I wrote this post as part of my participation in a blog tour for The Motherhood on behalf of the makers of Children’s MOTRIN® and received compensation to thank me for taking the time to participate. All opinions expressed are my own.
The winter holidays are my favorite time of year. I specifically love Christmas, Christmas decorations, gift giving, and time with family. But with all of that merriment, sometimes there’s a lot of stress. Too many commitments, long shopping and To-Do lists, and so much hurrying that it’s easy to forget why we’re celebrating in the first place. I first posted about the Motrin Unstoppable Moms campaign back in September when I shared some general thoughts on being unstoppable. This time, they’ve asked me for favorite holiday tips and I’m happy to oblige.
While I like to support local businesses, I do most of my holiday shopping online. It saves me time and money and helps me stay organized. Some of my family members have wish lists, so I rely on those where necessary. I usually spend a few days researching everything before placing all of the orders. If you are going to do your shopping online, make sure you leave plenty of time for shipping, even for places with expedited options. Around the holidays, everything moves more slowly, especially as the weather becomes more unpredictable. Occasionally items may end up out of stock as well. It’s just a good idea to leave yourself some extra time in case anything goes wrong.
We have multiple Christmases to attend throughout the holidays. This means a lot of presents that have to get to the right place on the right day. We use a different wrapping paper for each event so it’s easier to separate everything out when it’s time to pack up.
There is a running joke in the family that the only two things that get me up early in the morning are Christmas and Disney World. It should not be surprising then, that my parents came up with a solution to the early Christmas morning wake-ups. They asked Santa to leave our filled stockings outside of our bedroom doors. We have continued the tradition with our own kids (as it turns out, Christmas doesn’t get me up quite as early as it did when I was a kid). Santa wraps some of the stocking gifts and always tries to include a few small toys in the mix. Our kids can get up in the morning, open their stockings in their rooms (or in each other’s rooms) and wait for a pre-determined time to wake us up. It allows the kids to get up as early as they’d like and start to enjoy some Christmas magic, while we can wake up at a more reasonable hour with enough energy to get through the day.
Holiday Meal Planning
I don’t know how many people join you for your holiday meal, but the average in my family is about 25. Among that group, we’ve got some folks with food allergies, as well as a lot of picky eaters. My parents usually provide the base of the meal, whatever that may be, and then each family brings a few dishes that they know they will all eat. Sometimes it’s an eclectic mix, but everyone ends up with something they enjoy and no one tackles all of the work.
Remembering the Spirit of the Holidays
With all of the craziness, don’t forget to keep the spirit of the holidays in your mind. Let go of the things you can so you can be present and enjoy all of the special moments with family and friends. I personally think it’s also a good reminder to check in on elderly neighbors, or those who may not have someone special to enjoy the holidays with.
Do you have any favorite holiday tips? I’d love to hear them! I can use all the help I can get! You can also head over to the Motrin Facebook page and respond to Kelly Ripa’s tip request of the week. You can win a $100 Target gift card.