Hey! I made up a new holiday, and I’d like to invite all of you to celebrate with me. Here’s a little poem, titled “The Best Day of the Year,” to tell you all about it:
You’ve cooked, you’ve cleaned,
you’ve plotted, you’ve schemed
to make the holiday bright.
Now? You’re tired.
Up to your elbows, you’re mired
in things that were meant to delight.
You need a break,
a drink (and a cake).
Some bad TV wouldn’t hurt.
Let the family eat leftovers
while you dine on Russell Stovers.
All kid requests you divert.
“You got new toys yesterday!”
“No, there’s no cooking today!”
The car keys remain in your handbaggy.
No shower for you,
no clothes except pj’s, it’s true.
Your hair can go limp and saggy
It’s December 26,
time to get your one-day fix
of being the Lordess of the Couch.
The remote is yours.
Into your glass, the wine pours.
You’ve earned your day off, all could vouch.
Ladies: Moms’ Day Off is December 26!
Are you excited?
I’ve been celebrating (or attempting to celebrate) Moms’ Day Off on December 26 for about eight years now. I don’t always pull it off. Sometimes the calendar is beyond my control, but I try like hell.
I created this personal holiday years ago when I realized that from around December 22 until December 25, I sat down approximately three times. By the 26th, I was pooped.
The first time I attempted to celebrate Moms’ Day Off, I had a 13-month-old and a 6-year-old (and a husband who was presumably someplace in the house). It took me literally four and a half hours to watch Julie & Julia, but I still count it as one of the greatest days of my life. In fact, to this day I have a somewhat Pavlovian response to that movie. As soon as it comes on, I start looking around for the red wine.
My kids have grown to loathe this day. Full disclosure: It probably doesn’t help matters much that I lord it over them all day. “Do you want to watch something on TV? Oops! Sorry! You can’t! It’s Moms’ Day Off!” I’m giggling right now just thinking about it.
You want to join me? Here are the rules:
1. Mom is Supreme Lord and Ruler of the remote from the time she wakes until bedtime (and possibly beyond, as it is perfectly acceptable to fall asleep on the couch).
2. The car does not leave the driveway.
3. Wine may be consumed starting at 11:30 a.m. (OK, 11).
4. No new food will be cooked. The menu is leftovers or anything that is scavengable and self-serve.v(You may nuke stuff for little kids … if you absolutely must. But try to avoid it.)
5. No getting dressed. (I adhere so strongly to this rule that one year, when I had a family event that was unmissable, I arrived in my pajamas and slippers.)
6. Naps. Naps all over the place. Nappity nap nap nap.
7. Anyone who is not mom is not allowed to bitch about anything. (This rule usually gets broken all day. But it’s worth a try.)
A note about dads: can they join in too? Normally I try to be inclusive, but I hesitate to give this a full-on green light. There are dads who are helpful, and there are dads who are not-so-much.
Let’s gauge it this way: if you’re a dad, have you done everything you were asked to do to help with holiday preparation? Yeah? You did? Or you think you did?
Well, sorry guys. That was a trick question. Because the key here is that you should be taking some initiative to help out instead of acting like you just landed on Planet Earth four weeks ago and are unfamiliar with concept of what needs to be done for the December holidays. Otherwise, if your ass hits the couch on Moms’ Day Off, I promise you that your lady will begin fantasizing about smothering you in your sleep. (And yes, if a kid yells “Mom!” on December 26, go ahead and just translate that to “Dad!”)
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays and that good stuff!