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21578917_08ca661e47_mSomewhere, someone is having a perfect Christmas, filled with chestnuts roasting and sleigh bells ringing…

Screw ’em.

Most of us are having just the opposite: a nutcrackin’ nightmare of anger, hurt feelings, evil in-laws, and carbs beyond counting. A time when grudges grow and gasses pass. A time of maxed-out credit cards and a ham that the vegetarians are ready to hurl through the frosty window.

Evil little brothers, pregnant tattooed sisters, horny dogs, and cross-dressing dads – they’re all here, ready to spread their Christmas cheer.

So untangle the lights, spill some eggnog, and gather ’round the place where happier families would have a piano.

Let’s sing to the tune of  “O Come All Ye Faithful”…

O come meet the family, bad breeding triumphant;
O come meet the family dysfunctional.
Come and behold them. As they brag and fight and whine.
For it’s a celebration, of Christmas aggravation.
And if you’re no relation, just thank the Lord.

Ok, now I have to admit that I didn’t write this. I WISH I could take credit for it, because it makes a dysfunctional family sound a lot lighter. And it made me smile. How about you?

Will you still be smiling on Christmas Day when you are spending time with your family? I hope you are. But if you aren’t, here is something to consider.

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It’s only one day. Make the best of it. If memories of family holidays past are less than desirable, switch the channel.

That’s right. Choose a new program. Take a new perspective.

You can’t change these people, but you can change how you look at them.

If your mean aunt is lecturing you again about how you chose the wrong career, you might be annoyed and want to tell her what to do with her advice. Or, you might ask yourself, “What’s another way I could look at this?”

You could choose to see her in a more positive light; “She really cares about me and only means well.”

Or use this strategy. Accentuate her rottenness; “She doesn’t have a life poor thing and that is why she has so much energy to spend on criticizing other people.” You might end up feeling something different for that aunt of yours.

And if you do react badly you can still switch your channel. Don’t feel badly about how you may have acted. Tell yourself that you will do better next time and don’t hold on to the feelings. Don’t beat yourself up. Your aunt can do that better right? Ask yourself what you have learned.

Usually when someone is criticizing you, if you feel a reaction there is some learning there for you. If there is no learning, then it will fly right past you.

If this does change things for you, then you will be stronger than the day before. Stronger for the next time.

And if none of this works at least you will have kept yourself busy and before you know, it will be time to go home.

This quote from Joubert Joseph is what inspired this post.

“He who has not the weakness of friendship has not the strength.”

I wish all of you the best Christmas that you can SEE for yourself. And take the best of that into the new year.

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Introduction and revised lyrics to O Come All Ye Faithful was taken from The Dysfunctional Family Christmas Songbook, written by John Boswell and Leonore Skenazy.

Photo credits: Kittenagogo’s photostream from Flickr.com

So, oh come all ye faithful and share your comments. Maybe myself or my readers can help you shed some light on a rotten relative!

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Luny Landing won first place in the Master Team Sculptor’s category in the World Championship sand sculpture event. This event was hosted in Harrison Hot Springs in British Columbia, Canada.

Artists from around the world went to great lengths to build these sculptures to withstand the elements and remain show worthy for the public and of course, the judges.

From the most artistic design to the smallest, most intricate detail, this show of more than 70 sculptures was a pleasure to see. It was quite clear that these artists had realized and embraced their passion for creativity.

Please continue reading on page 2.

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“Life is a cycle. A cycle is a circle. And in a circle all things return to where they began.”

This is a quote I heard a Cherokee elder say many times. As I was preparing to publish this post, this quote suddenly popped into my mind. I haven’t heard it or thought of it for over 10 years.

And so, this post has swung into a new direction and I’m going with it. I hope you will get on and go for the ride with me.

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This is dedicated to my mom and my grandmother. Both have passed on, but a story my mom told me inspired this.

When my mom was in public school she was teased a lot about her last name, which was Sparrow.

Her mother loved to dress her up and much to her embarrassment, made her wear a beret.

Once particular day, a kid grabbed her hat off her head and ran around in circles taunting, “Sparrow in the treetop! Sparrow in the treetop!” My mom who was quite a tomboy, chased this kid, caught him and beat him up. She shared this story often and we always had a good chuckle over it.

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