Monday, April 13, 2009

Back to School...Back to Work...Where's the Break?

Spring Break is over! Woo Hoo! Don't get me wrong, I love my kids and love spending time with them, but this past week has been tough. Maybe it was because it was a rainy, cold, can't send the kids outside when they are bickering or playing a fierce game of basketball in the hallway kind of week. Then add the fact that my daughter was not feeling well for most of it and it was the week before Easter. All of that may have something to do with the fact that my head is still spinning when I think about everything I managed to get done, including writing almost everyday, and throbbing over what I did not get to (laundry, cleaning up house after some rabbit pumped up on sugar ransacked it, and of course the bills are not going to pay themselves).

Now it's Monday and everyone is back to school and work; my house is silent and I can't help thinking how fast it all is passing. I know that I can't be the only one who feels like everything is moving faster and the days are filled with more things to do. I feel like I wake up everyday with a longer To Do list and go to bed stressing about what I didn't do. I think the holidays make me feel this way. They are just not as relaxing and enjoyable as they used to be, as they should be.

For the past few years I have been trying to find ways to change the hectic feeling that come along with holidays. We have always spent them with our families, making a point to stop by at my husband's parents and mine. We are lucky enough (99.9% of the time anyway) to live close to both sides and ALL siblings. This had been a tradition we have always, until recent years, enjoyed. I mean food and desserts at every turn and none of the mess at your own house, who wouldn't love that? I don't know about you, but helping someone else clean up after a big meal never seems as bad as being stuck cleaning up your own.

The problem is, as every one's lives get more hectic this tradition has turned into more of a tug of war and my family is at the center of the rope. There are siblings on both sides and they have children, so finding a time that everyone can meet up has become a challenge. Anyone from a large family knows that the only solution for challenges are many, many, many phone calls between family members; hashing out dinner times and who can make it for when. Unfortunately, since we have the most children out of all of our respective siblings we are the ones that get the brunt of the calls. I love our collective families, but I miss those relaxing holidays when you could just show up when you could and stay as long as you wanted and then move on to the next house.

I know it shouldn't surprise me that after all of that I sit here in a silent house feeling a little burnt out. Life is just too short to let all of this overshadow the real reason, in my mind anyway, for holidays. It should be a time to enjoy family and friends, celebrate life, and eat until you can't sit up right. I am seriously thinking about changing the tradition and having holiday meals at home.

So this brings me to ask you, how do you celebrate? I'm not asking what your religious stance is, just how you choose to celebrate your life moments. Do you spend the day hopping from house to house, do you have everyone come to your house, or something in between?

I am interested to hear what you think about this and if you get the same rushed and hectic feelings before and after the holidays. Leave a comment here or, if you would rather not have it published you can email me at


  1. Most of our family lives in England so visits back there can be very hectic as we try to fit everyone in. The best vacations have been the ones with a big family party followed by a week in a rented house somewhere with close relatives. Living together, playing games, watching football on TV, preparing meals together in the kitchen... perfect.

  2. Sheila,
    That sounds great. That's what I want to get back to; a holiday that you can relax and enjoy each other's company instead of staring at your watch and trying to be every where at once. We rent a cottage on the beach in the summer and have friends and family come stay with us. Hmmm, maybe I need to find a way to get everyone to a beach house for the holidays :)

    Thanks for your comment and the idea,
    Kristin Callender