The holidays didn't go exactly as planned. The restaurant Jay picked for his birthday dinner closed early that day. He chose IHOP as a backup once we got to the original place & found it closed. The eggs were undercooked & my bacon & my husband's steak were overcooked. My crepes were fantastic, though. Jay & Dea loved their pancakes, which was good. It wasn't the plan, and it wasn't great, but Jay enjoyed his birthday dinner.
We ended up ordering pizza for our Solstice dinner because I wasn't feeling up to cooking. I got that damn respiratory virus everyone else just got over. So, for Solstice, Christmas, and Jay's birthday, I could barely breathe & felt like crap.
We did our Christmas, just us & the kids, on Christmas Eve. We opened presents & looked through our stockings in the morning. Then, my husband headed off to my sister & brother-in-law's house to help my brother-in-law work on their car. He took Dea & the dog with him.
My husband got into a fight, kind of, with my brother-in-law's brother & his wife. They posted a video of their kids performing on Facebook & asked my husband to take a look at it. He did & then he commented on it. He said that they did a good job. He then added a little friendly advice, that one of them would play more fluidly once he relaxed more, and the parents didn't take kindly to that. They deleted the comment & sent him messages, from both of them, chewing him out for criticizing their child. He wasn't rude, disrespectful, or nasty in his comment. They both just seriously overreacted. All they really wanted was praise for their kids. They wanted everyone who watched to tell them how great their kids are. My husband, a musician, did say they were good & was just being honest in his added advice. It wasn't meant to be an insult to the kid, but that's how they took it. Then, after chewing him out for his comment, they unfriended both of us.
On Christmas Eve, we got a Christmas card in the mail from my husband's sister. I wrote a whole post about that one (will be posted soon), so I won't go into detail here. Let's just say it didn't make for a great holiday.
We were going to have cheeseburgers for dinner on Christmas Eve, but the meat smelled funny. So we had stuffed shells in a meatless tomato sauce, broccoli, corn, and waffle fries. My husband & Jay didn't like the cheese mixture in the shells. I bought them pre-made & frozen, only making the sauce & heating the shells (I really didn't feel up to cooking, due to being sick). So, it's not like it was an insult to my cooking or anything, but it would have been nice if everyone could have enjoyed the meal.
Throughout everything that went wrong, I did my best to relax. I didn't expect the holidays to be perfect, but calm & relaxing would have been awesome. I am trying to be more positive, so fought hard to stay relaxed & see the bright side of things as one thing after another went wrong. With most of it, it was pretty easy. I don't care what my husband's sister thinks of me, so am not bothered by the current thing with her. I am bothered by its effect on my husband, though, and wish I could do something to make it easier for him. I am also not bothered by the unfriending on Facebook. I have spent many years dealing with petty, immature behavior from various family members (along with a serious dose of crazy from many family members), so adding some more petty, immature behavior isn't a big deal. I do feel bad about Jay's birthday dinner & our Christmas & Solstice dinners, though. I will have to try harder to make sure things go as planned for holiday & birthday meals next year.
Christmas day was fantastic. Yes, I was still sick, but we had a great day anyway. We did Christmas with family. They aren't technically related any more, it was at the home of my ex-step-mom, but we still consider them family. My dad is on wife three. We spent Christmas with wife 2, her husband, and the members of her family that live here. She & my dad divorced shortly after Jay was born, but we have maintained contact throughout that time. I truly enjoy spending time with them, and have never stopped thinking of them as my family. We had a great time. We opened presents, ate good food, played games, sat & talked. It was just such a nice, fun day. The only problem I had was the recurring issue of our dog & one of her dogs not getting along. It was so great to have a day where nothing went wrong.
Days after Christmas, we had our last Christmas party. It was Christmas at my grandpa's with my mom's side of the family. There was some drama, as usual. There was some tension, as usual. There were issues, as usual. There was insanity, as usual. However, much of the insanity was directed at other people, instead of at me, which was nice. It ended up being a rather enjoyable evening. I got to see many of the people who matter to me. I got to hold my cousin's baby, she is gorgeous. My kids were fairly well behaved & weren't among the children who got screamed at to shut up by my mother. Much of the drama was understated, as well, which is quite uncommon in our family. It is usually out there, front & center, loud, and obvious to all. It was still fairly obvious, but much quieter & low-key than usual.
Honestly, the only thing that would have made my holidays better is seeing my dad. We got a card, an ecard, a box of presents, and a few emails. I would really have loved to see him, though.
Well, my holidays are over. I am going to spend this next week focusing on getting the house clean, holiday decorations put away, and making sure everything is set for school next week. I hope you all had wonderful holidays! If you celebrate New Year's Eve, I hope that is also a fantastic & safe celebration.