At one point or another on Christmas day all of my children, save for J, said that Christmas was about love (for food, for family, for being together, or just for love's sake.) It was a wonderful thing to here. Christmas has always been about stuff for me, and it's been a big issue. I always wanted my Christmases to be toned down. And they were for awhile, especially when we were really involved in the Waldorf Community. I am grateful for that time, and proud of myself for all the hand made things we used to do, and maybe the fear that existed a bit in grandparents to get the children the things they really wanted to. Now the grandparents are doing what they want to do (which makes me happy, because life should be about satisfying your own needs, and not constantly worrying about satisfying someone else's requirements), we have less time for hand made, and we are not longer as Waldorf. I still see the value in having a wooden, albeit more expensive, animal and farmhouse over a plastic one as I feel the play will be warmer and more involved, it is not crucial - it is not the be all end all. What is most important is that my children know what Christmas is about - and I think we have achieved that. Parenting level: expert.
We went around to all the grandparents houses. It was chaotic. It was a lot. Our kids handled it as best as they could given the change in routine, the late bedtimes, and the influx of new and shiny things. I am glad the hoopla is over. I am excited to do Christmas pizza next year, instead of a dinner.
I am trying not to be a Grinch, I really worked on it this year. In some ways I succeeded, but I was tested in a lot of ways buy a few things, and I failed a few of those tests. I am grateful I had the support of my partners to remind me to breathe and relax and do what I needed to do to manage everything.
So from my family to your family have a wonderful rest of 2015, enjoy your entry to 2016 and be gentle on yourself and others.