Do you find yourself overwhelmed by the stress of the holidays every year? If you are like me, you might tell yourself that this is the last time you will greet the holidays as a disorganized mess. You probably find yourself vowing that next year will be different every.single.year. The thing is, if you want to have peace and calm rather than stress and overwhelm this Christmas, you have to approach the holidays with a different plan.
The holidays are fast approaching, and there are so many things that need to be taken care of during that time. Usually we have additional places to go, more people to see, and a never-ending list of things that need to be done. And, this brings stress, overwhelm, and frustration for so many of us.
But, peace and calm sounds so much better, right?
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Often what goes wrong is that we start planning for the Christmas season too late. I’m all for enjoying Thanksgiving, and I love that. However, the time between Thanksgiving and Christmas just isn’t enough time to get everything done to avoid all the holiday stress.
So, let’s talk about 10 super simple things you can do right now for more peace and calm this Christmas.
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Update your calendar
I don’t know about you, but my holiday calendar resembles a train wreck. Things like concerts, recitals, parties, shopping… the places I’ve got to go never seem to end. Right now, fill in your calendar with everything that you know of so you can head off any potential conflicts at the pass. I already know of three times that I’ve got to be in more than one place at a time during the month of December. Ugh. At least I know about it now and can work toward a plan to deal with it.
Working on your Christmas calendar now means you can see problems now. Before they actually happen. This will make for less stress and more calm later.
Create a holiday recipe plan
Will you be taking food to parties? Do you like to make special meals during the holidays? Take the time now to create your holiday recipe plans so you’ve got that out of the way.
This could also be an opportunity for you to create some simple “go to” kind of meals for when the days get crazy during the holiday madness.
Choose some holiday recipes now, both for the special occasions and for the every day meals.
Make your holiday meal shopping lists
Once you know what you’re making for meals to some extent, you can start working on the shopping list that you’ll need to make all of these special dishes. In fact, you can even start shopping for these things now. I always need extra sugar, vanilla, flour, and extracts during this time. I like making sure I’m well stocked in these things ahead of time. This means that I need to create my shopping lists, too.
Do you have some projects that are partially finished? My garage happens to be a nightmare right now. Now is the time to complete these projects since you will most likely be short on time during the holiday rush.
Think of it as tying up any loose ends now so you can just focus on all the holiday events and activities from Thanksgiving to Christmas.
Plan for storage
Will you need new baskets, bins, or storage for more things? Christmas gifts are right around the corner. When everything from Christmas comes in with a crash landing, you will have to find a place for all of these things.
Start thinking and planning for these things now. With a large family, storage is something that I am always addressing. Even with just yourself the reality is that most likely you will bringing some new things into your home during this holiday season. Plan ahead by determining how you will be storing these things now.
Appointments during the holiday season can be hard to come by.
I am referring to appointments for things like haircuts, manicures, pedicures, and maybe even a massage if you’re really lucky. As a hairdresser for years, I know how important it is to get on the books now! That way, you’ll actually get in to who you want when you want.
Do you also need to schedule any health appointments during this time of the year? Plan for them now.
Put some freezer meals in your freezer
Don’t let the thought of freezer cooking scare you.
It really can be as easy as just cooking two of many of the meals you cook so you can throw one of those meals in the freezer. This, too, qualifies as freezer cooking.
But, nothing compares just to getting some delicious meals in the freezer.
This takes a bit of extra time now, but it will save you a ton of time and money later since you won’t be going through the drive-thru.
Looking for an easier way to freezer cook?
Check Christmas lights
I know I am not the only one who is greatly annoyed with Christmas lights that don’t work.
It seems that I’ve always got next to no strings of working Christmas lights that actually work. I have no idea how it is possible.
Somehow, the lights I put away at the end of the season that were working just fine have a tendency to stop working while packed up during the off season.
Please tell me this doesn’t happen to only me.
Save yourself the frustration of discovering this in the midst of things by checking your Christmas lights now.
As a mom of two girls who are of babysitting age, I can say that babysitters during the holidays are in high demand. If you will need a babysitter during the holidays, you want to schedule them as early as possible. You’ve already updated your calendar, now use it to schedule those babysitters ASAP.
Not only will you need babysitters for things like parties and gatherings that take you out of the house. But, how nice would it be to have a babysitter come over just to give you a little extra breathing room during the holidays…awesome, right?
Imagine if you had a babysitter come over for three hours while you wrap presents. What if you had an extra set of hands to help keep up on the house cleaning?
Hiring a little extra help during the holidays is an amazing gift you could give to yourself.
Traveling? Arrange for home care
Holiday travel plans can be so overwhelming that it is easy to forget about the fact that we may have pets, houseplants, or other things that need to be cared for while we are gone. People’s schedules get crazy during the holidays, so if you will need help in your home while you are gone, talk to family members or friends about it now.
The holidays are often the best time of the year, but they can also be the most stressful time of the year. It doesn’t have to be this way, however. Use this list to create a game plan that will allow you to experience a Christmas season that is filled with peace and calm.