Thanksgiving is here and once again it is hard to believe that the year seemed to fly by. And now it is off to the holiday races and super mom mode kicks in high gear. Because, let’s be honest…all the magic that happens over the holidays… the amazing Thanksgiving meal, the holiday treats, the parties, decorations, presents, Christmas day… we can pretty much thank all the moms out there for making it happen. Meanwhile behind the scenes most of us are running ourselves ragged to get it all done and don’t get to spend much time actually enjoying all the magic that we whip up. Raise your hand if you spend the holidays sleeping less, eating more, driving all over with a million lists running in your head?!?! Well darn it…you deserve to enjoy the holiday season too so here are 8 ways for moms can to stay sane through the holidays.
- Purchase holiday supplies ahead of time. What would the holidays be without all the little things that make it magical? But these are often the things that we overlook and forget to add to one of our many lists. So take the next time you make a Target run or log in to Amazon, stock up on the wrapping paper, ribbons, scotch tape, 3M wall hooks and anything else you may need to decorate your halls and walls.
- Stock your pantry.With the holidays here, baked goods are in high demand. There is forever an office party, class party or holiday potluck on the calendar this time of year. And just about every mom I know will make at least one attempt at making holiday cookies with the kiddos before realizing baking with kids a disaster waiting to happen. If cooking isn’t your jam… Stash extra holiday cookies from the grocery or even a few fruit cakes or some premade cookie dough you can quickly pop in the oven.
- Stash away extra presents. There is always an extra white elephant party you didn’t plan for or a surprise guest that shows up at Christmas dinner. And you will make at least 3 trips a week to Target between now and Christmas and buy more than what you actually need. So just buy a few universal gifts or gift cards to stash away so that you always have something ready to go.
- Shop early. I know easier said than done and early is a relative concept because believe it or not there are some people that are already done with their shopping…so kudos to you if you are. But for the rest of us don’t wait till the last minute when you will find yourself driving across town to 4 different stores to find that one toy your kid asked for or the one thing you think your mother-in-law will love.
- Use a family calendar. As soon as Halloween hits the schedules go crazy. All the holiday parties, traveling plans, family visits, school activities, performances and get togethers. And is it just me or are there a ton of November birthdays? It is impossible to keep up with it all and make sure that everyone knows what is happening when. And is my husband the only one who doesn’t pay any attention to shared family calendar online? The only solution I can come up with is to put a big wall calendar right in the kitchen where everyone can see it.
- Say No. You don’t have to do it all. You don’t have to make it to every holiday event. You don’t have to volunteer for all the holiday school activities and performances your kids participate in. There are some things on your todo lists that you hate doing and suck the life out of you. Yes we do sometimes have to do the things we don’t want to do but you don’t have to spend the holidays run down because you plate is full of a crap load of things that stress you out.
- Practice selfcare. Momma…You cannot do it all without taking time for yourself. This is a time of year where it is so easy to burnout but ain’t nobody got time for that right now. So instead of running yourself into the ground trying to get it all done, set some time aside for yourself throughout this holiday run. Create a 15 to 30 minute selfcare routine that you can implement into your daily routine. Do yoga in the morning or evening, take daily walks, meditate, eat well, drink plenty of water, get sleep…you know the drill but this year actually plan to make time for it so you don’t spend your holiday recovering from the burnout.
- Create traditions that bring you joy. At the end of the day this is the season of joy. So find some traditions that you actually enjoy and don’t run around spending all your time doing the things you feel obligated to do. Take down time just for your family, buy yourself some presents to put under the tree or order some takeout for your holiday dinner. Do whatever brings you joy because Mommas we deserve to reap the rewards of some of this magic we manage to whip together.
Let us know what you do to stay sane through the holidays?
Elisha Beach is a stay-at-home mom to four kids and four step-kids…Yes, you read that right—eight kids. She is a wife, home cook, taxi driver, herder of children, terrible housekeeper and founder of The Mom Forum.
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