Same battles, different year.
I say, "I'm gonna send cards!" Doesn't happen.
A year later, I say, "Now that I have a cute baby, I'm DEFINITELY going to send cards!" Doesn't happen.
This year, I say, "I'm going to FINALLY, REALLY send cards so people know I and my child do exist and are, in fact, still members of the family." Nope.
I say, "I'm going to plan and budget and get everyone a nice gift." I don't plan, don't budget, and people try to act happy about their cookies and socks.
A year later, immediate family agrees, "No one will buy anything over $40 for anyone else." Then, I get so much crap I'm in a funk of guilt and shame until June.
This year, we vow to only bestow unto others functional, thoughtful gifts, so I'll make and freeze my best meat sauce for relatives and they will, in turn, spend way too much money on me again and I'll be forced to feel like I'm living on hand-outs.
Why do the holidays do this to us? Year after year, we get up our hopes and expectations for the "ideal" Christmas to come to pass and every year, it doesn't! I'm not one for getting all worked up about the holidays but one, just one year I'd like to feel like a real Mom/Wifey/Benevolent Neighbor & Relative and get shit baked, wrapped, and in the mail on time.
Not this year, I guess. I think I'll just get a bunch of oven-ready heure d'oeuvres from Trader Joe's, give people specialty bars of chocolate in make-shift gift baskets, then duck out for a run during nap & the 18th run of "A Christmas Story," and call it a day. As far as cards go.. hopefully the family I'm "friends" with on Facebook will pass the word that we are well and wish all of our other blood relatives a wondrous holiday.
Christmas, I am no match for you and all of your... Christmasyness.