Devise A Game Plan
Sit down with your spouse long before the holidays and share what's important to each of you about Christmas or Hanukkah celebrations. Open communication is essential to determine, as a team, the priorities for your new little family. Talk about the traditions that were part of your own childhood that you remember most fondly. Spending time with loved ones is always high up on everyone's list.
Communicate The Plan
Don't wait until the last minute to tell both sets of parents what your plans are for the holidays. Be calm and non-confrontational. No matter how much they pressure you, you and your spouse must present a united front. The grandparents will come to accept the fact that traditions change with each new generation, as two families are blended together.
Where will your little family spend the holidays? How can you make both sets of grandparents happy? Here are 3 basic strategies for resolving this holiday dilemma:
1. Share — Some new parents manage to visit with both sets of grandparents on the holiday, even going so far as to eat two big dinners. Others spend Christmas Eve with one side of the family and Christmas Day with the other. If the holiday you celebrate is Hanukkah, you'll have an easier time since it extends over 8 nights and gives you lots of opportunities for togetherness. With this strategy, no grandparent misses out entirely on time with baby. But it only works if everybody lives close together or reasonable travel times apart.
2. Alternate — One year you spend the holiday with your parents and the next year with his. This option lets you be fully present throughout the family celebration, not checking your watch to see if it's time to leave or skipping dessert to get on the road. This is also the best option if one or both families live far away. Be sure to call, or better yet use a service to video call, the ones who are missing out each year.
3. Host — Invite all the grandparents to come to you. Everyone gets to share Baby's First Christmas. Not having to travel with an infant also makes it easier for you, especially if you can cater the holiday meal or ask the grandmothers to help with the cooking.