Adjusted Traditions

Today marks the beginning of the holiday season.  With this, I begin to think of ways to adjust my expectations to match our reality.

A favorite tradition has always been looking at the holiday lights as we drive through our neighborhood.  In my mind, we are bundled up in the car with hot chocolate and Christmas music is playing in the background.  Our heads are turning from left to right as we admire all the houses that look even better than last year’s display.  In reality, my son is in the backseat with his iPad and he doesn’t want any music playing that could break his concentration.  He is cold and annoyed that he is only at 12% power and might not make it back to the house in time to finish his current level. This year, I will try to enjoy the lights despite the sound of zombies attacking from the backseat.

The annual Santa picture is a long-standing tradition.  My parents used to take my sister and I to sit with Santa. We waited in a long line and then when the brief meeting was over, we each picked out an ornament. I love seeing this photos.  When my son was a baby, this was a tradition that I definitely wanted to continue.  While many families find the early pictures challenging, I found those the easiest.  No complaining and long debates where he tried to prove that this experience was hypocritical to our typical family values

“Since when do you want me to talk to strangers?!”

“Can’t I just be thankful for what I already have?”

Come to think of it, I get arguments and running when any type of family photo is being taken.  Today, the whole family waited as my son refused to join the annual photo experience. Once he finally did bless us with his presence, a regrettable face was displayed instead of his handsome smile. Sigh.

I love the idea of holiday meals served with family at a beautifully set table; however, there is usually a bit of stress when you have a boy like mine who hates sitting at the table.  This is not the battle that I want to have in front of relatives, so I reluctantly agree that he can go to the living room instead of eating with the rest of us.  Not surprising, he is starving later.

The holidays come with a ramped up sensory experience for everyone, especially my TBP.  The music, the blinking lights and the crowds…oh the crowds! So while I like the idea of the Reindeer event and the tour of the giant gingerbread houses, I know it isn’t in the plan.  At least, not this year.

Each year, I try to remind myself early in the holidays what the true meaning of the season is about.  So now I will ask you…What are the traditions that you adjust to fit your family?

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