How do your families feel about your beliefs?
With my in-laws, it usually doesn't come up. Dh's mom has been all over the map religiously but has been new age for a really long time, so talking about shamanism or chakras doesn't phase her. His dad has been a-religious until recently when he rejoined the Worldwide Church of God (have you seen the Plain Truth magazine? We had it coming to our house when I was growing up. It's the one that "exposes" major "Christian holidays" as pagan (sic.) and advises true Christians to abandon them.
) Still, we don't talk about religion much with him.
My mother is "don't ask don't tell" mode, although she has checked books out of the library for me (she works there) on Goddesses, which she had seen on display. No books on Paganism though.
My dad is the issue. I have been telling him since high school that I am not a Christian, but he refuses to hear, and when he does actually hear, he refuses to remember, so we have the same debates over and over again. I told him I was Pagan several Easters ago while coloring eggs with him. I just couldn't bear his benevolent lecture on JC again. That is not what the holiday is about for me. Suffice to say the ordeal was very uncomfortable and ended the egg fun. We haven't actually talked about it since, but he looks very grim whenever we are going "camping" or ask them to watch the kids when we go out. He assumes my son's beliefs are his to mold whenever I am not around. I had told him explicitly that he is free to tell my son about his beliefs, but not try and convert him.
It's a hard situation, because I otherwise have a good relationship with my dad and we agree on many things. It is easier to rock the boat with someone you don't value or who you think is really going to "get it" the first time. Like I said- he does this self-protecting memory block and I am weary of causing the same shock and horror over and bloody over again.
We don't include family in our holidays, but go up to Circle or spend it with other Pagans (makes sense.) We join my family on Easter and Christmas and I am comfortable. After all, just as the Plain Truth said, they are celebrating my holidays.
My in-laws and we have created an alternative to Christmas. When my dh was growing up they were in the WCG and did not celebrate xmas easter etc. While ds was little they did a tree and stockings, but it didn't last. Now we have "Gifts on the Chair Day" which we celebrate New Years Day, with peas and greens and ham and, you guessed it, gifts on the chair. This past holiday they designed an iron-on tablecloth with clip art of chairs and gifts!
I have written enough!