Almost everyone has a images in their mind of the perfectly organized relaxed Christmas.  It may be images from  childhood, ones we’ve seen in the movies, or those we’ve pinned to  pages and pages of Pinterest. It’s pretty normal to dream that we can accomplish them all, and have a perfectly organized Christmas. This perfect plan holds court our minds,and if you are anything like me, it ends up becoming an unrealistically big list of hopes and desires that are often chosen for superficial reasons, without enough time to accomplish them. The end result is often a rushed and harried time with the possibility of actually hurting our health.

christmas

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I will never be accused of being super organized.  But some people think that I am, simply because I’ve figured out how to get most of my goals accomplished without officially going nuts.  Christmas is one of the most challenging times of the year for many because we often carry so many unrealistic expectations

 


Here are some hints to help you do all the great things your family would enjoy – without wearing yourself out.

    1. Get the family together and have them help make a list of the things they enjoy about the Christmas season, at the top put the things that are non negotiable. As Christian parents, our family likes to put Church services and activities at the top. The message of Christmas is first and foremost for us. We choose to have Christ as “The Reason for the Season.”
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    2.  Next have each person pick one thing that they really want to do. You may find that your list does not match their list.  You may think that everyone wants to make a gingerbread house, but instead find out that they really want to bake and decorate sugar cookies. You may think that everyone will want to go into the mountains and cut down your own tree, but the family may be happy with a trip to the tree lot, or even prefer to purchase an artificial tree, and never deal with a cold day of traipsing through the snow, for what may be an imperfect tree dripping needles everywhere.  After you have made that list, pick one day to accomplish each one.
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    3.  Pull out a calendar and write in the must-do days first – like the Church Christmas dinner. List the things you need to do or purchase for that. Then pencil in a day for each of the goals that your family has chosen – a day for Christmas baking or tree gathering, or decorating. We have chosen one day each week to prepare decorations for our church.
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    4. Share tasks:  You may have always been the one to decorate the tree “perfectly” This might be the time to think about actually having the kids do it. If you are OCD, you can move a few of the decorations around later. Consider drawing names to fill Christmas stockings or for an extended family gift exchange. It will save you time, money and stress. Have others bring dishes to complete your Christmas dinner, or to add to your parties.  This year my sister offered to roast the turkey for Thanksgiving.  I took her up on it!
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    5. Simplify tasks: You probably don’t need to make 10 different kinds of cookies.  Consider having a cookie exchange and you’ll end up with a great variety of treats without having to bake for hours and hours.  You might pre-order a fully cooked Christmas dinner from your grocer, which you will only have to reheat. You can serve it up on your best china and have a beautiful meal without the stress.
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    6. Once you have whittled down your lists, add a few things that will make YOU happy – get your nails done, spend a day making little choo-choo trains out of candy bars, or whatever makes YOU happy.
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    7. Check out my “What to Buy” list for December. Christmas shopping can drive all of us crazy. Really, really consider shopping online.  Amazon is very cost effective especially if you use Amazon Prime. Your gifts will be delivered right to your door or to your grand kids clear across the country in just two days, without any shipping charges. They’ll even wrap them for you. AND you won’t have to fit in a trip to the post office to mail those gifts out. You can get a free month trial just in time for the holidays, or you can give the gift of Amazon Prime.

 

 

 

If you find that you still need to mail, consider flat rate boxes.  Stuff them as full as you can for a single charge, and you can even schedule a pickup by the Postal Service.
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8. When you’re fixing supper, cook up double recipes and save half in your freezer for an easy meal on a busy day.    While you’re at it make up a couple of sides for special meals. We cook up extra brown rice and quinoa, ground beef and chicken breasts, cut into cubes to freeze for a head start to a quick meal.
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9. Keep a running list of supplies you might need – either on your cellphone, or on a magnetic pad of paper attached to the fridge.  When you are out and about, you can pick them up.
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10. This last one is perhaps the most difficult to achieve: Do your best to get seven or more hours of sleep a night. My Daddy was an MD, and he said that sleep is the most valuable health tool we have.  This will help you make it through   Christmas and beyond with your health intact.  Here are some other great hints to help you stay well!
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Here are some other Christmas posts to enjoy!
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What do I get My Daycare Kids for Christmas – Little Sprouts Learning

How to Have Stress-Free Holidays – Ever Change Productions

DIY Decorations: Picture Perfect Wreath  – Curbside Overhaul

Good Deeds Your Kids Will Cherish During the Holidays – House of Fauci’s

Why I Start Celebrating Christmas Before Thanksgiving – The Peculiar Treasure

Granny’s Christmas Party Mix – Hello Daycare

HAVE A RELAXED, ORGANIZED CHRISTMAS – Even if You’re Not

30 thoughts on “HAVE A RELAXED, ORGANIZED CHRISTMAS – Even if You’re Not

  • November 14, 2016 at 11:49 am
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    Love your idea about having everyone pick one thing they would like to do. With so little time, we may find that they want to do less than we thought- or at least different things than we thought.

    Reply
    • November 14, 2016 at 8:17 pm
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      True. I’ve never really asked my husband what he wants to do, because he’s generally happy to watch in the background, but this year it’s going to change!

      Reply
      • November 19, 2016 at 12:50 am
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        My hubby is the exact same way. He basically says “I liked colored tree lights and don’t spend too much money” lol!!!!!

        Reply
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  • November 14, 2016 at 12:20 pm
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    These are super great tips. You’re totally right about having everyone make the lists. That can really help make sure you’re not just stressing yourself out for no reasons! Thanks for sharing!

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    • November 14, 2016 at 8:16 pm
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      I’m a list lady! I rarely can find them, but they’re there somewhere!! That’s why we use the calendar a lot!

      Reply
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  • November 14, 2016 at 9:58 pm
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    Yes Amazon Prime is my go to! I love your tip to get plenty of rest too…this is a must during the busy holiday seasons and key to staying happy and healthy! Thank you for your post!

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    • November 14, 2016 at 10:43 pm
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      In the relationship status on facebook, my family jokes that I should put. “In a relationship with Amazon Prime.”

      Reply
    • November 16, 2016 at 5:05 am
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      Appreciate it, Christina!! Hope you feel better!

      Reply
  • November 18, 2016 at 2:12 pm
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    These are all wonderful tips! I’m somewhat organized when it comes to certain things, so I can always use the extra help! Micah and I are starting our own traditions so I’m looking forward to building upon those! We have yet to have Christmas at our house since we’re still traveling to our families for Christmas. I look forward to when we host! 🙂

    Reply
    • November 18, 2016 at 7:11 pm
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      Absolutely build those traditions. We have changed some of ours slightly over the years, but they sure are fun to have.

      Reply
  • November 18, 2016 at 2:46 pm
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    Great tips Marjie. You are definitely effortlessly organized!Thank you for sharing!!

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    • November 18, 2016 at 7:10 pm
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      Awww! Thanks Hadia. It only looks like I’m organized (from the outside!)

      Reply
  • November 19, 2016 at 2:18 am
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    I really like the idea of having everyone pick one thing they want to do.

    Reply
    • November 19, 2016 at 10:41 am
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      My bunch is mulling over what they want to do most. We had a ball tonight, buying our Thanksgiving Turkey. We made a list of the sale items we wanted to buy (we had to spend $50 to get our turkey at a bargain price.) Spent $51 and got all we needed. They told me that this is the kickoff to the Christmas season. I never knew how much they loved it.

      Reply
  • November 19, 2016 at 2:22 pm
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    Awesome tips. I love the idea of putting everything on a calendar. Even if you have to change things around at least things are scheduled and much more likely to happen.

    Reply
    • November 19, 2016 at 6:43 pm
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      That’s for sure! Not sure what I would do without mine.

      Reply
    • November 19, 2016 at 6:46 pm
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      My pleasure. I firmly believe that even the most disorganized of us can make good organized plans.

      Reply
  • November 20, 2016 at 10:17 pm
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    Hard to believe Christmas is right around the corner, thanks for the great tips!

    Reply
    • November 21, 2016 at 6:38 am
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      Glad to be a help. Christmas has really raced up on us this year!

      Reply
  • November 21, 2016 at 12:38 am
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    Staying organized throughout the holidays makes life so much easier. It’s good to have a plan installed on how to tackle the big to-do lists!

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    • November 21, 2016 at 6:37 am
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      That ‘s for sure. It seems that this time of year time absolutely flies, and it IS good to have a plan installed.

      Reply
  • November 21, 2016 at 3:36 am
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    So many great tips! I especially like the idea of finding out what is everyone’s favorite thing to do and then doing one from everyone’s list.

    Reply
    • November 21, 2016 at 6:35 am
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      This is our first year to do this. I was surprised what they DIDN’T want to do! It makes things easier, for sure.

      Reply
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