Holiday Craziness and how to avoid it
The holiday season can be stressful and crazy but also wonderful. Holidays are meant to be a time with family, fun, and joy. Though through the shopping, buying, wrapping seeing this person and that, preparing feasts, and entertaining it can sometimes get away from you. We need to remember the special moments and not get caught up with doing everything perfectly. Sometimes just doing it is better than doing it perfectly. This is coming from a perfectionist too. We all need some simple steps to combat the holiday craziness and ways to help enjoy it.
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Here you can enjoy the Holiday season again. Enjoy each moment and don’t think it’s a chore. Do what puts a smile on your face. If you don’t want to fully decorate or wrap that present, it’s ok. Everything can still be great for you and your kids. I’ve started to use bags a lot, I don’t always want to wrap. The bags still look cute as a gift and it goes much faster for me.
These simple steps to get through the holiday craziness will have you ready to enjoy the holiday season once again. Easy ways to have more joy and less stress during your celebrations.
With young children, you can make a new ornament each year. Make it about something that happened or they enjoyed this year to remember each year. Such as a soccer player if they started soccer this year or a book if they learned to read.
I also buy an ornament anytime we go away. That will then be a special item we got on vacation and will be displayed each year on the tree. I love getting new ornaments from the places we go together as a family.
Have family craft nights. You can make name tags for dinner, Christmas cards or paper garland. You can bake together or make Gingerbread Houses.
Every year for 11 years now we make Gingerbread House together with the cousins. I started this tradition when my nephew was 2 and before I had my own kids. We make a point to do this every year. We now have gotten smarter and buy the already assembled ones because it took forever for them to get to decorate them. The kids just want to decorate.
Reading Holiday Stories
I’ve heard some people wrap a book for each day and have the kids open and read it together. They don’t all have to be a new book, use the books you had from last year as well.
I don’t wrap mine but do take out books only for the Holiday Time. My kids look forward to these books that they haven’t read in a year. My son now is reading those books that he couldn’t last year. He loves that he can read them on his own now. We also have my older son read to his brother.
Kids will be getting new toys, it’s a perfect opportunity to get rid of old and unused toys. Have your kids help you decide what they would like to give away. You can donate the toys to a charity, goodwill or sometimes high school do a collection.
I often work with many children that have very little. My son likes to give to the kid’s I work with. Even if I don’t give them all to those kids, he is the one making the choice for the toys he no longer wants or needs.
When the kids make the decisions they are part of the giving process and learn not to be greedy. By having your children make the choice then they are not upset when they no longer see that toy anymore.
Make gift-giving a little easier
If you have a large family or many gifts to get you can do a Kris Kringle present exchange.
We do this with all the cousins on one side of the family. It’s too much to get every kid a gift. We want them each to have a gift to open together, but they don’t need tons of gifts. So each year we do a Kris Kringle and each child buys for another child. Everyone gets a gift and it’s not crazy expensive. It’s a win-win.
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During this time of year, there are always tons of things to do outside. Check your town for a tree or Menorah lighting. We go to a tree lighting every year. It has carols, hot chocolate, and fireworks. It’s always a fun night.
- Tree Lighting
- Drive around looking at lights
- Ice Skating
Go out and enjoy the Holiday festivities outside.
Try and plan one special night with your family. It can be going to a local play or holiday concert.
Take a break
During all the craziness, designate a time where everyone in your home will drop everything and read. You can each read alone or read together.
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During the holiday season, we sometimes get caught up in all the hustle and bustle and forget to take care of ourselves. Here are some simple ways to help yourself during this busy time.
One day a week
Pick one day a week where you don’t have any out of house holiday activities going on.
Head into the holiday season with a positive attitude. (This one isn’t always easy for me.) Stay connected to family and friends that make you feel good to help you get through.
Trim your list down to things that you enjoy and are happy to do.
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Whenever you feel anxious or jittery squeeze a stress ball. This will help you calm and release some stress.
It is said in the practice of Feng Shui that floating candles bring on a sense of calm and pump up brainpower.
I don’t have many floating candles, but I’m going to get some.
Have a cup of tea, coffee or hot chocolate and sit and watch a Christmas movie. I am a Christmas movie addict. I love them all. When my husband is working nights I watch Hallmark movies.
The Muppet Christmas Carol is a family tradition of ours that we start right after Thanksgiving. It’s a family favorite.
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Just as I love Christmas movies I also love Christmas music. I switch between 3 different stations that play all Christmas music. If you don’t like Christmas music, put on any music to help you feel better. Listening to music is a proven stress reliever.
Take deep-breathing breaks to cope when you feel anxiety.
Remember through everything that goes on, it’s ok to not be ok all the time. Say those words when your struggling and have a rough day.
I love the ideas you provided here. Especially exchanging gifts for all the kids. The group of cousins has gotten so large. #1 my kids don’t need that many gifts and #2 I can’t afford to buy that many gifts. So we are all opting to do a cousin day “experience” instead. Pay for your own kids, and we’ll go somewhere fun. And you’re so right, we have to remember to take care of ourselves during the holidays. Wonderful post! Visiting from Girl Bosses Rock.
Thank you so much, Julie. Yes, exactly. Things can get crazy around the holidays. It doesn’t need to be that way and if it’s not everyone can enjoy the season more. Having an experience day with cousins is a terrific idea. I love it. You are building memories instead of giving a toy. I also wrote an article about giving kids a gift of an experience instead of a toy. You might find those ideas helpful for your cousin day.