Don’t forget to ENJOY
Hands up if the approaching holiday season lends a little extra stress to your everyday busy life? It really is a roller-coaster of celebrations with Halloween, Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas and New Years’ all happening in a short few months. Schedules are overflowing with events such as family meals, parties and kid’s activities that can leave us feeling drained. That’s before we’ve even thought about buying and wrapping gifts or grocery shopping and cooking for our guests. Not only are we stretched in all directions, the financial and mental strain can also take its toll. Here a few tips on how to get prepared for the holidays – I hope they help ease the stress and make it a season of JOY!
Plan Ahead! Yeah right?
Let’s face it, holiday music being played in the stores in late October can be a little irritating, however it’s never too early to start planning and preparing. But, if you find running behind, don’t be afraid to simplify things. Try to be realistic and don’t feel bad about cutting things from the list. Go back to the basics! Try to remember to relax, laugh, and unwind. We don’t need to do away with gifts altogether, but maybe try and not be so excessive. How about trying to be a little more mindful with our gifts and focus more on time spent with the ones we love, rather than things.
The B Word
Budget! It’s so easy to get carried away with holiday spending and there’s always an endless list of items to buy. Try to set a budget for the main things like grocery shopping and gifts and stick to it! No one likes when those January statements start rolling in!
You could agree, as our family does, to just give presents to the children, which makes it easier and WAY less expensive. It also means less clutter being added to your home, and clutter equals stress. Another fun thing to do is a gift exchange, where everyone only gives one gift, often with a spending limit. You might decide to give yourselves a ‘family experience’ rather than exchanging physical gifts. If you are feeling particularly charitable, you can do away with gifts all together and donate the money to a good cause (My kids aren’t there yet, but I have future MOM goals).
De-Clutter & Breathe
Clutter can add to anxiety and make it hard to focus, so start your holiday season with a clean slate. This is a good time to get rid of the old and make way for the new, be it your pantry, bedrooms or closets. Donating old toys and games as well as clothing and unwanted gifts to charity can be a fun thing to do. Lately, I’ve been in an If I don’t love it, donate it mood and it feels SO dang good!
We all love to eat and drink over the holidays, don’t we? Cooking and preparing for a houseful of folks takes a lot of time and effort, and is best not left until the last minute. A good trick is to delegate as much as possible, saving you precious time and money. Ask each guest to contribute and try preparing dishes that can be frozen ahead of time such as pies, cakes and cookies. This can be a lifesaver if you have unexpected guests, just grab something you prepared earlier from the freezer and hey presto you appear to have your life all together!
Family Traditions Old & New
We all get carried along in the festive chaos, sometimes without thinking about what’s important to us. Do we need to continue child-hood traditions for the sake of it? For some people the answer is yes, their 45-year-old daughter may still want to receive their stocking from Santa or decorate gingerbread houses. But for others, they may have outgrown those old traditions, so it could be a good time to ditch them and move on. Time to make new memories!
It’s easy to get caught up in all the hullabaloo and forget to take care of yourself. It’s important to carve out some time for self-care. Put a face and hair masque on while wrapping presents or better yet throw it in a gift bag and treat yourself to a chilled glass of wine. Filling every second of every day can leave you feeling burnt out. And, don’t forget to get your hair done! Santa does not like roots.
This to me is the most important! There are many ways we can cut down and scale back without sacrificing the magic and wonder of the holiday season. Giving gifts in a more meaningful way can help eliminate the clutter and waste, but not the joy. We all need to slow down and enjoy ourselves, focus less on the ‘stuff’ and more on the important things like time, health, and family & friends. We might even save Santa a few bucks in the process!
Everyone here at Adore Hair Studios wishes you and yours a very happy holiday season! And look forward to seeing you soon.