traditions. Actually, I'm happy that I got a year more than I expected. After all, we stopped going to St. Louis for Christmas when Sandy started college. Honestly, I can't even remember what it was like those first few years at here.
Anyway, we decided that we needed to come up with a few new traditions of our own---just so it wouldn't seem like we were doing the same things, but with only half the family. Here's the new plan:
1. Butch and I are going to spend a long weekend in Charlotte the weekend before Christmas (that's this weekend). That way we can watch the kids open their gifts. That's half the fun. I don't want to get to the point where we just sent a box or worse (gasp) send a check!
2. Family baking day is gone due to healthy eating. It has been replaced this year by our outing to see the holiday lights at Cheekwood.
3. We're keeping our dinner of Nicky's jambalaya at their house. We're turning it in to Jordan's birthday celebration. I have a new game planned for that---same game I'm taking to Charlotte.
4. We're kicking off our Christmas weekend with happy hour and dinner at the club. The in-town family will stay through Christmas dinner. On Friday night, we'll play games when we get home from the club.
5. Christmas Eve breakfast remains. Everyone likes a big breakfast. Although, with all the healthy eating, I did give them a choice:
A. Our traditional breakfast: bacon, eggs, biscuits, gravy, potatoes and fresh fruit salad. Or---
They chose traditional! Thank goodness. It's the only time I make big breakfasts---when the family is here.
6. To replace our "santa of the sleigh," Stephanie has come up with a new idea that we're all excited about. She proposed a "secret santa" exchange. She sent out the assignments--some fancy internet generator so even she doesn't know who has who. We are to come up with a $15.00 gift beginning with "our person's" first name initial. I've got the BEST idea! (Will share when the exchange happens.)
7. Christmas Eve and gift opening. We normally had an array of pick-up foods that we'd munch on all night as we opened gifts. This year, I'm doing a sit-down dinner instead. We'll have gift opening after that along with another game or poker.
8. Christmas Dinner will pretty much remain the same. It will be super easy to cook for just 6 people! After dinner, everyone will go home. I'll start the decoration "take down." Actually, the only reason I'm doing it so quick this year is because Butch leaves for Belize with Mitchell the next day. I do not want the Christmas stuff hanging around until he returns on January 3rd.
9. While Butch is in Belize, I'm going to St. Louis to spend a few days with my sisters. All 6 will be there! We'll relive our Italy trip, visit the "olds", eat out---a lot, talk about out beach trip and play games. We don't get to be together often enough. We're making it a priority.
And there you have it. Our new holiday plan. It will be fun, but different. And that's okay!
What's your plan for the holidays?