Ahhh the holidays. For children it’s the most wonderful time of the year, for adults it’s all about what you make of it. I believe in making an effort to be happy, joyous even, around the holidays. As my Christmas-loving mother once said, “It’s a spirit – not a day.”
Still, despite all of the joy and thanksgiving – it’s stressful to come back home for the holidays and see all of your relatives and old friends. The questions, the rules, the old resentments, the reminders, the arguments – it’s overwhelming sometimes.
I love my family. Our humor, our memories and our traditions have obviously made me the woman I am today. On the other hand, one of the most difficult things about the holidays is spending time with family members who you love but who you’ve also spent the past decade trying to avoid excessive face-to-face contact with. And for good reason.
Fortunately I’m here, with wine suggestions. Because how else are you going to get through this? Also, any of these pairings would make an excellent gift for
the offending party your family. Save for your drunk Uncle. Please don’t get your already drunk Uncle drunker.
Ed. Note: This list isn’t gender specific.
Your cousin who thinks she’s better than everyone. Annoying but unavoidable. Maybe she studied abroad and now speaks with a fake British accent or maybe her professional accomplishments have over-inflated her intellectual perception of herself. Hell, maybe your aunt and uncle gave her an unrealistic sense of importance during her formative years. Whatever it is this cousin is the fucking worst. Listening to her ramble on and on about how successful/classy/great she is, is about as fun as slathering yourself with butter and climbing into the oven to bake at 400°. Instead of ruining the holiday by confronting her with the reality that nobody’s as perfect as she pretends to be and, actually, that’s not how you pronounce ‘reputable,’ pour the both of you a glass of wine and take a deep breath. I’d pair this conversation with a $4 bottle of Trader Joe’s Pinot Noir. You can pass it off as an expensive French wine because if we’re being honest she definitely won’t know the difference.
Your drunk uncle. I mean, he probably doesn’t need anymore alcohol and he definitely prefers beer or scotch so you can totally drink a relaxing glass of wine and watch him be ridiculous from afar. Here are some things your drunk uncle will most certainly do: be politically incorrect, offend everyone, discuss his high school football career, explain in simple terms how global warming doesn’t exist, and offer everyone unsolicited hugs as the night goes on. Pair this sh*t show with a glass of Sangiovese, because like your uncle, it’s tannic and acidic, but actually quite harmless.
Your rich aunt. She’s usually childless and a super successful career woman…or a sugar baby. Either way she’s living the life! The best part about her is she’s so happy with her own life she really doesn’t have time to judge or care about yours. Pour a glass of (expensive) champagne and cheers to no kids, lots of money, and generous Christmas gifts. 😉
Your sh*t talking aunt. This conversation can go either way. If she’s talking sh*t about annoying family members, great. If she’s talking about you, not so great. Early in the conversation you can probably join in on the sh*t talking, “You’re right Aunt Karen, Jessica does take it upon herself to dress like a hooker at every family gathering.” But a fair warning: Your time is coming and you’re going to need something to keep you alert. Basically, this is not the time for red wine. A solid white wine like Chenin Blanc will keep you on your toes during your interactions and help you keep your clapback locked and loaded. Take a sip as soon as she hurls an insult your way and proceed. “Wow Aunt Karen, I might be single forever but at least I didn’t end up marrying the wrong man, like how you married Uncle Kevin and he left you for Ms. Chris.” Burn.
Your adult cousin who’s never had a job. This guy is interesting because he’s always throwing around phrases like, “I have to go to work tomorrow” or “My job won’t give me the day off.” *side eye* Anyways this cousin is usually super chill because, well, he doesn’t really have many worries! How he makes his money is always up for debate by various family members including your sh*t talking aunt. Regardless, the likelihood of him admitting he has no job is slim to none. So, pair his lies with a holiday punch comprised of a jug of pre-made sangria mixed with ginger-ale because like him it seems as if you put some serious effort in, but it’s really just sugar, carbonation and grapes.
Happy Holidays, Lushies!