Need some help keeping your sanity?
With the Holidays upon us, life is about to get very hectic for us Parents. As a Mother to one, and Aunt to six, I’ve learned a thing or two about survival during this trying time.
Here’s a few things to keep in mind that can help you get through the Holiday season.
Itineraries Are Awesome
And in my opinion, highly necessary. You are going to have enough going on with planning family trips, scheduling shopping excursions, keeping children entertained with crafts, and checking on Aunt Molly in the nursing home. It’s super easy to forget things.
Keep a Holiday Calendar and record EVERYTHING you plan on doing for the next few months, even if it’s just taking an hour to cut little pieces of construction paper into turkeys. It will help you keep things in perspective, not overwhelm and double-book yourself, and keep your schedule on track. You might think this is silly, but when you discover that you’re late to Grandma’s for pre-Christmas Day gift exchange, your hands are covered in glue, and you still haven’t bought your brother a gift, you’ll wish you had kept a scheduled list.
And with schedules in mind, that brings us to…
Don’t Spread Yourself Too Thin
Yes, you have a huge calendar to keep everything perfectly recorded in detail; Visit the Grandparent’s at 2pm, followed by an hour of Christmas shopping before your Daughter’s recital at 5, then just before bedtime for the littles, you’ll decorate the tree. Once the kids go down, there’s about 30 mins before the youngest wakes up for a drink of water, in which during that time you can work on the office Secret Santa list. And at some point before you pass out from exhaustion, you’ll actually clean the garage for the New Year’s Eve Party ….remember; you can’t commit to everything.
The holidays are meant for family, and if you simply have full day after full day planned out, then skip a few office parties and social gatherings with that couple down the street (who have three dogs and no children). There’s no shame in it, and it will give you more down time at home to rest, and catch up on necessities-like cooking and cleaning. One big tip I took full advantage of with a 5 month old…
The Internet Is Your Friend
You can totally do all your holiday shopping online – and really should! Avoid the malls and shopping centers altogether, and (usually) get a better deal, money-wise.
Cyber Monday follows Thanksgiving, so instead of fighting over stuff on Black Friday, stay at home and shop in your jammies. And Amazon Prime…hello?! Enjoy the free shipping and never leave the house. Basically, everything’s in boxes anyway, so you can just shove all that crap somewhere in the house and wait to wrap it. Then you don’t have children hunting down their presents for a sneak peek. And with gifts in mind, let’s remember…
Keep The Big Gifts To Yourself
Or rather, make them “from” yourself-don’t give the Fat Man all the credit. Santa doesn’t have to bring all the gifts come Christmas time. Let him have given out the clothes and small toys. Let the big gifts, like expensive toys and electronics, have come from you (the parent) and other family members. Why? It’s hard explaining to children why Santa discriminates when it comes to presents. And it isn’t fair when the Jolly Fat Guy decides one child can have the newest “Hot Toy” of the year, and another can’t (because their parent’s simply can’t afford it ).
I’m not saying that if you can get your children the biggest, most expensive things, not to do it-I’m just saying to put your own name on the tag, not Santa. Because kids naturally talk, and then they can at least give that well deserved credit where it’s really due – and hopefully, save some hurt feelings that inevitably, will happen.
Hopefully some of these little reminders can help you get through the season. What’s some things that help you out during the Holiday Season?