I love the Christmas season. I love all the memories I’ve made during this special time of year, and it motivates me to do the same for my children. Since I’m a stay-at-home, homeschooling momma, I view the holiday season as a chance to reconnect and savor time with my little clan.
However, I also see the Christmas season as a busier-than-normal, stressful, go-go-go time as well. It’s easy for me to get caught up in the mentality that I need to make the most of every single second during this time. But the truth is, that kind of mindset isn’t helpful or special for me or for my kids.
So this year I’m trying hard to focus my time more efficiently. I want to make those sweet memories with my kiddos, but I also want to use my time to be both productive and relaxed . . . oxymoron, I know. We’re in the middle of renovating our home, so I definitely want to take advantage of the time off that my husband has to make headway on our fixer-upper. But that also means I’ll have someone home during the day, so maybe I can sneak away for a few hours here and there and get some time to myself—thus the relaxation dreams.
However it falls, here’s my plan of attack to make the most of my time during the busy holiday season.
Make a list and check it twice.
The past few years I’ve created a Christmas bucket list for my crew. This is a fantastic way to prioritize all the holidays choices, and keep us focused on a few mindful things we want to do as a family. Just remember to keep the bucket list small and achievable. Don’t stress out about cramming in a bunch of bullet points.
When I find myself getting super stressed and notice my shoulders are in my ears, I stop and take some deep breaths. My family thinks I’m winding up for a giant meltdown, but I’m really just blowing out the tension I feel weighing on my head. There’s just something healing about taking a bunch of deep breaths; it’s like yoga for my brain.
Find your jam.
By this, I mean pick one or two things that make you feel alive and good to go . . . and do them. For me, I feel my best when I’m working out every day and reading my Bible. When I give up one or both of those things? My head begins to spin, and things seem chaotic and too much to handle. So pick those things that work for you, and try your darndest to do them every. single. day.
Turn on the tunes.
Everything is better when you have a soundtrack—even a puking kid. I don’t know what magic is holds, but music is such a miracle worker. I love having music play in the background (or the foreground when I need to drown out fighting kiddos). Make a playlist of your favorites, and turn up the volume. And if you’re anything like me, Christmas music makes things extra wonderful.
Have a whatever moment.
There will be those moments when all hell breaks loose, and you can’t seem to regain control of the day. So when those days hit, take a time out and do a whatever moment. Pack the kids into the car and hit up the local ice cream shop. Or bundle everyone up and march to the nearby park. If dinner seems too much to conquer right now, take advantage of restaurants that offer nights when kids can eat free. And who knows? That whatever moment may turn into one of your favorite memories this holiday season!