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RAISING LUMINARIES

Hi, I’m Ashia, founder & Head Custodian of Infodumpery for Raising Luminaries.

I create free tool kits to help overworked caregivers ignite the next generation of leaders.

ABOUT | MISSION | FINANCIALS | ACCOUNTABILITY

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Get free monthly email notifications when I publish new Family Action Toolkits

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Posts may contain affiliate links and  sponsorships, which allow me to earn a commission at no extra cost to you.

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Christmas

via Ashia
Published: Updated: 678 views

Raising Luminaries & Books for Littles are free and accessible for readers who can’t afford a paywall. Posts may contain affiliate links, which allow me to earn a commission at no extra cost to you. Check out the full affiliate disclosure along with my statement of accountability.


 

Let’s reveal & reject all the shitty parts of Christmas-season consumerism & sexism

Every year, I’m like:

“YEAH! This is the year we’re gonna DO CHRISTMAS TO THE MAX! I’m gonna create so much friggin’ warm and joyous memories, the Earthquakes will be hardcore resilient for the rest of their lives!”

“THIS IS THE YEAR we will start sustainable family traditions. THIS IS THE YEAR I’m gonna start sending Christmas cards and deepen friendships! THIS IS THE YEAR we’re gonna PUMP UP THE GENEROSITY and schmaltz it up to 11!”

And then I pull together some shitty DIY cookies or whatever, run out of steam, and do a big online order of plastic garbage because I’m too tired to Christmas any farther.

But what I’ve figured out after trying to do a decade of CHRISTMAS TO THE MAX!!!!**, is that the less I scramble to keep up with ‘mom’ responsibilities for the holiday, the more fun we all have.

So over in Bumblebee Hollow, this upcoming Christmas will focus on our basic staples: thoughtful giving, receiving with appreciation, and keeping our heads above the snow.

 

Tree of Cranesthe tomtes' christmas porridgethe king of too many things

Little sid the better tree fort the table where rich people sit

When is it?

  • 25th of December

Read:

Discuss: Invisible Labor & The Tomtes’ Christmas Porridge

The English translation of The Tomtes’ Christmas Porridge is a bit jarring, referencing the man of the house as ‘master’ – which has some nasty connotations in American English (re: slavery). Discuss with your kids!

Beyond that – this story creates an opportunity to talk about emotional and invisible labor. Specifically – how the mother tomte has to run herself ragged to protect her husband’s fragile ego.

The story also reinforces a gender binary and implies ridiculous magic powers that come as a part of pooping out a baby, suggesting  female tomtes have foresight magic that men lack. But with the right spin, we were able to discuss how this ‘like all mother tomtes’ situation reflects a cultural tendency to dump all of the invisible labor of orchestrating holidays on women – on mothers in particular – and how this ‘ability’ could be a skill developed by demand and survival in a sexist world, rather than biology.

  • What does the porridge symbolize? (Recognition, appreciation, respect, reciprocity)
  • Why is it important to Papa that we recognize his hard work?
  • Who else in the Tomte family works hard?
  • Who does NOT get recognition for their hard work?
  • Why is it that only mother tomtes have the job of knowing what is important and urgent?
  • Do women have a natural biological ability to pay more attention? Or are they nurtured and raised to pay attention?
  • How does it feel when your hard work goes unrecognized and unappreciated?
  • Why did Papa throw a fit & hold a grudge when he didn’t feel appreciated?
  • Who did Papa take out his hurt on?
  • How did Papa’s reaction force Mama to work harder to protect his feelings next time?
  • Whose responsibility is it to manage our behavior when we are upset?
  • Why do we assume men are too weak and fragile to work without recognition?
  • What ‘invisible’ work is each member of our family expected to do? What are the consequences to them if they don’t keep up?

Resources to create a better Christmas:

**No judgement if you still love to do CHRISTMAS TO THE MAX!!!!! It’s not my thing, but if it brings you joy, BRING ALL THE CHRISTMAS.

Unless your family has reached a state of enlightenment or you’ve managed to extricate yourself from a community saturated in capitalism and reciprocity, you’re probably going to have to participate in the whole gift-giving ordeal just to lubricate your social life for the next 12 months. So here we go, our old comprehensive list of gifts:  The Books For Littles Gift guide.

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Ashia (they/them or she/her)

I’m an Autistic, multiracial (Chinese/Irish) 2nd-generation settler raising two children alongside my partner on the homelands of the Wampanoag and Massachusett people. My goal with Raising Luminaries is to collaborate with families and educators in raising the next generation of kind & courageous leaders, so we can all smash the kyriarchy together.

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RAISING LUMINARIES

Hi, I’m Ashia, founder & Head Custodian of Infodumpery for Raising Luminaries.

I create free tool kits to help overworked caregivers ignite the next generation of leaders.

ABOUT | MISSION | FINANCIALS | ACCOUNTABILITY

SHOW YOUR SUPPORT

STAY IN TOUCH

Get free monthly email notifications when I publish new Family Action Toolkits

FREE STUFF

JOIN OUR COMMUNITY

SHOP

Posts may contain affiliate links and  sponsorships, which allow me to earn a commission at no extra cost to you.

AFFILIATE POLICY

PARTNERS IN CAHOOTS

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RECIPROCATE

Collaborate with Raising Luminaries on an issue important to you.

You’re welcome to share & boost this toolkit, with attribution to Raising Luminaries.

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