Simplify the Holidays and Enjoy all of the Moments

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There is not much that is more magical than the holiday season, no matter what you celebrate. The pressure to make the holidays perfect can feel overwhelming. I am 100% guilty of feeling like I need to do all the things. When my boys were younger I spent an enormous amount of time preparing, planning, and executing the “perfect” holiday. I was also exhausted and found the craziness detracted from my joy that time of year. So, I changed my strategy and simplified the season. Here are a few tips to help simplify the holidays and make this time of year less stressful and more joyful.

Food and the Holidays

Food is an important part of our celebrations. I love to cook and bake and Christmas was always the perfect time to include recipes from my grandparents and parents into my kid’s lives. For awhile, I found myself spending all my time in the kitchen and less time enjoying the meals we created. My suggestion? Pare down to what you really want your family to remember. For us, it’s my mom’s bundt cake for Christmas morning, my grandma’s lemon bars, and my mother-in-law’s Christmas cookies. Last year, we added a new family favorite that we take the day to make together—Beef Wellington.

Making a List, Checking it Twice

Shopping is perhaps the most time-intensive part of the holiday season. While online shopping can make things easier—and in our new COVID world, essential—it’s also easy to over buy and over spend. Making a list, along with a budget, and sticking to it will help ease the stress and worry that holiday shopping can bring. Need to simplify wrapping? Recycled bags and tissue paper take a fraction of the time that traditional wrapping does!

I’ll Be Home for Christmas

While COVID may change the landscape of what our holidays will look like, travel and visiting family are an important part of what the season is about. It’s also perhaps the most stressful. Talk with your family about what is realistic for you to do and what is too much. Having open communication and talking honestly about what you and your kids are capable of are the best ways to help avoid hurt feelings and holiday overload.

Take Care of Yourself

No matter what our holidays look like this year, taking care of yourself, exercising, sleeping and eating well adds up to a more joyful and peaceful holiday season. Take the time you need to care for yourself so that you have the best chance to enjoy the season.

Happy Holidays

While there is no blueprint to the perfect holiday season, taking time to reflect on what’s important for your family and your traditions can help pare down your obligations. Quality over quantity for this time of year is the best way to enjoy yourself and your family. Happy Holidays!

While you aim to simplify the holidays, read up on Ways to Take Care of Yourself During the Holidays.

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