Gransnet forums

Christmas

Fed up of doing it all

(43 Posts)
Smiley4 Sat 22-Dec-18 12:13:25

Is anyone else like me. Women seem to have the vast burden of Christmas and everyone else in the family seems to think it “just happens”.
It’s the gift decisions, what to buy for whom.
The wrapping paper, scissors, cello tape
Buying and sending Christmas cards
Wrapping the gifts,
Making sure they get to everyone before Christmas ie overseas or other end of the country.
Planning Christmas dinner - who likes what. ( In my family everyone likes different things. )
Shopping for food, Christmas crackers etc.
Cooking food in the day. As I’m not a good cook, it overwhelms me to be honest!
Making the Christmas table look nice - candles, table runner etc.
Getting drinks for everyone.

On Christmas Eve I usually get a shout - where’s the wrapping paper, gift bags, cellotape?
Just expecting it to be there.

I’m just tired, frazzled, under appreciated and much as I love my family, I think they just don’t appreciate the work and time involved. Just a hug to say thanks mum, would be so nice. ☹️

sodapop Sat 22-Dec-18 12:35:55

Prepare them early next year and have a fair division of labour. If they don't do their allotted task then it remains not done. Takes a fair amount of will power and determination. Alternatively buy in the Christmas lunch.
Good luck tchsmile

lemongrove Sat 22-Dec-18 12:53:35

Good advice from soda
I never have stressed about Christmas even when working and with a family years ago, and certainly not nowadays.
Not because I use spread sheets or lists or am super organised.It’s a day! Christmas dinner is just a roast meal that we’ve all done thousands of times.
Order from Amazon, and encourage your family to have wish lists on it.Set aside an hour or so to wrap presents, ditto cards, and delegate with your DH.tchsmile

GrandmaMoira Sat 22-Dec-18 12:55:44

Smiley - I do agree with you. I found it very difficult whilst still working and not being able to take much time off but it is easier now. Missing my late DH, is not just the emotional thing at Christmas but he did share the load.

Charleygirl5 Sat 22-Dec-18 13:02:35

Next year could you not take yourself off somewhere and leave them all to it? They may appreciate you a lot more.

dragonfly46 Sat 22-Dec-18 13:04:20

There is a film about this where all the wives go on strike for Christmas and leave it up to the men folk. Of course it all works out in the end as films do but they do have a point and not just at Christmas.

aggie Sat 22-Dec-18 13:05:02

I miss OH today , he got the veg and prepared them and peeled potatoes on Christmas Eve , then he sat and welcomed people till he got fed up . He then had the luxury of disappearing without a word !

Anja Sat 22-Dec-18 13:06:21

It’s a bit like a BBQ isn’t it. We do all the hard bits,

felice Sat 22-Dec-18 13:23:21

DBF was visiting recently, he was telling his partner about all the lovely Christmases and parties WE had enjoyed when he lived here. His partner was watching my face,,,, when he finished I reminded him of one of the times he was raving about.
Christmas Eve; full 4 course dinner for some of his colleagues and partners, Scottish style, Lamb Broth, Smoked Salmon Mousse, Haggis stuffed Grouse and all the trimmings, Scotch Trifle. great,,, one partner a vegetarian and the other Greek Orthodox and fasting on Christmas Eve, no meat or dairy. he also invited them and hour later than told to.
Christmas day;; sudden invite by him, at church to 10 people for drinks.
Lunch for 20 people,,,, the whole works.
Evening more people for drinks and 'snacks'.
Boxing day; 6 for lunch, one with dairy allergy, not told in advance.
Evening quick mention by him, "are you making supper tonight," me burst into tears and threw a roasting tin(empty) at him.

Short memory, he of course was busy pouring drinks etc, his comment was you are such a good cook I just got out of the way.
He did of course set the table, many times !!!!!!
PS I still love him dearly.

EllanVannin Sat 22-Dec-18 13:32:35

Been there, done all that and it does leave you jiggered as you sit down and ask yourself what it was all for. Because you've done the same routine for years it's expected of you to just " wave your magic wand ".

Cooking never bothered me as I had it all timed to a fine art, it was more the dishing out to 14 or more in quick succession before everything went cold.

I can admit to enjoying it up until I was 60 but after that things slowed down, no DH, relatives had gone their own ways so it was more or less time to call it a day., I still send nearly as many cards though but the same isn't expected of me as regards presents because I help towards holidays during the years now.

Because I'm on my own it still doesn't stop me from preparing roasts and other meals for myself and I have a turkey crown to cook on Monday, which includes all the trimmings etc on Tuesday-------a spin-off from my earlier family meals though still enough to feed an army.

MissAdventure Sat 22-Dec-18 13:33:39

There is a really simple solution. Stop doing it all.

Lynne59 Sat 22-Dec-18 13:42:36

I do everything except cooking the Christmas dinner - my husband does that, and always has (I could, but he chose to and has done it ever since, for 38 years).

Presents - I get everything online. Mainly Amazon, but also The Works, Debenhams and a few others. Adults get a bottle of something, a couple of books, chocolates, some shower/bath stuff, something to wear and a Groupon or Red Letter gift (usually a meal or theatre)

The children get board games, books, arts and craft things, pyjamas, an outfit each, and either doll things or Lego stuff. I wrap everything when it arrives (each person has their own wrapping paper).

Food shopping - I go to a 24-hour large Tesco, at about 4am, and get the lot in one go (the place is empty at that time).

Cards - I buy charity ones for all the neighbours and work colleagues. I do the family ones on Funky Pigeon. I only post 3 cards to friends. I no longer have any uncles and aunties alive.

The table - I buy disposable cloths to put on top of the linen cloth. Paper serviettes. I put all the plates, dishes, saucepans, etc., in the dishwasher.

Drinks - we leave out bottles of wines and beers, with glasses, and let people get their own. As I buy each adult a bottle of whisky or something similar as a present, we don't buy any spirits to have here.

All things considered, I'm very organised. I also have to do all of the above for the day centre I run twice a week - as well as arrange a Santa and some entertainment.

FlexibleFriend Sat 22-Dec-18 14:24:37

More fool you, start delegating or carry on being a martyr. Doh!

nanasam Sat 22-Dec-18 14:38:31

I'm finding that the older I get the more worried I become that I'll forget something. I've had to write lists of jobs and shopping and reminders of when to take stuff out of the freezer. I have a spreadsheet for the menus and another for the ingredients and I'm constantly thinking 'have I got this?' or 'have I forgotten that?' It used to work really well and I was super-organised (I've catered for about 40 Christmases with no problems) so I'm thinking it must be down to getting older and losing confidence. As I said to the supervisor in Asda 'I think I'm going to get myself invited over to DDs next year!'

Gonegirl Sat 22-Dec-18 14:41:11

I do feel for you Smiley4, and I know just what you mean. It's tired me out this year. Can only suggest in future keep everything to the minimum. Tell them you are buying just one present for everyone. Buy early and wrap immediately. Only send cards to people you really care about. Use readymade, and ready rolled pastry (amazing stuff). Just do little bits at a time.

Have a minimised Christmas. Tell everyone beforehand.

And definitely do the grocery and gift shopping online.

Make time to enjoy it yourself. Just stop being frazzled.Learn to say "sod it" quite often.

Gonegirl Sat 22-Dec-18 14:42:54

nanasam I know my daughter would have us all at her's like a shot. But I just can't let go. And probably selfish. Sigh.

Gonegirl Sat 22-Dec-18 14:43:26

....that's probably selfish...

lemongrove Sat 22-Dec-18 14:48:11

.....especially with a glass of flavoured gin in your hand.tchsmile

Teetime Sat 22-Dec-18 14:48:19

I 'do' Christmas because I enjoy it even though its tiring. DH will help if I ask. This year we are going to youngest daughter for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.
Smiley4 they probably do appreciate all you do but not everyone likes to talk about their feelings. Dont take it to heart and if you are tired delegate!

lemongrove Sat 22-Dec-18 14:49:09

That was to nanasam...cheers! 🥃

Smiley4 Sat 22-Dec-18 14:50:45

Thankyou for the lovely ideas and suggestions. I’ll probably be okay Christmas Day. But I’m just tired right now.
I’ve asked for help many times. One year someone whipped some cream. Yippee.
Maybe I’m just getting old. ☹️ X

Gonegirl Sat 22-Dec-18 14:54:37

Well, I know that's what it is in my case Smiley. 😅

nanasam Sat 22-Dec-18 15:13:47

hic, lemongrove CHEERS! wine, sorry no emoji for G&T
Gonegirl I know the feeling, we have more room here and (hmmm) I probably do like to be in control. However, that was really good advice you gave to Smiley, I'll buy more ready made stuff next year. I made mince pies yesterday with sweet crust pastry, it took me all afternoon to make 18, cost twice as much as if I'd bought them and I'm making DHs life a misery because he wants to eat them!

Do we all do that? Not allow the Christmas food to be eaten before the big day, then try to force feed the guests to get rid of them. 23rd December - 'no, you can't have that, it's for Christmas'. 25th December -'come on, eat up, it's all got to go' Utter madness in our house!

lemongrove Sat 22-Dec-18 15:16:34

Oh, let the poor man have a few with a cuppa nanasamgrin
My DH eats them as soon as they’re out of the oven ( and hovers about waiting for that event.)

nanasam Sat 22-Dec-18 15:20:01

I've had to limit him to 2 a day, lemon otherwise we won't have any left! I couldn't bear looking at him with his spanked puppy face.