When I was little, Christmas Day unfolded in a very specific way. (Don’t worry, this isn’t really a Christmas post, hear me out!).

Morning: get up, run down stairs to see what Santa brought. Get overexcited. Chocolate for breakfast. More excitement. Sugar crash. Argument.

Afternoon: Dinner at our house, granny’s house or an aunt or uncle’s house. Eat too much. Everybody sleeps for 30 minutes.

Evening: gifts exchanged between family members. Stay late. Everybody goes home.

That’s just how it is and any deviation from this format is unacceptable.

Chocolate for breakfast was tradition. Eating at a restaurant would be unthinkable. Exchanging gifts only (ONLY!) took place after dinner.

These were, and remain, our family customs. It’s how we always do it. This is our thing. Suggest changing it and my clan will turn on you.

To me, this was ‘family participation’. Everybody had to be involved, everybody had to be present, and it felt wrong if anyone was missing.

As you probably know, ‘special needs family participation’ is what Firefly is all about. We don’t like it when anyone misses out on important family moments, especially when they’re right there with us but can’t take part because of their condition.

Inclusion and participation matter to everyone. It’s a family thing, and it doesn’t matter whether you’re a ‘typical’ family or one of your crew has a disability. You’re a family first, and that’s what matters most. And that’s why we’re going to keep doing what we do.

Tell us about your family customs (Christmas-related or otherwise)

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