Focus on Fun for the Holidays!
Fall and winter bring a plethora of activities, chances to spend time with our family and friends, and lots of “stuff” that only happens once a year. As moms, our first instinct is to try to do it all so that our kids don’t miss out on anything. After all, our kids are only this age once, right? So, we MUST do it all, right? NO!! That’s a recipe for disaster.
So, how do we make the most of the holiday season without losing our minds?
- Don’t overbook yourselves. The younger your children are, the more important this is. Consider nap times if your kids are still napping, when your kids are usually at their best, and transit time when making commitments. Less truly is more. If you don’t want to miss out on seeing people, try hosting a potluck in January, when things have slowed down. A potluck means you don’t have to do all the cooking, so you’ll have plenty of time to socialize with your guests.
- Focus on what really matters. This, of course, is a family decision, but generally speaking, we remember people, not things. Do your best not to get wrapped up in the details, decorations, and other things that won’t matter in 10 years.
- Stick to your child(ren)’s schedule and routines as much as possible. Find out more about keeping your toddler’s routine during the holidays here.
- Make a list. Involve your husband (ask him what his favorite childhood memories are if you need something to spark conversation). If your children are old enough, ask them what they want to do. Check out my free printable for ideas. Making a list helps make sure you do everything you want to do this holiday season. Consider it your Holiday Bucket List and something you can pull out each year to use as a starting point.
What else can we do to make sure we make the most of this holiday season?
Take care of yourself.
We’re stressed. We’re short for time. But, we need to make sure that we take care of ourselves too. If we don’t, it’ll be nearly impossible to get through this holiday season without snapping at others and losing our marbles. So, why not involve your family in some of your self-care?
- Get moving!
- Bundle up and go for a walk. Notice the changes that Fall brought. Check out the Christmas lights and other holiday decorations.
- Rake the leaves. Shovel the snow. Make it a race (which team can….?). Have fun with it!
- Do yoga together! It’s a great way to re-energize midday or wind down before bedtime. Try the FREE Parent and Me Yoga Challenge to slow down and connect this holiday season!
- Have a holiday dance party…Put on holiday tunes and dance. No one’s watching, so bust out with your favorite moves. 🙂
- Slow down and relax a bit.
- Read holiday stories together.
- Do art or craft projects.
- Watch a holiday movie together.
- Just spent at the end of the day?
- Do yoga while channel surfing or catching up on your favorite show.
- Rub lotion on your hands and feet before bed. Or, give yourself a mini-foot massage while watching TV.
- Take a nice long shower or bubble bath. Why not?
Remind yourself that you can’t do it all.
It’s just not possible. You’re only one person, and it’s okay not to be perfect.
- Ask for help, including from your children. Capitalize on their natural curiosity and willingness to be involved. You could also remind them what they get to do when they’re done (for example, “After we clean the kitchen, we get to make and decorate cookies!”).
- Divide and conquer. Ask your husband or older children to choose something off of your “to do” list. Then, do what’s left. For added fun (and incentive), make it a race. Whoever finishes first gets to… (choose dinner, select the movie, a night off of ___). This “race” idea works well with toddlers too! Just don’t expect as much help from them, given their ages. 🙂
- Throw perfection aside. Done is better than perfect. Focus on what truly needs to be done and what you want done. Then, do the things that need to be done first, and get to the wants if you have time.
- Enlist the help of family and friends. Do you have a friend that loves playing with your kids? Invite her over (lunch is on you!) to play with your kid while you clean the house, wrap presents, or whatever it is that you need to do. Another idea is to swap services with a friend. Go to her house (with your kids) and watch both of your kids while she does what she needs to do. Next time, it’s your turn and she comes to your house. It’s like a play-date and free baby-sitting all in one!
Remember that it will be ok.
If you’re anything like me, there’s always more that you want to do or feel like you should do. But, that’s always the case, isn’t it? That’s not limited to the holidays. So, go easy on yourself. Do “just enough” to get by. Focus on what really matters to you and your family this holiday season. For me, it’s making sure we go look at all the Christmas lights, decorating the house together, watching the classic Ruldoph, and taking a family picture on Christmas morning (with the tripod, not selfie style). I’m not one who cares about elaborate meals, so we keep the food simple and that works for us. Holiday themed, yes, but still simple.
Have fun this fall and holiday season!
Do your best to relax, be present in the moment, and enjoy it. Let the little things go as much as you can. Grab my FREE Focused Family Fun for the Holidays Guide and get started making this the best (and easiest) Holiday Season yet!
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