The holidays can be a hectic time. It seems as though there are endless checklists for things to get done in time for Christmas, like finalizing travel arrangements, cooking Christmas dinner, buying presents, etc, etc. You have enough on your plate already, so let’s go through a list of things you can scratch off on your to-do list:
Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff
In the thick of the holiday chaos, it’s so easy to get caught up in the little details. Maybe you didn’t get a chance to finish your holiday decorating, forgot to pick up the apple pie for dessert, or didn’t have time to make the perfect Christmas playlist. Maybe the kids don’t want to wear their Christmas sweaters for the family photo or the dog chewed up all the wrapping paper. It’s okay! Give yourself permission to take a deep breath, acknowledge the situation, address it, then let it go. In the end, none of these little blunders really matter, and you can still have an amazing holiday.
Don’t Touch That Phone
This is a great rule for everyone to follow during holiday get-togethers. Sure, a phone is handy for taking impromptu family photos and videos, or face-timing with distant relatives, but as soon as social media beckons, it’s time to put it down. There will be plenty of opportunities after the party to share pictures and tag everyone, but it doesn’t need to happen right then and there. Cherish the real-time company your family and friends are offering in the moment, and save the ‘likes’ for later.
Nothing kills the mood quite like having to rush around at the last minute. Whether you’re the Christmas host or attending a party outside your home, leave plenty of time to get things done. Make a list and get all (yes, all) Christmas shopping and gift wrapping out of the way early. Decorate the house a few days before your event, and leave plenty of time to cook meals (allowing extra time for mishaps and surprises!). If your family is attending a party, aim for everyone to be ready early, especially if you’ll be driving in winter weather. This is all easier said than done, of course, but the relief of having things done ahead of time leaves you more time to relax and enjoy the festivities.
Don’t Miss the Little Moments
Christmas is a wonderful time to step back and truly enjoy what’s happening around you. This year, try to pay attention to the little moments that often slip by: the look of surprise when a child gets exactly what they wanted this year, the feeling of hugging loved ones you haven’t seen in awhile, the delicious Christmas aromas that fill the air, funny dinner conversations, or the beautiful twinkle of lights on a Christmas tree. This is a special time of year with so many wonderful little moments available to take in and turn into precious memories.
At the end of the day, don’t forget that Christmas is a celebration. Whether you gather to celebrate the birth of Christ, or you simply enjoy the traditional convening of family during the holidays, Christmas is a time for love, joy, reflection, and giving yourself a break. It can be easy to get swept up in the hullabaloo of holiday shopping and Instagram-worthy Christmas decorating, but the true magic lies in being able to spend quality time with your loved ones.