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Holidays

Posted by westelle (My Page) on
Sat, Dec 14, 13 at 23:04

We observe Christmas in our house, and because of DH the whole family will gather here.

Is anyone else having a difficult time getting decorations up, gifts bought, menus set, food bought, etc.? I am!

I still haven't ordered anything for DH's sisters and really don't have the time to run around buying something and mailing them out.

I've already decided that our immediate family will get cash money. The youngest might be a little young for no big presents, but I just can't do it.

Too yet I hurt my hip and am having trouble doing much walking. So much for shopping the mall!

I put up some more decorations today, but still looks a little barren.

How are all of you handling the holidays?


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Holidays

My father died at age 93 on Dec 10, 1999 and my mother died 12/27/2006, age 95. Then I have had three favorite dogs die over the years during the same calendar time.

We buy gifts for our grandson, who will be 10 on Christmas Eve, and give our son and DIL a check. They are way across the country from us. That's it.

Haven't bothered with other gifts or decorations in 14 years.

We are fine with it. Life goes on, and sometimes we transition our lives.


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RE: Holidays

It was the very situation that you speak of, that changed how we do Christmas now. We were buying for everyone and then I had my MIL to care for and could not get out much and so my daughter was buying my gifts for others and the fun was gone for me & my daughter, It was a chore instead of fun, so I suggested we draw names for the kids (each family has one child to buy for) and then each family is to bring a family gift, something fun for the day. You take your gift home at the end of the day. This gift can be a game or a craft or even food. We have been doing this now for about 10 years and it really eased the stress of gift buying.


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RE: Holidays

It's just me, I usually buy myself something nice.


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RE: Holidays

I started downsizing our Christmas decorations little by little years ago. Now I only set up the Advent candle wreath and a nativity scene. We also stopped worrying about a tree several years ago. Too much work getting it up & decorated, and taking it down was even worse.

I get really tired of sweet baked goods too. We have a friend whose mother goes all out baking and making candies. Every year we get a giant platter, but I can barely stand to look at it. I'm Greek, so I'm "supposed" to be busy making baklava and all those other Greek sweets at Christmas time. However, I developed a dislike of baklava years & years ago -- probably the result of helping my mom make pan upon pan of the stuff each year. It's not a treat to me anymore.

When my mom was in the memory care section of her assisted living facility, my daughter & I would go over there to celebrate holidays. We found it was too tiring and confusing for my mom to come to our home. The facility always had a special meal for Thanksgiving & Christmas, and we'd sign up for them. That way we had a fun time together but without stressing my mother.

I don't mind buying something special for our two children, their spouses and my 3 granddaughters. They all live close by, so it's kind of fun to shop for them. The real problem is with my husband's family in another state. I've gotten to the point where I order specialty fresh fruit packages most of the time.

When my kids and their families are going to join us, we keep the menus pretty limited. None of the 5 appetizers, 4 desserts, 3 meats, etc. My daughter & daughter-in-law both love to cook, so it's fun deciding who's going to fix what. But it's very casual -- contribute what you feel like cooking. We'd all be happy with pizza or macaroni and cheese.


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RE: Holidays

Simplification is necessary as dementia progresses.

The grandmother gets seriously rattled when there's a departure from the "normal" daily routine ... any kind of celebration ... Christmas, Thanksgiving, Mother's Day, birthday, etc. If told it's a holiday, she can't get a grip on the info ... forgets, constantly questions. The next day or two she'll slip into a sort of delirium, confused as to where is she, where (in her mind) she's supposed to go and why, who will be there, where is her mother (died 50 years ago), where is her sister (died 10 years ago), packing-up to go home (to a house dating more than 67 years ago).

Much less traumatic to keep it all *very* low-key. If there's a family gathering, present it as a normal visit, not something special or holiday-related.


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RE: Holidays

Agree with dadoes; keep it simple. My MIL just moved to a senior facility just before Thanksgiving 2013, and has only mild dementia.

She loves how every floor is decorated. We've gotten her to go to their special events, like watching a gingerbread house contest and sing-along caroling. She's still a little shy about going on her own, but is slowly making friends and doing even better than we hoped.

We keep our holidays simple. I used to spend days decorating, but no longer. I still can't bear to give away my lovely tree ornaments I've collected over the years, but eventually I will, I suppose.

Adults in my family gave up gift-giving years ago. Kids only. Sometimes we adults will give one another presents if we run across something that's really cool.

Our big celebration is to get together for a holiday potluck. We all love to cook and it's a struggle to keep from ending up with a zillion leftovers, LOL! This way, one Xmas tree serves for five different families. Thank goodness my ex-BIL doesn't mind sweeping up dead pine tree needles off his floor....(he's got the best house for entertaining so he always hosts).


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RE: Holidays

When my MIL was in a nursing home we would go to all events there and we would have her to our home on the holidays(mothers day, 4th of July, Christmas, Thanksgiving, birthdays etc.) but to her they were just outings. So we stopped doing most of them.It was hard just to get her out of the nursing home into the car or our house. We did increase the time we spent with her at the home. That meant more to her then anything else.
Mary


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RE: Holidays

An added complication: I had to 'fire' one of the caretakers and now may not have anyone on the nights for Christmas Eve and Night. If I have to have a newbie here then I might as well do the care myself and save the money since I'll be up most of the night either way. Since all our kids will be here maybe we can "share the load".


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RE: Holidays

Istopped getting gifts a long time ago. Half the time, i do not know what to get, the other half the recipient does not like the gift. So i jst said to myself with the little money that I have, I will no longer buy anything, however of I see that someobdy has a need, then i will fulfill the need by making a purchase or giving cash.


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RE: Holidays

Our youngest daughter took the night shift those two nights. She knew that I am needed by everyone everyday, but she could sleep. God bless her! I would be a zombie by now.

We tried to get DH up each evening to at least sit with the family. It's a lot of work, but I think it meant a lot to him to be part of the festivities.


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RE: Holidays

Westelle, how considerate of your daughter. I'm sure your husband appreciated being part of the fun, no matter what his capacity to actively participate.


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