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Being Supermom at Christmas (Without Being Overwhelmed)
There is something that happens to us ladies as the calendar flips from November 30th to December 1st. Our need to be Supermom at Christmas kicks in.
If it hasn’t yet, Christmas Spirit is sure to be knocking at your door. It may be a gentle tap or it may be a full blown wind, ripping the door off its hinges. Somewhere between being awesome and even more awesome, our expectations take over.
Sometimes taking up more space than the Griswold Family Christmas tree. Before it’s time to start piling on the crazy and unrealistic expectations for the Christmas season, or feeling holiday guilt, let’s evaluate.
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Our “Responsibilities” At Christmas
As Chief of Household Operations, lots of tasks & goals fall under our umbrella of responsibility: Christmas desserts, family outfits, social coordinator, Santa’s helper, expert wrapper, master budgeter, head of decorations committee, Christmas botanist (the tree and poinsettias are not going to water themselves!) and on and on.
While some of us thrive on this, even Mrs. Claus could find herself bogged down between running a household, working, and being a mom & wife. It’s no wonder that the American Psychological Association published a report that stated 44% of women are more likely to feel that stress increases around the holidays.
So, how do we fit everything onto the Christmas calendar without feeling stressed or overwhelmed?
First, I like to remember that Christmas is about coming together with family.
“It’s true, Christmas can feel like a lot of work, particularly for mothers. But when you look back on all the Christmases in your life, you’ll find you’ve created family traditions and lasting memories. Those memories, good and bad, are really what help to keep a family together over the long haul.” -Caroline Kennedy
Second, I use the simple hacks below and start planning early. Here are some tips to help you feel less overwhelmed.
How to Feel Less Overwhelmed at Christmas, Supermom
Use Printables to help you organize. Here are my free PDF Christmas Planner Printables.
Decorate with Red
Some of us feel the need to make our home interior look like Santa’s Workshop exploded, found its way on the Polar Express and landed in every piece of available real estate throughout the house. (Awesome!)
Usually, I go crazy, but when I want to keep Christmas decorating simple, I use this one little trick: decorate with red. Put out red vases, red candles, red dishes, red table runners, etc.
It will feel warm and festive, but the best part, you can carry it into the next few months. Use it to celebrate the New Year (red is good luck in the Chinese New Year), and then into the end of February for Valentine’s Day. There is no sense of urgency to take everything down January 2nd.
If you feel so inclined, pick a few other favorite Christmas decorations to put out.
Save Money on Your Shopping
The Christmas budget can really add stress. Especially, if your budget is… lacking. I like to use Ebates and Ibotta to get special sales and cash back on items I am going to be buying. Both are free services.
Not to mention both Ibotta and Ebates will give you a sign-up bonus (currently $10 each) for your first purchase. Which is actually pretty easy during the holiday season when there are so many good deals.
I go more in depth about Ebates here.
Make a list of Family Traditions & Christmas Festivities
Involve the family by finding out what their favorite traditions are for Christmas. This will help prevent the burned-out, half-in, doing it because I have-to feeling that leads to being overwhelmed.
Ask each person in your family what their favorite tradition is and what activity makes Christmas feel special. You may be surprised at what you hear. Start a conversation at the dinner table by asking your family to fill in the blank; “It wouldn’t be Christmas without _____________.”
Once you go around the table come up with a list of at least one or two things that are really important to each family member. Print out this blank Christmas Bucket List free printable and fill in your family’s Christmas favorites. Pick a day and add each item to the calendar. Get your kids excited by talking about it through out the week. Try something like, “Libby, I can’t wait until this weekend, it’s going to be so fun driving around looking at Christmas Lights. What are your favorite Christmas lights to look at?”
We all have the things we enjoy doing and the things we have to do. Getting your to-do list done requires some planning. Every year I tell myself I am going to bake cookies.
I pin lots of pins on Pinterest, flash through the glossy magazine pages and then come December 25th—nothing. Not one cookie. I end up feeling guilty for letting myself down. Sound familiar?
I quickly snap out of it and realize I will not let a cookie make me feel bad.
Last year I decided that even though it was after Christmas, I was going to bake. So that’s what I did. I spent December 26th cooking up some wonderful chocolate chip cookies with red and green M&Ms. It’s one of the things that I really wanted to do to enjoy the season.
It’s easy for things not to get done because they feel like a chore instead of an indulgence. You don’t need that pressure.
It helps to set a date and get it on paper. Sometimes you still run out of time. In that case improvise. Get the Pillsbury sugar cookies and spend your time decorating them instead.
The kids are going to love any uninterrupted quality time together.
Christmas Goal Setting:
Christmas Goal: Bake Christmas Sugar Cookies
Action Items: Purchase Supplies, Clear a spot on the Calendar.
Supplies to Purchase: Sugar & Sprinkles
Date: Saturday, December 10th
What’s are your Christmas Goals? Make a list and set a date.
There is a baking printable in my free Christmas Printables
Involve your Family
Get your family involved, “many hands make for light work.” Make a list of Christmas goals you and your family decided on as well as action items and supplies need. Then set a date!
Most importantly, if you feel like you’re not doing enough or buying enough, don’t worry, it’s not about the presents, it’s about your presence.
So relax, Supermom. Enjoy a cup of hot chocolate with a slight hint of peppermint swirled in; top with a dollop of cool whip, and sprinkle with chocolate shavings (or just buy it).
Turn off the TV and turn on the holiday classics like Ben Crosby’s White Christmas. Take a minute to take a breath and enjoy your family!
More Christmas Cheer: