In honor of turkey day, I’m finally going to
share with you...
The Setting—My Grandma’s house
Main Characters—My Mom (the quiet one)
Me (the not-so-quiet one)
Grandma (the family matriarch)
Aunt Jo (the wild card)
Supporting Cast—my kids, sisters, dad, uncles, aunts, nephews, nieces; everyone except Rick who managed to be at work that year (lucky him!)
The back story—There are too many of us. It’s a fact, just deal with it! No one can afford to buy present for everyone and really it’s ridiculous. So, we all decided to draw names, even with the kids (Everyone was in agreement)! Each kid would draw a cousins name and have a $50 limit on presents. Each adult would take a child shopping. See?!? Everyone was still involved but no one ended up destitute. Brillant, you say? Thank you!!
SideNote: Every family still has Christmas with their own kids at their own house—so this is just for the large family gathering!
Scene: Family is sitting around the living room. Meal is over, everyone looks content and lethargic. Looks can be deceiving
Sunie: “Okay, let’s draw names for the kids. We only have a month left to help them shop.”
Someone who wasn’t paying attention the first 20 times: “How does this work?”
Sunie: (huge sigh) “The kids each draw a name, each adult takes one child to help them buy presents. This way everyone gets gifts and no one spends more than $50.”
Sister #2: “Okay, that’s fine with me.”
The two sisters gaze across the room at each other. Smiling. For once the universe is aligned and they actually agree on something. Awwwww….
Paper slips are prepared and names are being drawn and recorded for future reference
Aunt Jo plops down in the middle: “Now, what are you guys doing?”
Sunie: (HUGE, dramatic sigh) “We are letting the kids draw names for Christmas.”
Aunt Jo: “What?!?”
Sunie patiently explains again
Aunt Jo: “NO! I understand WHAT you’re doing, but WHY?”
Sunie: “The kids are getting older. They don’t need all these gifts and it’s good for them to think of others and buy gifts for their cousins.”
Aunt Jo cocks her head sideways. The air leaves the room. You can hear the butts clench as everyone awaits her next remark.
Aunt Jo: “Hmph.”
She doesn’t like it. The pressure builds and the living room is full of women stuffed with holiday pies. The air is charged. It’s a showdown. Who will break first…
Grandma blurts loudly: “They’re cheap! They don’t wanna buy the kids presents this year.”
All air is sucked from the room as every woman gasps!
Sunie explodes: “If you don’t wanna do this—that's fine, I don’t care either way!”
Mom jumps in with a quiet warning: “Sunie…”
Sunie refuses to shut up: “No, Mom, why does Grandma get to say something hateful and I have to be quiet? She was all for this idea before Aunt Jo said something.”
The entire room stops and surveys the damage. Grandma has tears in her eyes. Sunie has fire in her eyes.
Sunie (oh, why can’t I just SHUT UP?): “Well?!”
Then, out of nowhere, ladies and gentlemen, Mom leaps off the couch and piles onto Sunie in the greatest Thanksgiving tackle this family has every seen. Sunie is flattened like a pancake, she was totally taken by surprise.
Sunie: “Mom!! Get off me!”
Mom: “Not until you decide to be nice to your grandmother.”
Sunie: “Uggg! She started it!!!”
Mom: “I mean it, Sunie! I’ll stay here all day.”
Sunie: “You’re crushing me! GET OFF! I SWEAR, I WILL TAKE MY KIDS AND WE WILL LEAVE! GET OFF ME! NOW!!!” There might have been some bad words in there, but I don’t like to remember that part. It’s hard to think when your Mom has you down in a football tackle.
At this point Sunie struggles free and escapes outside. Luckily the children were not witness to this mayhem as they were also outdoors. After several hours of not quite speaking, an apology to Grandma, and pumpkin pie everyone lived happily ever after.
When you ask everyone about the event now (years later)—they say:
Sister #1 “I love holidays with you and Mom. There’s always drama.”
Grandma, “Drama? What drama? I thought it was a nice Thanksgiving.”
Dad. “I wasn’t really paying attention. You guys are always like that.”
Mom, “I’ll do it again too—if you make me!”
Me: “hmmmmm…think I’ll keep my opinions to my self. My back still isn’t right from last time.” J
Remember, people, the holidays are all about making memories!! HA
PS- The sister gazing thing probably didn't happen, and my behaviour? well...I AM sorry, but, you can see how they drive me to act like that...right?!? I mean, my Grandma looks sweet but she'll wait patiently to get her 'dig' in somewhere. Don't let that little old lady exterior fool ya! Unless she's making cookies, then she's sweet as sugar ;)