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Christmas (i know I know)

(33 Posts)
FreeSpirit89 Fri 09-May-14 20:14:47

Hey all,

Me and DP are looking at a court order for extra access over the holiday periods due to being unable to agree to any with DSDs mum.

What do you with Christmas? When does Santa come? Dp wants too have Santa come on Boxing Day morning so he can have an normal Christmas with her.

So can I ask how you deal with blended family Christmases with step children and your own children


MuttonCadet Fri 09-May-14 20:18:37

We have never had Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, but every News Years Eve.

(She left DH for OM, just in case that's brought up).

Good luck, you can try an alternate, I hope you have more luck than us.

GemmaTeller Fri 09-May-14 20:26:34

We never had DSD on christmas day so we used to have a separate christmas day just for us four as near to christmas as we could ( that included pantomime, stockings, presents, big 'christmas dinner etc)

All my family used to make sure DSD's presents were with us in time for our 'christmas'

We look on it as having two christmas's - one with the kids and one on our own.

alita7 Fri 09-May-14 20:44:40

we have 3- 4 Christmases.

Dsd 1 and 2 spend Christmas eve and day with their mum and her family then come to us.

Dsd 3 varies but now she lives with us she will spend the days before and Xmas eve day with her mums family and come to us for Xmas eve dinner with my parents then Xmas at my grandparents then boxing day with dps family at his aunts then the day after with just his parents then she'd go to her mums family for a day or two. she can't spend Xmas with her mums family so we work around it.

alita7 Fri 09-May-14 20:46:05

oh and dsd 1 and 2 don't believe in santa but dsd 3 understands that he comes several times but splits the presents between places.

BigPigLittlePig Fri 09-May-14 21:19:19

Up til this year just gone, santa has visited for a 2nd time on boxing day morning (we have dsd from xmas night). Now that my dd is getting older, we have rethought things, so last yr, santa came on xmas day like he's supposed to (!) but left a letter to dsd to say sorry he couldnt come twice, but well done for being patient and waiting to open it. Do you have any other children? I suppose that would impact on decision.

brdgrl Fri 09-May-14 21:21:39

Slightly different, but -
I normally take DD away for Christmas, to see my family overseas, while DH and the DSC stay here. So DD and I have Christmas (and Santa comes) on the usual day, as do the DSC/DH. Then when we come back we have "Second Christmas". It's actually worked out really well, because the older kids have been able to maintain their own set of childhood (they are teens traditions and do things 'their way' on the first Chistmas, while 'Second Christmas' has been all new for us as a family together, and we've been able to shape it to be what we want. But we'd never try to pass Second Christmas off as the 'real' one - instead it is a wonderful extra thing. It's all in how you frame it...

I really, really don't think that you can have Santa come on Boxing Day, though. Not if you want to encourage the kids to believe in Santa. I'm sympathetic to your DH, but I do think it would be a bit selfish to 'move Santa' or have Santa come twice. Even little kids know this isn't 'right' and it will end up ruining the thing for her - especially if this continues as she gets older. Instead, why not have Santa leave things at his house as well, on Christmas eve, and let DD find them when she arrives at his? And make up new Boxing Day traditions that will make that day a big deal too. Turn this into a virtue, not a curse.

alita7 Fri 09-May-14 22:02:16

Depends really dsd had santa come at her mums dads, at my parents and on boxing day (her mum wanted to do a sack, my mum got excited about the idea of us doing one together and dps parents did one) and she didn't bat an eyelid because she's always had santa come more than once, she doesn't notice the flaws in the story. I don't know if this is due to her learning disabilities but I'd like to think it's just cos it's what she's used to. I actually think she'd of got upset if he hadn't come to each Xmas.

so it depends if they're used to more than one santa trip. And how well the know the santa story.

TheMumsRush Sat 10-May-14 06:21:23

When we pick them up boxing morning, that is our "Xmas eve". They way they get the excitement and anticipation (that's the best bit IMO) and then on the 27th is our exams day smile. This year we have them though for 24-26 grin

purplebearbiscuit Sat 10-May-14 12:37:50

Alternate years Xmas Eve though to 1pm Xmas day, then 1pm Xmas day through to end Boxing Day.

purplebearbiscuit Sat 10-May-14 12:38:32

Santa comes to. Both houses on Xmas Eve so she has to wait for one lot of santas presents at lunch time

littlegreenlight1 Sat 10-May-14 13:22:48

Me and ex h have them alternate xmas. When its his turn he takes them xmas eve and drops back boxing day, when its mine, he takes them boxing day.
my bf made this arrangement with his ex too and we have the kids the same xmas so this year we will have all 5 kids and it will be a big day focussed on the kids.
Last year we spent it with my family (no other kids) and it was a delightful grown ups pi$$ up.
Works for all of us. Im not very sentimental about christmas.
Oh and when its not my year like last year, they come back boxing day morning, we do presents (that Santa delivered on xmas day) and then we have a slap up meal at my mums. Its tradition :D

FreeSpirit89 Sat 10-May-14 14:19:58

Thank you everyone it helps.

smile just unsure what to do for the best x

Groovee Sat 10-May-14 14:34:14

A family member went back to court after his ex said he wouldn't have his son for his weekend because of Christmas despite it being a court order.

The judge decided that their son should go 3pm Christmas Day to 3pm Boxing Day. They have adhered to it since.

ProfessorBranestawm Sat 10-May-14 14:35:50

We have never had DSCs on Xmas day - we have what I suppose you'd call an Xtra Xmas grin some time in the Xmas holidays, where we would replicate it. By the time we were together they didn't believe in Santa though so never had to deal with that issue.

It works really well for us - they didn't want to leave their mum/nan alone, and we have always respected their decision. They see it as a bonus anyway, they get a whole extra special day - an extra lovely dinner, an extra morning of present opening etc.

We have young DCs together now and DSCs are teens/adults so there is more of a difference between Xmas on the 25th and the Xtra Xmas (which can be at any time during the holidays, nowadays it mainly depends on eldest's work shifts) - the latter is more grown up, lots of games, new traditions like a big family cinema/pizza trip and a home made quiz and that sort of thing.

I know lots of people who have been surprised that we don't insist on alternate years and all that stuff but there's no one right way to do this stepfamily thing is there. Access arrangements have been totally informal for years now anyway, it's all very chilled and happy. smile

alita7 Sat 10-May-14 15:24:29

I feel very lucky in that dp always has had his dds on boxing day and now dsd 3 on Christmas too, so this means we can go to my family (with dsd 3 who last year loved doing something different and getting to sleep in my old bedroom) on Christmas day and then have his family Christmas on boxing day smile

ladygracie Sat 10-May-14 18:23:43

I have the kids every Christmas & they go to their dad & step-mum's on Boxing Day. Their choice. They have a younger sister & I have decided that this year they should go to their dad's for Christmas Day. We haven't discussed it yet.

MuttonCadet Sat 10-May-14 23:40:19

Well how incredibly generous of you grace. I'm sure everyone will be thrilled to fit in with your plans when you decide to finally tell them.

Nice that your children appear to be your property. hmm

alita7 Sun 11-May-14 00:16:36

Mutton my impression was that gracie was thinking it would be nice for her kids to be able to spend Christmas with their new? young sibling... rather than for her to get all funny about it being her year like some mums would regardless of the situation. I'm assuming it's just a suggestion and if they want to stay with her they can?

riverboat1 Sun 11-May-14 11:12:39

For us there are no other children to worry about except DSS. Also DP and his ex have a good relationship with no animosity and no fixed contact order, everyone is prepared to flexible around Xmas arrangements. So those two things make life a lot easier.

Another good thing for us is that we live in France, where there's about a 50/50 split between families do the main Xmas meal and presents on Xmas Eve night, and families who do it all on the 25th. So usually DP and I have DSS until Xmas day morning (having done our main celebration on Xmas eve night) and then hand him over to his mum for his celebrations with her on Xmas day itself. And no-one feels like they're not getting the 'real' Christmas.

The complicating factor for us is that both DP and I are only children, so both our sets of parents want to see us at Xmas, yet both our parents live hundreds of miles away - in opposite directions, one set being in a different country! And given that we need to hand over DSS to his mum at some point on or around Xmas day, it's very difficult to actually go and spend Xmas at either of our parents' houses. Though we have done this in the past it just hardly seems worth all the hours of driving, just to spend one or two days there and then end up driving back in the middle of the night on the 24th or 25th.

I must say, Christmas to me is now a constant source of logistical stress to me more than any happy anticipation or pleasure.

ArrivedAtPanicStation Mon 12-May-14 01:22:21

We never have DSD for Christmas day. So we have her from boxing day till just after new years day.

We have Christmas like normal for DD on Xmas day then when DSD comes down we do it all over again. Xmas dinner, crackers and a big fuss. We also hold a few of DDS presents back do she can open some with DSD.

The set up works really well for us.

swissfamily Mon 12-May-14 06:47:53

DH has a court order whereby one parent has DSD from 24- 27th Dec one year while the other has 31st Dec - 2nd Jan. Then the next year they switch.

That's the non-negotiable bit of their arrangement. The reality is that to make things simpler (we live a long way from DSD) usually one parent has from the end of term to the 27th Dec and the other has from the 27th to the beginning of term.

DH had DSD for Xmas last year so he'll have her for NY this year. We'll do a family lunch with DSD for DH's side of the family the weekend before Xmas which DSD will come to and DH's family will exchange gifts with her then. Her presents from "Santa" will be left on her bed for her to open when she arrives on the 27th.

It's been this way for the last 5 years now and works well.

heidiwine Mon 12-May-14 07:42:54

We have never had DSDs for Christmas and, since the divorce 6 years ago, Santa has visited them at their mums who 'arranges for Santa to bring everything to mums'. So DP only gets the pleasure of Xmas presents if he is at his ex wife's house. We don't have a separate Xmas. We tried it last year and DSDs freaked out, were both hugely upset because 'mum will be angry'.
Xmas is by far the most stressful time of the year for me - it is awful - every single year DPs ex causes something to happen that spoils the whole thing (for the kids too). We thought it would be better last year as she has someone permanent in her life... If anything it was worse (and DP was told that he wasn't welcome on the day).
This year I'm putting my foot down and insisting that we go away.
Don't think that helps you OP but do sort something out that is best for kids and you guys! DP didn't and we're still living with the consequences of him going with the flow in the first couple of years!

swissfamily Mon 12-May-14 07:58:15

Sorry OP I should add, we made the decision a couple of years ago not to re-do Xmas on the years when we didn't have DSD. Her Mum doesn't do it either. She just has a normal Christmas day at whichever parents' house she's at. We don't do a stocking for her on the years she's not here because "Santa leaves your stocking at whatever house you're sleeping at on Xmas Eve".

It seems fairer for the other kids involved that way (we have 3 younger DC here and Mum has two younger DC at hers). It was felt it was a bit harsh on the other kids if DSD was effectively getting two Christmases each year (she is the type of child who would boast about it to all the others though).

I wouldn't be that happy about moving Christmas Day to Boxing Day just so DSD got to do Xmas with us every year personally (the way I see it that's life with blended families) - but I suppose things would be different if DH a) didn't get to have DSD every other Christmas and b) Mum wasn't on the same page as DH with regards to it all.

supermariossister Mon 12-May-14 08:24:20

do Christmas every other year as normal, the year they are not with us ds has his normal Christmas eve/Christmas day. dsc come to us thst night and then we do it again for boxing day. got a roasting on here for it but I keep ds some presents back for the boxing day and he gets a present on his bed again/stocking but I don't mind so much since my stockings only have choc,bouncy balls, magazines and stuff like that.not sure how it will work as everyone gets older. from reading on here and seeing others situations we are very lucky to be able to have alternate years so we make the best of them for everyone as much as we can

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