Is your family Christmas a snooze-fest?  Do you threaten to sneak in a flask every year?  Do you beg your wife not to make you go?  Well, you, my friend, are not alone.  Unbeknownst to me, there are people who go to family holiday celebrations where people discuss the food, the weather, and aches and pains.  That, my friends, sounds painful, but not to worry.  I have the remedy.

This is the Christmas that you start new traditions!  What can you do?  What can’t you do?  (Oh, for the record, you probably should not call someone batshit crazy or give them a steaming bag of crap, but otherwise, it’s pretty open.)

My family certainly should not be the poster-children for Christmas traditions, but then again, nobody’s ever said we had a dull holiday, either.  If you can top cootie spray, redneck shower caps, and duct taped laser-pointers then by all means, bring it on!  If you can’t, maybe it’s time to ponder adding something new to the itinerary.  It couldn’t hurt, could it?  (Unless, you’re going with a Festivus theme, but that’s so not my scene.)  Instead, consider these:

*Change up opening gifts.  At our house, no one is above wrapping a piece of paper in 15 boxes for someone to open, nor are we opposed to duct taping something for an exercise-induced unveiling, or sending you on a scavenger hunt to a cooler outside!

*Give gag gifts.  Listen, nobody wants to be uncomfortable when you give grandma a thong, but we are all about giving a bullet-proof vest to the family member who got dumped by the crazy bar fly down the street because he dodged a bullet there!  We also love it when someone gets 7 different stocking caps – one for each day of the week because they had a semi-traumatic haircut situation back in September that people are still discussing (it rivaled a mullet – that’s all I’m sayin’).  These are things you have to laugh about or at least make fun of and if people aren’t laughing, hand them another beer!

*For the record, fondu is never a fondon’t.  That’s a Christmas Eve meal waiting to happen.  Grease, wieners, hot cheese, and chocolate for dipping your cherries – that screams entertainment!

*I’m also a big fan of keepsakes, especially if they involve photos of family members wearing Texas-size sunglasses or sporting boxer shorts up to their hairy man boobs.  I recommend a funny picture time-capsule photo box.  Every year on Christmas, whip out the camera and take photos to throw in the box.  Every year after, you can grab out the box and look at all the old ones and remember the good times and make fun of people’s clothes, hair, and ex-boyfriends and add fresh new ones to the box of laughter.

*Or why not put those new Uggs, Wrangler jeans, and Underoos to good use?  Start your first ever Christmas fashion show.  Have the whole family try on their new duds and if you wanna doll it up good, add some funky belts, hats, and socks ala the thrift store just to make sure everyone has something to try on.  Nothing says the holidays like Property of the Beaver Nation t-shirts and sequined squirrel scarves.  Post it to Facebook and the boring people will be jealous of your good time.  Forget Victoria’s Secret’s angels.  You’ve got grandma knee-highs and turtleneck dickies.  Who could compete with that?

*Finally, what would the list be without a holiday activity involving alcohol?  Yes, there’s always time for drunken Christmas caroling in the neighborhood.  Who wouldn’t love that?  But you better stick to the easy songs like Jingle Bells and Grandma Got Run over by a Reindeer; no one wants to hear you slaughter Silver Bells.  There’s a good chance somebody singin’ about silver balls instead and Old Woman Jones might be concerned her hearing aids aren’t working right or Old Man Jones might get ideas.  Just sayin’.

Sure, you could make it a tradition to sit and stare at each other or dread seeing your family, but wouldn’t this be more fun?  Exactly.  So muscle up those creative thoughts and have a Merry Christmas 2012!



Does your family have a fun tradition you want to share or do you have an opinion about my suggestions?  Go ahead.  Add it to the comments section.   Either way, Happy Holidays from the Bolton Carleys.