The holidays are a time of love and joy. Or at least that’s the theory. In real life, the holidays are notoriously stressful, expensive, and a source of great anxiety. The antidote for all of this is to keep things simple, and filled with the spirit of the season. To switch from crazy to awesome, follow these simple tips and create fabulous memories for both you and the kidlets.
1. Decorate simply – While those elaborate displays are incredible to see, the reality is they take a lot of money and a long time to put together. A few items to set the mood, created and/or put up with the help of the kids meet the need and leave plenty of time for fun.
2. Play it up – As you count down the nights to gift giving make an extra effort to spend time together. Board games, and extra storybook reading, along with hot chocolates and marshmallows help create the sense of coziness, peace, and love that this time of year is all about.
3. Stay on budget – Giving creates such joy. It is so wonderful to see the thrilled looks on our little ones’ faces. We feel so good when we can make our kids happy. We also feel very good when we tell our friends what we’ve purchased. Problem is, if we’ve overextended our finances, the worry that will soon follow far exceeds the joy we’ve created. Make sure your gift list fits into your budget, and stick to it.
4. Keep meals on track – Cookies, cakes, and every yummy desserts imaginable are everywhere. On top of that, you are on the run. You have school events, shopping, holiday parties, and family events. It is soooo hard to make sure your family is living on something besides sugar and fat. Make an extra effort to stuff your kids with 5 servings of fruits and vegetables each day. Some days will be misses…but those that are hits will go a long way toward keeping bodies in balance despite the season’s sugary onslaught.
5. Hit the hay – With so much going on it is easy to come up short on the snoozes. Lack of sleep leads to the grumpies, as well as compromised immune systems. The last thing anybody wants, especially over the holidays, is a houseful of sickies! Do your best to keep bedtimes on time.
6. Turn off the TV – While you’ll want to catch your family’s favorite holiday specials, relaxation and family time will come more easily without the TV’s constant blaring. Relationships grow when we focus on each other. Have a few family nights without the TV competing for everyone’s attention and spend your time creating deeper connections.
7. Keep it going – We put so much effort in the prep time that those days after the celebrations can feel like such a letdown. There’s no reason to stop the feelings of love, joy, and family that you’ve worked so hard to create. To the best of your ability, keep life’s pace slow, and keep a family focus every day.