Stress Free Winter Holidays
By: Brusca Law
The Holidays are here again, and when you are in the throws of a divorce of contested family law case, your anxiety levels go through the roof. Holidays are no longer the same when you must share your holiday time-sharing with another person. You must first come to terms with the concept that the holidays are not the same and will not be the same ever again. Once you do this, you may be able to get excited about the plans you are able to make. Think about the time you will have and establish new traditions. Your season for change is here and you should make the most of it with these tips below.
A few things you may want to consider when thinking about the upcoming Winter Break and Holidays:
1. Splitting the Day: Christmas Lunch and Christmas Dinner. Even if your family is known for a Christmas Lunch, you may want to consider speaking with the person hosting this year and explain to them your time-sharing constraints. Try to do this well in advance if you can, if not, do your best to see if they can move the time closer to lunch or dinner depending on what you were awarded.
2. Celebrate on the Day Before: Christmas Eve v. Christmas Day. Christmas Eve for some folks is typically when you might have celebrated Christmas anyways,--remember, you might have to change this when you have a temporary time-sharing plan in place or even a final parenting plan. The point of spending time with your families during the holidays will not be ruined because you got Christmas Eve instead of Christmas Day this year. Most holidays rotate every year, so make sure you communicate with your family what your holiday schedules look like.
3. Celebrate Christmas in July: No one wants to hear this suggestion when attorneys bring it up, because it is so random and does not sound like much fun. I have seen lots of families take this suggestion to heart and they go out of their way to celebrate Christmas in July with real flair. The kids appreciate the thought, and all of the extra time that goes into planning this one. You might want to have an artificial tree on hand to make this one happen.
4. Celebrate Christmas Starting December 1st every year: You have seen the Advent Calendars that do the countdown towards Christmas, and almost everyone is aware of the Elf on the Shelf. Start your tradition at your house now and make it a point to do it every year, sometime in the month of December, and trust me the kids will remember it.
5. Other Suggestions During the Holidays: People love to knock the US Postal Service and scoff at “snail mail”, but I am here to tell you that for those dealing with 50/50 time-sharing plans, the US Postal Service should be your best friend. Mail is probably the only way you can get to your children without a stalking injunction or getting the police involved.
Send letters to your kids about upcoming time-sharing and vacations you have planned to get them excited! (During the holidays you can send letters from Santa or an Elf.)
Send cards when they have done something great at school encouraging your kids and telling them in writing how proud you are! (During the holidays you can send Christmas Cards.)
Send care packages when they have events coming up that you cannot attend! (During the holidays you can send Advent Calendar days by mail.)
Send flowers on your kid’s birthday—this one is a big deal, I promise! (During the holidays you can send a Christmas Tree Flower Arrangement or something similar.)
The key here it to think outside of the box, and be present for your kids, and the holidays will seem so much happier for you and your family. For more information on how you can make the most of your holidays, contact attorney Lauren Roderick Brusca, of Brusca Law at 407-501-6564 and schedule your free consultation.