It’s great to be home for the holidays with my mom, dad, sister, brother-in-law, wife, mother-in-law, and son. Coming home to my parents means I surrender my parenthood at the door and become a kid again. I eat my weight in turkey stuffing, I sleep in, and I get to enjoy my old toys (I mean my son gets to enjoy them) — my mom has a closet dedicated to my toys (and my sister’s toys). She also has all my old clothes and notes from university. Don’t shake your head, some of these items have come in quite handy (like the oversized Bart Simpson pin).
Do you ever notice how rules and routines around the house never change over the years? Here’s some of the routines I experience when I go home:
1) Repetitive Expressions: Not a meal goes by without hearing “Help yourself” and “Make yourself at home.” Now… my wife and I have been together for 6 years and we both feel at home and are not afraid to help ourselves, but it doesn’t matter. It never matters.
Another great expression introduced this year is, “Don’t forget to unplug the car.” No… my parents don’t drive an electric vehicle. It’s -35 degrees Celsius here with the windchill and cars need to be plugged in so that they start. I’m not sure how I’d forget to unplug it, but I guess people do. I think my parents are afraid I’m going to drive off with the house.
2) Backlash Over Borrowing the Car:
“Dad, can my wife and I and our son please use the car to go to visit my friend?”
“I might need it to go to the mall.”
“But you already went to the mall today.”
3) The TV Lineup: My father’s TV lineup goes something like this:
- The Price is Right
- Family Feud
- Judge Judy
- Wheel of Fortune
- + 2 or 3 other judge shows that I don’t know the name of
My dad loves to watch people win money by chance or win it in court. As long as money is won, my dad is satisfied.
4) Intense Discussion over Who Should Visit Whom: Dukes up! Time for the annual one-sided argument about whether or not we should go to the farm to visit our relatives —
“They can come here this year!”
“I refuse to go!”
“Well then… you guys can go to the farm without me.”
My dad, who I will now refer to as “ClassicDad”, just really loves his routines and his way of doing things. I can’t blame him. Routines are comforting. Here’s a lovely picture drawn by ClassicDad for my sister of us coming home for the holidays:
You’re the best, ClassicDad!
So those are a few of my stories about coming home for the holidays. I’d love to hear some of your stories.