Originally Posted by greenemami
Just out of curiousity- for those of you who only get your dsc on Christmas Eve/Day every other year and have other kids who live with you full time, do you just celebrate Christmas a different day? Or do you celebrate Christmas twice? Just curious!
It's so great when you get those (sometimes rare) times when everyone can see things the same way and give up things they want for the sake of their kids. Congratulations!
We have always felt really strongly that my step-daughter should get a strong sense of each family's traditions and that each family should have the freedom to plan their holidays with as much flexibility as possible. When we lived near each other, we alternated years and she stayed at the "Christmas" house for the two days before and after the holiday, as well as the holiday itself. Because of the custody schedule, that generally meant she spent at least a week there, sometimes 10 days. The other family usually celebrated on a different day, and did the whole Christmas thing then (Chmas eve, Santa, Chmas morning, etc).
Now we live far apart, and she comes here for all of her winter break one year, then half of it (the half without Christmas day) the next year. Since all our kids are young, it's no problem to celebrate on an alternate day every other year (this year we will celebrate Chmas eve on the 27th and Chmas day on the 28th). She has grown up with the idea that holidays happen one day here and a different day there, so there's not any talk about the "real" Christmas day. Even when the kids can read the calendar, I suspect we will continue with that tradition. Knowing my kids and their relationship with each other, I don't think they would want to celebrate on a specific date over celebrating with the whole family together.
We do the same thing for other holidays, like her birthday and Father's day, neither of which she is ever here for. This past summer we even had Easter again in July because her little brother wanted to do an egg hunt with his big sister.
We also have a couple holidays that she is with us for on the actual day every year. My husband and I never really cared about New Year's or the 4th of July before, but now they are big holidays in our house, full of new family traditions.
Our extended families are great about our alternate holiday schedule. They find out ahead of time which day the Happy Birthday or Merry Christmas calls should come. When they heard the plan for Easter in July, my aunt saved some egg dye, my grandmother picked up some Easter goodies to save for the summer, and my brother and his family planned to join us us for "Easter" dinner. This year my parents took time off work at Thanksgiving to spend the week here while my step daughter was here. I think if we didn't get the same response from them, it would be a lot harder to mess with the calendar so much. My parents are model divorced parents, so they have loads of experience doing what works best for the kids.