Thursday, December 20, 2012

A stress-free holiday

Ahhh. This is tough to do, yet we all seem to strive for it. I think removing stress from the holidays all comes down to one word: Procrastination. It doesn't work when it comes to the holidays. There are the few things I think you can wait until the last minute to do...aka Stocking stuffers, which you can pick up in any aisle lines even at the grocery store, but most work best when you plan ahead.

7 tips for a stress-free holiday
  1. Stay at home! But if you are traveling this holiday season and must ignore, replace with "fly with patience." We love waking up in our own home and encourage family to come to us for the snow and an idyllic white Christmas. We have traveled before, and it is so much more stressful getting everything organized, packed, wrapped and shipped.
  2. Make a list and check it 100 times. Write down everyone you need a gift for…and really include everyone. Then, write down what you are giving them. If you are at all like me, you will forget who gets the fuzzy slippers and who gets the picture frame.
  3. Buy a few extra gifts. Just in case someone slipped your mind or someone gives you a gift and you didn't plan on it, having backups is always helpful. Make it unisex cool and buy a separate one for a kid.
  4. Use your kids creativity. For the parents out there, take advantage of the precious artwork you were thinking of "filing away" and create a one of a kind gift for a grandparent who has everything. They'll cherish it.
  5. Buy decor late. If money is stressing you out, do what my mom did and make it a big deal to go out and buy your tree on Christmas Eve for a third of the price. Make it like you are "rescuing" this poor little forgotten tree. Think Charlie Brown's tree:) Then you don't have to worry about all those decorations weeks before hand. Same goes for wrapping paper, etc. They all go on sale the week of Christmas.
  6. Don't Do Everything your asked. While we're tempted to say yes to every party or outing, remember it's okay to stay in during the holidays. Don't loose sight of what is really important. Trust me, your friends will understand!
  7. Pull Double duty a fun way. Invite a few friends over to get your Christmas wrapping done together, or bake cookies for those exchanges. You'll get to spend QT with people you want to see, and you'll all get something accomplished. With the kids' asleep, you never know, a spontaneous party may ensue.
And to get a start on next year, think about applying tip #5 again right after the holidays. You can also get HUGE savings deals on decor after the holiday and get an early start on removing stress for next year. Just remember where you stash it so you can find it 12 months later :)

When all else fails, light the fire, turn on Christmas music, make some cookies and snuggle up. Life doesn't get any less stressful or relaxing.  Happy Holidays!!

1 comment:

  1. Great ideas! I especially like the staying home one - especially with kids.