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We skipped Christmas this year. Dad had a very difficult and fraught recovery, and he just didn’t feel like having Christmas. WE didn’t feel like it WAS Christmas.

Christmas is welcome to come without ribbons. Or come without tags. It can come without packages, boxes or bags. But I need Daddy carving the roast beast to have it feel like the real thing.

SO we shelved the presents, put the ham order on hold, and agreed to meet up on MLK weekend and do it up CORRECTLY.

And oh, but we have.

The move seemed really appropriate. MLK himself was a minister, after all, so Christmas would have been a High Holy Day for him, too.

We gathered, prayed together, yacked, drank too much wine. We watched seasonally appropriate uplifting movies like WINTER’S BONE and CABIN IN THE WOODS. We ate too much and opened presents —Julie got us this AWESOME birdhouse to encourage all my adored little birds to make MORE birds.

Best of all, it was all of us together, the little clot of ten people I love best in all the world, plus an eleventh, my nephew’s SRS girlfriend, who is beginning to be dear to all of us.

We are all a big pack of weirdos, and this weekend, we were all just weird and comfortable being so, tucked in among our own. MERRY MLK-HRISTMAS, everyone.

Oh, here is one thing we did: We rewrote Christmas Carols to be MLK-weekend appropriate. Here is part of one – I wish I could remember them all:

(Sing to the tune of HAVE A HOLLY JOLLY CHRISTMAS)

Have a Martin Luther K-hristmas,
It’s a holiday delight
We’ll have fun, and hot crossed buns
And lots of civil rights

It’s a Martin Luther K-histmas
And I think it’s just the best
Eating ham, and pie and jam
At a non-violent protest.

OH! HARK! It’s Rosa Parks,
What gift does she want?
She’s heading for the bus,
Take her right down front!

It’s a Martin Luther K-hristmas
What’s the shattering sound you hear?
A glass ceiling break?
So we can ALL partake
In K-hristmas, this year!

14 comments to MLK-hristmas

  • I <3 your family. That is all.

    Ok – maybe that needs some explaining. (or not).

    What I <3 is you waited to celebrate – so everyone could really ENJOY the holiday. A+

    Everyone celebrates their weirdness – and it appears that no one ends up in tears and wishes they were part of a different family. Maybe on Mars.

    Adding MLK love to Christmas. BRILLIANT!

    Happy 2013 Joss!

  • Elizabeth

    Amazing! Your family sounds zany– like mine. We got free stuff from the cell phone representative by singing to her– I’m not sure if she gave us everything we wanted so she could get away from the noise, or if she was genuinely delighted and was rewarding us… At any rate, So, so happy that you had a wonderful ML Khristmas.

  • Bernice

    This has nothing to do with Christmas or any other holiday, however I read A Grown-Up Kind of Pretty very recently and wanted to tell you that when I sadly finished reading the book I closed the cover and just said “Wow!”. That is also how I felt about your 1st book when I discovered you (not you, but your books) and I just want to say keep going, keep sane, and be happy. We are liking you out here in the wilds of Manitoba, Canada.

  • Catherine

    What a great idea!! Glad everyone is happy and hope your dad is doing well!

  • Fran

    I love you and your family. That is all.

  • Aparatchick

    Love your MLK-hristmas carol!

  • Lulu

    Well, Merry MLK-hristmas to you and yours too! And, love the birdhouse, too, but cut off that little perch to keep starlings from using it. Your bravest wrens, finches, etc. don’t need the perch and should use it happily.


  • DebR

    Best. Carol. Ever. 🙂

    My family did Christmas in January too, but we didn’t have civil rights themed carols, which would have been awesome. We played Apples to Apples, which was fun and awesome-ish given that we all have warped senses of humor that show up plainly in that sort of game. (Like the heated discussion on whether the word “cranky” is better expressed by Darth Vader or The Supreme Court)

    Sooooooo glad your dad’s health is on the upswing because he sounds like a fabulous human being and this world needs all the fabulous human beings it can get.

  • Brigitte

    Like your movie selection!

    And if you make MLK-hristmas the new tradition, you can really mop up on those post-Christmas sales. 😉

  • Oh, man! That sounds AWESOME!

  • We did that one year–but it was because a stomach super bug attacked all of my Louisiana relatives and we didn’t want to travel there from Texas just to get the pukes. I agree that a holiday is a holiday when everyone is together and is having fun–even a month “late.” 🙂 Glad your dad is better–the K-arol was awesome.

  • Melody

    I’m glad your dad is better! that is the best new carol every!

  • Michelle-Who-Is-Shelley

    Just saw an ad for CABIN IN THE WOODS. Just a coincidence that you watched those two movies or are you also a J-Law fan and searching out past movies of hers?

  • *awesome* This might catch on ~