I love the holidays. I’m sure you do too. Especially once you have kids; you get to experience the magic through their eyes. The last 8 years of being a mom have made each holiday hold more weight to it as well.
I find myself planning months before. My Pinterest board fills with a million cute ideas I see all over the web. Family portrait outfits, new hot cocoa recipes, how to cook the perfect turkey, and the best homemade costumes are all my mind thinks of once summer is over. Don’t even get me started on that elf on the shelf business.
Then reality hits and I’m quickly overwhelmed and unprepared. I start feeling this need to impress my kids. That they won’t be happy unless I do every cool idea I had. As if Christmas will be ruined if I forget to buy them their traditional matching pj’s! Honestly, someone just shake me the next time I say something crazy like, “I have to run into town to buy my kids more stocking stuffers so they are full.” What is that???
This year I’m working on enjoying the moments. Sitting with them watching the lights around the tree instead of compulsively running to grab something that will make the memory “better.” I’m actually planning to not plan. If you know me, you know that struggle is much too real for me.
I’m downsizing my own expectations on myself.
My goal is to take my normal “holiday to-do list” and cut it in half. We’ll still make homemade cookies for our neighbors, but only 3 kinds instead of the normal 6. 😆 We will go cut down our tree, but we might not try to decorate it on the same day. For Thanksgiving I’m bringing a side dish-and that’s it. I usually offer to bring more, but I don’t need to. Who wants to spend their days preparing for the holidays only to look up and realize they missed it?!?
Do you need to downsize your expectations this year? Maybe you struggle like I do to make Christmas the best time ever and find yourself stressed instead of joyful. Try my method. Write out what you want to accomplish and cut it in half. If you need to, ask your spouse or family to help. I’ve found things on my list I thought the kids cared about-but when I asked them they really didn’t.
Perhaps you’ll cut out enough tasks that you can actually sit through an entire movie night without getting up to do something or “pin” any more ideas on your phone. 😉