Now we all love Christmas, its the holiday that virtually everyone has off and even if you don’t celebrate per say there is still a real buzz around it. Now in our house we visit families, enjoy spending time with everyone, eat loads and generally be very very merry (most of the time). Its also a time where you are managing everyone’s expectations for at least 2 whole weeks, if not longer, so here are some hints and tips on being prepared, making the most of and surviving as well as ensuring we’re all still friends at the end of it.
- Keep your camera’s handy, whether its on your phone, that hugely expensive DSLR or a Digi camera – The memories you will want to capture can be treasured forever when you’ve got it on camera. Perhaps granddad has fallen asleep and his beard is in the trifle or the toddler is walking around with his newly gifted trousers on his head, be great to make sure you’ve snapped those shots as they happen!
- Put a couple of playlists together for the different occasions, we love to dance to Christmas songs whilst decorating the house and I love to have music at the ready for present opening time (as its usually very very early, try 5am!). Adding to that, we sing at the top of our voices, unluckily for our neighbours.
- Prepare a Christmas eve box with little games, snacks for Santa and Rudolf, a Christmas movie, Christmas story book, hot chocolate for bedtime or even with the movie, marshmallows to toast, popcorn, Christmas pyjamas or onesie, slippers, a soft toy and of course gingerbread. Those impatient little ones will surely be distracted for a couple of hours and miraculously be soo tired that they don’t insist on waiting up for Santa, here’s hoping! Over the years trends for these have increased so you might want to invest in making one, or even buying one.
- For gifting you should ensure you have copious amounts of wrapping paper, tags, bows, wasi tape and of course scissors. I love brown paper wrapping and then jazzing it up with colourful bows and ribbons, I have to say that my toddler doesn’t have the same appreciation. So we generally have lots of different wrapping paper and layer it up so that the tree looks a feast.
- Ensure you schedule time out of the house and spend some much needed family time, go for long walks – has the added bonus of burning off all that food, go to your nearest nature trail and enjoy the fresh air, or alternatively have a duvet day and movie marathon!
- Have some ‘you’ time, its a very busy period and if you’re like me there is always lots going on so make sure you block out some time and focus on self care. After all, if you’re calm and relaxed then so will everyone and everything around you be.
- Plan for 2018; book or block out some time for trips and make sure there are adventures booked into the year, this gives you all something to look forward to as well as breaking up key parts of the year. Its also a nice thing to do as a family.
- Have some surprises up your sleeve, whether its an impromptu baking marathon, a trip to see friends or a games day wearing funny costumes, mix it up.
- If you’ve got older children then think about a Christmas day treasure hunt so that they have to work out where their presents are, although they might get a little frustrated if they’ve spent ages trying to find them.
- Finally, enjoy every minute. Things change so quickly and next year is going to be a whole different ball game so enjoy, laugh lots, eat even more and most importantly make the most of all the time you spend with the people that you care about.
Do you have any other hints and tips? Anything that I didn’t mention? Hope you have a fantastic festive period and make wonderful memories together!