Holidays are a good time for families to get together. Since we are in the first weeks of autumn, Richly Middle Class thought we would share some advice based on some of our holiday experiences.
We love holidays but we know they can be really stressful. Here are a few scenarios that you can avoid to make your holiday a more stress free and fun event.
DINNER IS ALWAYS AT
If you have not received a formal invitation to Grandmother’s, Mom’s, Aunt Betty’s, or Cousin Johnny Mae’s house yet, don’t assume that the holiday festival is still going on. Wait until you receive your invitation. If you cannot wait, politely call up and check in. To avoid an awkward situation in case there are no dinner plans, start off with,
“Cousin Johnny Mae, I was wondering what I could bring for Thanksgiving dinner this year?”
Yes, you are right. She (yes, it is a she) will probably be rolling her eyes and thinking you have not brought anything EVER to Thanksgiving dinner, and hopefully you will get a polite answer to your question!
THE EMPTY HANDED GUEST
If you find out the event is a go, DON’T go empty handed. For goodness sakes, it is September; you can save up a little money, a couple of quarters a week to contribute to a dish, some soda, a few carnations, or even a bag of sugar. If you start saving 50 cents a week today, by the time Thanksgiving rolls around you’ll have $5.50. Here are some things that you might be able to contribute to this joyous event. There is no way that you can take your family out to dinner on $5.50 or make Thanksgiving dinner at home so let’s get real and do our part.
- A 5lb bag of potatoes for mashed potatoes or potato salad. The average cost of a bag of potatoes in about $2.99. You could even throw in a 2 liter bottle of soda and you would look like the big spender arriving with not one BUT two grocery bags.
- A 5lb bag of granulated sugar ($1.89), brown sugar ($.89), (2) 2 Liter Sodas ($2.30)
- 12 pack of Quilted Northern Bath Tissue ($5.00). Don’t laugh; you know folks go through a lot of it during the holidays. (And please! Please! Don’t ask for the rest of the bag back when you go home. With the .55 you have left you can pick up a roll on the way home.
- 2 bouquets of carnations (any color you like) for $4.99.
“Y’All I AM BRINGING MY NEW MAN AS AN OVERNIGHT GUEST”
If you are staying at someone’s house and you are single, don’t invite your boyfriend you met last night to spend the weekend too. If he is that special, get his number and call him when you get back.
OVERNIGHT INDECENT EXPOSURE
If you are one of those people who look forward to your annual booty call when you go back to your home town, please don’t be cheap and do it in the back of the car. If you happen to get arrested at 2 am in the morning for indecent exposure, don’t call your mamma to bail you out of jail. Sit there for the weekend or call a friend. She doesn’t need the stress of knowing that her 30, 40, 50 year old child is classless!
I DON’T SHARE MY BOONE’S HILL
Okay it does not matter what your background is because everyone has one of these folks in their lives. You know the one who started celebrating Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years at 7:00 am at home alone. By the time they get to the family event; they are wobbly, smelly, scaring the children, and speaking the alcoholic version of tongues. If you are that person, this year, share your Boone’ Hill, bring it to the party, don’t start drinking early. You are not a fun drunk. And stay away from Aunt Mable’s lampshades with the plastic on them. You know she is trying to protect them from the dust.
“They are not a party hats, drunk fool!”
EVERYONE IS CHASING ME, I JUST DON’T HAVE TIME
In life we have challenges in our relationship. Some of us have more than others. So if you are one of those women or men, don’t read up on your romance novels or your issues of male magazines so you can tell us about all the notches on your bed post. The family already knows that you are having a seven year drought. And, if you just stop making up those stories we might know a really distant cousin we can hook you up with.
ISN’T MY COUCH LOVELY?
If you are hosting Thanksgiving at your house, please make sure you encourage your spouse to resist the urge to set up a living room in his garage with that LCD television and built in speakers.
MOM GAVE ME THE IMPORTANT JOB BOILING WATER
Do not get an attitude if your mother asks you to get up at 5:00 am to boil 2 pots of boiling water and then let it cool off. You know why she did it. YOU CAN NOT COOK!! And last year you complained that you were not included in the dinner preparations. You can be included. Boil your water, move on, go back upstair, get under the covers or take to yourself to a corner and text somebody. But don’t do any of that until you make your contribution to the family dinner. You heard me. BOIL YOUR WATER! If you are lucky, when mom say that everyone contributed to cooking the meal, your sister, aunts, and cousins will not rat your no cooking butt out.
DID YOU GET YOUR COACH BAG AT THE FLEA MARKET
The family is really proud of you for obtaining your degree and getting that promotion. Don’t get mad with Cousin Betsy who just got her outfit off layaway and asks you if you got your Coach bag from Tom at the flea market. No, she cannot tell real leather from her pleather. Just roll with it. You are with family just for the weekend.
CAN YOU DRIVE US; THERE IS A TELEVISION FOR $19
While Black Friday might not be for everyone, you know that it is your family’s thing. So again, roll with it and get up early. Put your sunglasses on and for goodness sake if your family is fighting with someone over the Wal-Mart $19.00 TV offer and a camera crew from the local news comes to film it. Duck out of the store quick and wait for them in the car. Verify any receipts to make sure items were purchase before driving off.
While we have tried to inject a little humor in the situation, be careful not to repeat these mistakes when you are celebrating the holidays. Start saving now as you can see $5.50 can really help a family out a Thanksgiving. You’ll thank me in the end for giving you this little piece of advice. Your family will praise you for your efforts.