Thursday, November 15, 2007

Plenty to be thankful for

Before we get down to "bidness" I have to show you this:


Imposter Mom gave me this award today. You could have knocked me over with a feather when I saw that she had nominated me. I just recently discovered her blog (and love it!) but I really had no idea she was even reading mine. But oh! What a nice surprise!

So I'm passing it on to these lovely ladies:

The Tea Party Place

One Woman Show


Stay At Home Mom Going Quickly Insane


Now...on with the ramblings, er, I mean show...

First of all, I cannot be-leeve Thanksgiving is next week. It has completely snuck up on me this year. And if we're being honest, I'm a little disappointed. Because we're spending it with Mr. Daddy's family. Mr. Daddy is completely aware of my feelings and thinks I'm a little silly, but I really like my family. (Editorial note: for most of this post, when I say "family" I'm referring to my mother, brother, dad, aunts, cousins, step-siblings, etc. I realize that I have my own family now, but for ease of reading -- and writing -- see note above).

Don't get me wrong, I really, really like Mr. Daddy's family, too. Of course I love them, but I like them too, which is wayyy more important, if you ask me. In fact, I have a hard time imagining a better family that I could have married into. Mr. Daddy's mom is one of three sisters who are very close. And they're a hoot. When they all get together they'll usually wind up tickled about something and we'll all find ourselves just about rolling on the floor laughing along with them. They used to be a semi-famous (for West Virginia) singing trio when they were children and in their teens and very early twenties and they like to sing a lot. And they're really good, so that's always fun. When Bubba was about 3 weeks old we were at their house for Christmas an they decided to "serenade" him with "Frosty the Snowman" but they kept forgetting the order of the verses and before it was over we were all hysterical laughing and no one could sing a note. We have that on tape somewhere -- I need to dig that out.

And Mr. Daddy is one of six children and I really like all his siblings, though most live in West Virginia and so we don't get to see them that often. So I will be really excited to see them next week. Plus we have a new nephew, Max, that we'll be meeting for the first time.

BUT, having Thanksgiving with them means that I won't be having Thanksgiving with my own family. I've said before on this blog that I'm a family girl. And I would have to say that spending major holidays away from my family was (and sometimes still is) the hardest thing about getting married and blending families. I mean, I spent 24 years with my family before I married into another family. THAT's a hard habit to break.

One of the biggest fights Mr. Daddy and I have had was our first Christmas as a married couple. My family always gathered on Christmas Eve. We'd go to a candlelight service at the church, go home to a delicious meal and then -- and I know this is sacrilege to some people, BUT -- we would open our presents from each other. Our first Christmas together we went to my mom's house for dinner on Christmas Eve and then went home. I mentioned something about seeing my mom again on Christmas Day and Mr. Daddy said "What? We're not going back are we? We just saw those people."

THOSE PEOPLE?!? In retrospect I know he didn't mean any disrespect to them or dislike for them, but all I heard was "THOSE PEOPLE!"

"'THOSE PEOPLE' are my FAMILY!!" I yelled.

"We're a family now!" he countered.

"NO.WE.ARE.NOT!" I cried (literally). "Not until we have kids." In the end we did go to my mom's for Christmas Day, too. Partially because there wasn't a thing to eat at our house. I had just assumed that we would spend Christmas Day with them and so had not bought anything at the store.

And of course we now have kids and we have a family of our own. These familial tugs-of-war have gotten easier over the years. And I will enjoy seeing Mr. Daddy's family next week. And Bubba and Punkin are going to have a blast playing with their cousins. And in all fairness we have spent the majority of the major holidays with my family. But that doesn't mean I'm going to miss my extended family any less. But wherever I spend the holiday, I'm thankful for ALL of my family.

10 comments:

Karen said...

It's truly tough sorting out all the holidays when you're married. It's very like a divorce and trying to share the children. Nobody is happy, and yet everyone pretends to be.

Esme said...

Just after I graduated from college, my mom forsaw that there would eventually be a tug-of-war at the holidays, between our family and the family of whomever my brothers and I eventually married. So she started "Early Thanksgiving" and "Early Christmas." My brothers and I (and, now, the families we've created by marriage) gather with my parents a week or two before the actual holiday, for a celebration -- huge feast, presents, the works. Then, a week later, we do it all over again with our inlaws. The kids are psyched -- two Christmases! -- and none of us feel like we have to choose...

Before we started doing early holidays, I dreaded negotiating who's spend which holiday where. Took a lot of the job right out of it, for me...

Laurel said...

My first blog award! Thanks, Madame! You are too, too kind.

One question: Does his family read your blog? My guess is no, but if it is yes, you may have something interesting to discuss over the Thanksgiving table this year! ;0)

But I know what you mean. Fourteen years later, I am now accustomed to the "change." In fact, now I really like spending our holidays here in our own home and not running here and there meeting tons of family obligations. But it's taken me a long, long time to get there. I suppose it helps that my mom is getting on in age and not able to do the whole holiday thing the way we used to. That is a BIG life change. So weird.

And now I'm rambling...Now I'm done.

Colleen said...

congrats on your award! I know I really enjoy your blog. :)

Since we live 600 miles from his family and 700 miles from mine, we don't do much traveling for the holidays. But when we do go back to Chicago and/or northern Indiana, it's like a huge whirlwind of visiting everyone we haven't seen and omigosh if we don't see so-and-so she will gripe and cry and make my mother miserable and could we just drop by here and there, too? I love them, but it's exhausting.
Nice thing, though...when we visited my mom last November, she had the idea to invite EVERYONE over to her house so that we could all still visit without making ourselves crazy or hating our families. Hopefully if we ever get back out there again, we can do that, too.

Susan said...

Hey, thanks for the eagle blog award, Madame! It's nice that you get along with both sides of the family, and I'm sure your trip will be well worth it. Sometimes it's good to shake things up now and then. Besides, my Ex' family used to celebrate Thanksgiving on the day after because of scheduling conflicts. Maybe you could do a week after celebration with your folks! Have a great weekend...

Burgh Baby's Mom said...

We have left my family completely out of the equation and still struggle with holidays. We spend them at my in-laws, but since they are divorced, it still means two families to see. We seemed to have nailed the routine down right up until we had a baby. Now everybody fights for more time with us. And that is why we stay at a hotel, 20 minutes away from all of the bickering.

All Adither said...

When you dig out that tape, please try to figure out how to put the audio on your blog ;)

Leslie said...

Madame Queen, we'll miss you and yours at Thanksgiving, too. Birdy said, "Bubba won't be at Thanksgiving? Where will he be?" She has no concept that he has other family. And I have to say, I couldn't have married into a better family than yours!

1blueshi1 said...

THANK YOU so much for the blog award, Madame Queen! And I apologize for the lateness of my thanks; I will be posting the award on my blog this week--possibly in between turkey bastings, but I will get it there!!!
Have a VERY happy holiday. I waved at your exit when we went through on our way to VA!!!

Lulu said...

Hi! It's me! I'm here and alive! But barely.

Holidays and EXTREMELY tough around my house. My parents are divorced, GR's parents are divorced, and I'm divorced from Gus's father. Five different families to deal with! Argh! Actually, Thanksgiving is usually not so bad. I usually take off to FLA to my mom's house and leave GR and Gus to figure out what to do. I'm so bad...