Friday, November 19, 2010

10 Holiday Survival Tips

As we see more and more style gurus of holiday decorating, cooking, and shopping, expectations of holiday activities get higher and higher.  People like Martha Stewart, Paula Deen, Nate Berkus, and Kathy Ireland set the bar where most of us can't reach.  Then when we fall short, we feel badly, like we aren't doing everything we can for our families.  If we don't have the latest-greatest gifts under the perfect tree, and the most delicious and beautiful Christmas Eve buffet, we stress out.  Here are some tips to survive the upcoming holidays without ruining your health - physical or mental!  (and all the images in this post are designs from Tiny Prints!)

1.  Set reasonable goals for yourself.  Go for simple!  What do you remember about holidays when you were growing up?  Is it the gifts?  Is it the appetizers?  No!  It's the little simple "people" things, you remember.  Sometimes, it's even the mistakes that create fun memories.  Remember when Aunt Lucy knitted you that hideous Christmas sweater?  It wasn't a name-brand designer, hot trendy outfit.  But she made it for you and even though you didn't wear it (puh-leeze!), you remember it!

2.  Start shopping early.  There's no rules - the date police will not show up at your house if you start decorating and shopping before Thanksgiving.  The more time you have, the less stressful shopping will be.

3.  Combine tasks with fun - have a gift wrapping party!  Instead of making it a lonely "job" to wrap gifts this year, call a couple girlfriends and make it fun!  Or involve your children and make wrapping the gifts (not for them, of course) a craft project.  The recipients will love knowing that the children wrapped their gifts.

4.  Don't wait until Christmas Eve to start de-boxing and assembling toys.  It's incredible the number of twist ties and tape that secure toys these days.  And there's nothing that puts a damper on a child's unwrapping excitement more, than not being able to get the toy out of the packaging.  It's going to take time to de-box and assemble any toys so, start early and do a little bit at a time.  It will keep you from blowing your cool and destroying a gift.

5.  Enjoy the journey.  I have to remind myself constantly, that it's not all about achieving the goal.  The journey is a goal in and of itself.  Your children won't always care if you have the most beautiful chocolate mousse.  What they do care about and will remember is how you made them feel - make them feel special.

6.  Get plenty of rest.  It's tempting to use the wee hours of the night to accomplish some of those hundreds of things on your to-do list.  But the next day will be much more productive - all day - if you go to sleep on time and get your rest.  Getting enough rest is also one of the things that will help ward off winter colds and flu.

7.  Remember to laugh.  Martha Stewart is not joining you this Christmas.   The Oprah show crew is not showing up to memorialize your Christmas decorating style.  Take time to watch your kids - watching Maya is guaranteed to make me laugh!  Be silly - put on a Santa beard. 

8.   Remember the reason for the season.  Find time for prayer and meditation.  Christmas is so much more than decorations, gifts, and parties.  Take a break to remember the first Christmas and what it meant.  God sent us His Only Son.

9.  Use professionals to help you.  You don't have to make everything for scratch, cut down your own tree, grow your own corn.  One amazing time saving service these days will address and mail your holiday cards!  Check out a company like Tiny Prints.  Make your holidays easier with Tiny Prints Christmas Cards.  The quality of their product is exemplary and their imagination in finding ways to make your life easier has no bounds.  Not only is their service impeccable, they have great designs.  People will think you spent hours, not minutes in creating your holiday cards.  One place where I always save time is pre-made mashed potatoes.  Not the powdered kind but the actual potatoes.

10. Start a Christmas Club or Savings Account for next year.  Our local bank still has Christmas Club Accounts.  I love, love, love them!  Divide your Christmas budget by 10 and start in January, putting one tenth into that account.  Or, better yet, set it up to come automatically out of your paycheck.  Next October, you'll have all the money you need.  Isn't that a dream come true to help you survive the holidays?

Remember, it's not what you do with your kids that matter, it's how you make them feel.   Make them feel special.  That will create a warm and wonderful memory!  Have fun and enjoy the season.  You won't only survive, you will thrive and face the New Year with happiness and hope.  God Bless!

About Tiny Prints:
Tiny Prints provides stylish, modern and unique stationery from photo cards to personalized greeting cards to thank you cards and business cards. Offering exclusive designs from the nation’s top designers, easy card personalization, a powerful preview engine and top-notch customer service and paper quality, their designs have been lauded by numerous television networks, publications and celebrities. With Tiny Prints by your side the Holidays will be a cinch! They offer adorable Thanksgiving Cards, Christmas Cards, Hanukkah Cards, and even New Years Cards. All fully customizable and personalizable.

Tiny Prints helps you get together, keep in touch and share your love—one little card at a time. Tiny Prints was started in 2003 by three friends and a dream. With a shared a love of babies and an affinity for beautiful paper, they set out to create a stationery company that would offer the experience of a local boutique with the ease of an online retailer. Specializing in the celebration of all of life's special occasions, we're thrilled to offer a fresh selection of exclusive designs, from birth announcements and baby shower invitations to personal stationery and more, delivered with the best customer service you can find online or in stores.

Stop by the Tiny Prints Blog, become a fan of Tiny Prints on Facebook and follow Tiny Prints on Twitter @TinyPrints to discover news, trends and creative inspiration for social stationery, family celebrations and so much more!

More info:
Join Tiny Prints on Facebook:
Follow Tiny Prints on Twitter:

Disclosure:  I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Tiny Prints blogging program, making me eligible to get a $75 Tiny Prints gift certificate! For more information on how you can participate, click here


Post a Comment

I *heart* comments!