I grew up in Samoa. There were six of us children. Our father is Samoan and our mother is a New Zealander so we grew up with a western/British flavor added to our tropical island Christmas celebrations. Christmas is about family and inevitably as the day draws near, I am reminded of my family Christmas traditions and celebrations – and what I can learn from them and carry on with my own children. May I present…the Twelve Days of Christmas Traditions.
* The Christmas Fight. It’s a stone cold fact that the Christmas season can be a conflict-ridden one. Stress levels can be riding high, there’s angst as Xmas wishes war against budget constraints, and a home is crowded to incendiary levels as alllllll your children are home for the holidays. Growing up, our home was no different. Our parent’s celebrate their wedding anniversary on Dec 15th and so without fail, they usually have a domestic bliss squabble of some kind around this date and then we six must tiptoe around their silent treatment for a few days. Usually its because my father hasn’t paid tribute to the anniversary in a Wife-approved manner. As in, “Perfume?! Chanel No5 AGAIN? Can’t you ever think to buy me anything else?”and “Orchids? What on earth possessed you to think that I would want four orchid plants for my anniversary? You know they won’t stay alive for very long!” Thankfully, their scrap always clears up in time for Christmas Day, leaving the home filled with joy to the world feelings. It took her a few years but finally my mother figured out how to fix this problem of having a husband who could not read her mind and decipher her deepest wishes. She buys her own anniversary present now. This year it was a baroque pearl necklace (which to me, looked suspiciously like a string of warty slugs – but then I am a very unrefined and uncultured woman who thinks Kmart is the height of shopping bliss). And a delicious pair of sky-high pink platform shoes. I was coveting those shoes in a very Biblical way. My mother is 70 years old. She rocks. I am hopeful that I can walk in such shoes by the time I’m 70. Because I tried them on and fell over.
Christmas Tradition Message? Don’t get married just before Christmas. It has the potential to put a damper on your future family festive celebrations. Me and the Hot Man celebrate our anniversary on Dec 26th. Much better. And everyone knows the Boxing Day sales are amazing places to buy that perfect anniversary gift (for one’s self.) This year I’m getting me a delicious pair of pink platform shoes. Only roof-high ones though. I’m not as cool as my mum. Not yet.
So – what causes Christmas season tension in YOUR house?!