It is the holidays. The shops are full of things we really don't need and usually don't want, but will buy anyway. The husband is the hardest of all people to buy for - rarely does he give a hint of what he would like to find in his Christmas stocking - waiting to tell me until it is usually too late to order whatever his heart's desire is from the internet and it will be impossible to find said present in the shops. But every year we try to find that most perfect something.
This year we are once again traveling far and narrow to the Land of the In-Laws. I used to look forward to visiting them. Then I paid an independent visit to the SIL without the husband. The visit was not successful. My SIL said some things which made me cry (all under the guise of "I was just kidding"). I am tired to the bone of keeping my mouth shut when the long list of "things I do for everyone and they don't appreciate me - if only they would listen to my advice as I am always right" is taken out and re-hashed over and over again. I am trying to develop a coping strategy. I think the strategy will involve many cups of tea with the MIL and long walks with the Boy, who will be returning with us. Avoidance always works.
The sudden death of a co-worker's sibling has yet again reminded me why I moved to this sunburnt land - life is short, hold the ones you love close and the rest of them can fuck off.