Christmas is a time for giving…and loving…and joy-to-the-world-ing. It’s also that time of the year when you are forced to spend an entire day with your family – which, for many of us, can be quite traumatic. Apart from the back catalogue of unsaid niggles between family members, there’s often that moment you unwrap a present from your sister and have to pretend it’s exactly what you wanted (“a vanilla scented candle…wow!”)
The traditional Aussie coping mechanism for dealing with the pain of Christmas Day is, as we all know, getting completely smashed (or as your niece would say, “totes wasted”) but we thought we’d offer some healthier alternatives for surviving December 25:
1. Carefully remove the bad jokes from the crackers and replace with spiritual affirmations…then watch your big brother’s face when he’s forced to read his (“a river of compassion washes away my anger and replaces it with love”).
2. Have a Buddhist-monks-chanting CD on standby to play in the living room for the moment your mother starts to sweat and indicates stress levels are on the rise over the turkey timings.
3. Mix it up. Offer to bring the turkey this year and surprise your extended family by rocking up with a vegan alternative (Dad and Grandpa just love a turkey shaped pumpkin stuffed with wild rice, coriander and lentils?).
4. Or for some fun, bring this Turkey Tinner as a lunch option:
5. If things are getting really bad, fake an allergic reaction to cranberry sauce in order to exit the family function early (or train your child to feign some kind of illness).
6. Purchase some Chakra Balancing Mist and don’t hesitate to spray it in Auntie Nancy’s face when she asks whether you are “Still single?”
7. Download the latest “I Am Calm” meditation app so you can retreat to the toilet and breathe in the good vibes/out the bad ones when your father asks when you’re going to get a “real job” and why you haven’t yet come up with a “five year plan”.
8. Pack an emergency green juice to wash down anything unfortunate that you will be forced to eat (“Another fruit mince pie for you, lovey?”)
9. Put on a Michael Buble Christmas album. It has been the highest selling Christmas album in Australia for 7 years in a row so someone will like you for it and it will strike up a conversation that isn’t family drama for at least 20 mins (Wikipedia him on Christmas eve for some intel).
10. If all else fails, whip out your laptop and insist that everyone watches That Sugar Film! 😉
Happy Christmas everyone, may it be full of joy, calm family connections and not require any of the above points.