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Just Say No!

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Recession Mama Michele Ashamalla: I'm just a girl who can't say no. Until now ....

woman saying no
I co-chaired a fall festival at the kids' school, so I was pretty busy until Thanksgiving. After Thanksgiving, I found that it was time to decorate, buy presents, send out cards and do all the other holiday-type stuff in a scant few weeks. When my father went into the hospital a few days ago, I really started to reevaluate.

Here is what I came up with:

1) Though I have enjoyed a variety of holiday social functions in the past and I appreciate the invitations, this year I am unable to attend an event that requires me to bake cookies, exchange ornaments or do a white-elephant gift exchange.

2) My cards will probably make it out before Christmas, but most of the personal notes are out the window. If I see you all the time, you know what we are up to and really, everyone just wants to see how big the kids are and how haggard the parents look.

3) If my kids want to bake a lot of extra treats, they may do so, but it's a little more than I can handle right now. Since they are putting in extra practices for chorus and orchestra before their holiday concerts and soccer is still in playoffs, I don't think that will happen -- and that's fine with me.

I will not compare myself with other women who have fewer children and more household help. My kids are happy, and no one really cares if the wreath is on the door or not. We have a lovely two-week break this year and no plans to go anywhere or do anything. If I can just hang on, I'm golden!

next: Santa, You Scare Me!
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