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10 things that always happen on Christmas Day.

It’s a universally acknowledged truth that although we all celebrate Christmas Day in different ways, there are some events that, regardless of location, faith or age, we will all share.

The problem with Christmas Day, especially as an adult, is that there is an awful lot of pressure and expectation to have an amazing day. Yet usually, that expectation alone just causes more stress and infighting. Whose house should we go to for lunch? Who’s bringing what? Is my fuckwit of an ex brother-in-law going to be there because if he is, I don’t want to be there. That kind of thing.

This year, we will be having a large family Christmas for the first time in years but I have experienced enough of them in my time to know that at least one, if not all of following, you will identify with as a typical family Christmas.

Let’s see how many apply to you.

1. There will be a present-related injury 

This will almost certainly be as a result of a skateboard. There will also be at least one head collision and also almost definitely, a period or time where you aren’t quite sure if someone has broken a hand (or a leg).

2. There is a martyr.

This is generally somebody’s mother. She toils away to have lunch prepared just right and absolutely refuses help from anyone else (especially her daughter-in-law.) You’ve probably heard a variation of the following: “Oh no dear, you sit down and have a drink, enjoy your day, I’ll be fine in here lovingly preparing a hot dinner on a 40 degree day in what is basically a furnace while you guys swim and be merry!” Passive aggressiveness at its finest.

3. Insufficient Batteries.

There is ALWAYS a battery issue. Even if you’ve taken every precaution, there is always that one toy that requires a weird battery and a child is left profoundly disappointed. Nice one guys.

4. A family member is forgotten.

You know that person. That one person you ALWAYS forget is going to be there when it comes time for present unwrapping and so you head down to the only place open on Christmas day, the servo and then watch them as they fake delight at their waterproof Dolphin torch.

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5. There will be an incident that stops two members of your family communicating for at least 2 years.

Look, this may start out over a long unresolved issue or it might be a brand new one. Whatever it is, it comes into its own on Christmas day and will generally result in at least two people refusing to speak to one another, or come together again for at least two years. Once, in our family, it was over mint jelly. I wish I were kidding.

6. The toddler ALWAYS digs the wrapping paper more than the present. 

Save your cash people, tiny humans don’t care about the Baby Einstein DVD boxset. And neither should their parents. Christmas is about being together and sure it’s nice to give (and receive) but to go nuts on a 1 year old that’d rather roll around in wrapping paper and take up residence in a box, is just silly.

7. Your dad will fall asleep.

He just will.

8. Somebody always has one drink too many.

I’ll be honest. It’s usually me.

9. The Creepy uncle.

We’ve all got this relative. He’s usually harmless enough but on Christmas he goes from being a little disarming, then having one scotch too many, to totally inappropriate.

10. There is a place you just can’t be.

Life gets complicated the older we get. Suddenly Christmas day has to be negotiated. Who gets to spend which portion with whose family?  Often there is even factoring of Christmas Eve and Boxing day into these discussions, those two of course, always being considered the poor cousins to the actual main event. This leads to all kinds of heated debates or arguments and may very well be the reason for Number 5.

That there is probably the tip of the iceberg for Christmas Day issues.  It doesn’t have to be this way of course. Alternatively we could all just stay home and Skype and send each other Oxfam Goats. But that would most almost certainly take the fun out of it.

It’d be lovely this year if we all just got together, enjoyed each other’s company, watched the joy on the children’s faces and were inwardly thankful for what we already have.

So we hope your Christmas day is as action packed or relaxed as you’d like it and simply, that you get to see those people you love the most.

Merry Christmas.

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