I remember when my girls were younger and I was still in ‘survival mode’ and the holiday season came upon me….I thought I wouldn’t be able to get through another day. This blog is dedicated to helping you appreciate this Christmas holiday season with your young family.
I was making all of my girls’ food at that time, dressing them, ensuring they were happy all day long, bathing them and putting them to bed each night. Then there were all the Christmas preparations… I remember having to decorate the inside and outside of our home with Christmas cheer. I remember Christmas shopping for 27 people and for some of those people, I needed to buy multiple gifts. I remember hitting more than one Christmas party in a night and always having to ensure that my girls were well taken care of back at home. Then we would entertain family and friends in our home, as well. This was, of course, all in conjunction with my job, which luckily was only part-time. And the year that my youngest had the chicken pox and had her worst day of suffering on Christmas Day holds a special place in my memories.
Is it any wonder that I began to dread the Christmas season??? I have learned from experience that even though we feel alone when we go through challenges, we are never alone. But I remember trying to find others at the time that felt the same way I did but came up empty-handed, which made my challenges seem even worse. No one wants to be a Grinch and eagerly wait for the holiday season to end! But some of us end up feeling that way. This article is written for those of you that are in “survival mode” at this time of year; I do not want you to feel alone as I did, nor do I want you to miss the magic of Christmas.
Here is a list of things that I did to appreciate the moment:
1. I did not clean up immediately after each family gathering or party but instead went right to bed, filled with the laughter and special moments of the evening, waking refreshed and more ready to tackle the huge amount of work before me.
2. When I decorated, wrapped presents or cleaned up, I did it while listening to music or while watching a movie that the girls were enjoying or while talking on the phone to a friend or family member that I adored.
3. In between busy times shopping, working or socializing, I lay on the couch, putting my feet up for 5-10 minutes at a time, breathing deeply. You think you can’t take the time but when you do, you are able to organize your thoughts and re-energize, so that you can actually accomplish more in a day!
4. When Christmas Day arrived, I ensured that only one present was opened at a time, watching each present be opened, and folded the used tissue paper to ensure I slowed things down and kept things orderly around me. Taking pictures or videotaping the girls opening their presents also helped me treasure each moment.
5. At some point on Christmas Day, I recorded our memories (funny things the girls said or did, who was with us, the special things we did) and the gifts received in a Christmas memory book. Later, I would scrapbook our memories as well.
No one ever told me that things would get easier as my girls got older! If only this was explained to me! You would think I would have figured that out but I was so overwhelmed… It has been many years now that my girls have not only helped me with all of the Christmas preparations but showered and put themselves to bed as well! And it has been many years now, that I have not only enjoyed Christmas but looked forward to finding original ways to show those that I love just how much I adore and appreciate them.
Please share your ideas, for appreciating the Christmas season with a young family at home, with the rest of us! And, leave a link back to your own blog too if you have one via the commentluv feature here on the site. If you love this blog, won’t you vote for us? You’ll find the link in the sidebar to the right of this post. If you are reading this post via email, please click here to be taken to the website where you’ll find the vote box.