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Things that Annoy Me During the Holidays

It's only a few days away from Christmas and the Undercover Mom is here to share her thoughts on the five things that drive her nuts during the holiday season.
1. "It's the most wonderful time of the year" - Come on - you know the song. It's been blasting out of your car radio since Thanksgiving. What the heck is it with radio stations and holiday music? It seems like every year the holiday tunes start playing incessantly the minute I shut off the Macy's Parade and hop into my car to buy cranberry sauce. Frankly, I've had it up to here with the 55 unique interpretations of "Frosty the Snowman." And hearing Rod Stewart doing a Julie Andrews rendition of "My Favorite Things," is pretty darn creepy. Wasn't he the "Do You Think I'm Sexy Guy?" Come on pop stars, rap artists, rockers, crooners and country singers. If you don't have a new CD to release, do not torture us with your own musical take on the "Little Drummer Boy."
2. Wrapped up in Gift Wrap. Since I'm a last minute shopper, I wind up frantically searching for gift wrap the day before Christmas and the pickings are always slim. Why do we all have to wrap presents anyway? Between trying to find the damn scissors, to rationing out the scotch tape because I forgot to pick up another roll, I've gotten to the point that I'm about to picket those wrapping paper companies. In fact, I've actually come up with an ingenious way to wrap a gift without having to cut, tape or glue a thing. Buy a nice shopping bag with some holiday decorations on it, stuff in some tissue paper, plop in the gift (remove the price tag of course), sign the little card the bag comes with, and voila, you've got a present. Same thing with boxes - a pretty box with a bow is always the way to go. Stop chopping down trees to make wrapping paper. It only winds up in the garbage anyway.
3. Holiday tips. How many people are on your tip list this year? The mailman, the paper delivery guy, the garbage men, the landscaper, the guy at the gas station, the parking attendant, and on and on and on. Here's a tip - stop expecting everybody and their uncle to tip you for doing your job. If you do something above and beyond the call of duty - like deliver my paper with a sugar free vanilla skim a latte, then you my friend, deserve something special.
4. Photo Card Guilt. Once again, none of my friends will know what my kids look like this year unless we've actually gone to visit them. We do not have a mailing list and we haven't posed for a family portrait except when we were getting our passports. Thank you to all of our friends who have sent lovely cards and photos. Another year has passed and we still refuse to create and send holiday cards.
5. Pedestrian Traffic. If you work in midtown Manhattan then you know exactly what I'm talking about. It literally drives me to the point of insanity when I rush out of my office to catch my commuter train and get caught in the middle of a pedestrian snarl along Fifth Avenue. Yes - this year that Cartier gift box that opens up and plays music along with a light show is pretty cool. But, if the light is green, make up your mind and cross the street. I only give myself 14 minutes to catch my train and this holiday foot traffic totally drags down my Metronorth arrival time.
I know I may sound bitter - but trust me, it's all in jest. Tonight when I sang "Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer" with my kids at dinner, I had a great time watching them sing along with me. But maybe that's what the holidays are all about - enjoy your family and friends, take some much needed time off, open those gifts at home, but most of all, stay out of my way.

Posted in: Blog, Undercover Mom on 12/17/2006


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