Stress Less Holiday Challenge – Week 3: Family

Week three is all about Family! Check out our daily challenges on our Facebook group!

This is Cassie and I’m here to talk to you about our Stress Less Holiday Challenge. Join our Facebook Group for lots of tips, reminders, girl power and support all through the month of November! We all know that it takes a village and that’s why we started the group, so we all can stay sane and happy through the holidays! Let’s be honest we started this because I need help. Kimmer and Amber know that they need to help me as much as they can. 

The holiday’s with family can get crazy! Especially when we have crazy families. Mine is definitely crazy fun! It’s hard to balance the family and the in-laws, parties, and do activities and not go insane! Here are the challenges for you this week!

November 13 – Calendar and Make a Pattern: First thing, today you need to break out that calendar that Amber told you to pull out on November 1st. Plan out the parties, get togethers and everything. If you are like Matt and me, our families both live in the same city so we currently try to do both families on the holidays. (Yes. We are nuts.) Write down times and plans, sometimes it’s hard to get your family to nail down exact plans. If you are newly weds then establish a pattern. We tried to plan our thanksgivings around our siblings we would be at Matt’s family on the same year as his siblings and vice versa. Now since Matt and I do both families we make one family the priority each year. 

November 14 – Family Traditions: What are your family traditions? Our Christmas Eve tradition has always been to have pizza. Now we make different types of pizza, each couple brings ingredients for different types of pizza and everyone tries the different types. As you can imagine this takes a little prep.

Go through your traditions and figure out which ones you want to do, and which ones you want to ditch this year. What do you need to execute each one with out a hitch. I’m totally a list person, I don’t want to be going to the grocery store the night before to get something I have forgotten. Write out what you need and what traditions you are going to do in general. As a child I swear we had so many traditions we had to start at noon on Christmas Eve just so we could finish the traditions by 11pm.

Be realistic. Don’t expect miracles. Don’t do the same old thing. Don’t over do it. Don’t worry about how things are suppose to be.

November 15 – Party Planning: There are so many different types of Christmas Parties and it’s hard to remember everything you need when you have so much going on! 

Sit down and write out what each party entails. Plan out what you are going to get for those white elephant parties and other parties. 

November 16 – Non-Holiday Family Activities: With Christmas around the corner, money is usually tight. But you’re going to have your kids home for almost two whole weeks. Find activities that are cheap and easy. I look for activities that will keep the kids occupied for a long period of time, and that doesn’t require a lot of effort.

  • cookie decorating
  • indoor camping/tent building
  • build a snow fort
  • making homemade playdoh
  • Build a ginger bread house
  • Make a race track through the house and race cars
  • Make indoor hopscotch or tic tac toe with painters tape

Be creative and find activities that fit your kids. There are tons of websites that can help you find what you are looking for! Add these activities to your calendar.

November 17 – Family Shopping Trips: Decide when you’re going to go Christmas shopping and who you can take with you and who you can’t. Also, find a sitter and make a plan. I’m super weird, but I’m all about lists. When I shop I like to be in and out, I like to be as efficient as possible. I would research what I want to get to buy for each person online. If I can’t buy it online then I would write down where I’m going to buy everything and plan out the order I’m going to go from store to store. Save time and money if you have a plan.

November 18 – Plan a free day: This is for your sanity. You need a free day and so do your kids. Pick a day or two over the holiday that you can let your kids play with their new toys. That they can go with their friends, that you can decompress.

November 19 – Holiday Suggestion Box: I don’t know if this will even work, but as in teaching, you try things out and then if it doesn’t work next year you don’t do it again. Or you do it again and change it to make it work. So I know that kids love having choices and input. Consider letting your kids put their suggestions of what they would like to do over the holiday in a box. Then you could go through the activities and throw away anything not realistic or too expensive. Then draw them out of the box on a day that the kids are bored and you need something to do. Give it a try and let me know how it works for you.

These are simply my thoughts and suggestions, but I am not an authority! Let us know what you think, any ideas you have or help us all be better; go join our Facebook Group share your thoughts! Help your sisters out!

 

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44 thoughts on “Stress Less Holiday Challenge – Week 3: Family”

  1. LOL Cassie, this is the first time I’ve seen a list of stress free holiday things that make sense to me. It’s always such a mad rush before Christmas and fortunately we don’t have to cope with the Thanksgiving holiday here in South Africa too. We try really hard to do most of our Christmas shopping throughout the year to make things a little easier, but there’s always that one person you either forgot or that’s just become important enough that needs a pressie.

  2. Every year I do my Christmas shopping by Thanksgiving. It makes my life so much easier. This year I am already done with shopping ANDF wrapping already.

  3. This post is so useful, especially when you have a large family and they all gather together for the holidays. My family is very small so I usually just go away on holiday to South America for Christmas to avoid the stress πŸ™‚

  4. My calendar is filling up quickly for the next two months and we love it! This is the beginning of the “silly Season” as I call it and we love everything about the busy filled days ad weekends!

  5. Seems like the entire month of Nov and Dec are just mad rushes. Love the idea of planning the shopping day. I try to do as much as I can online, but seems like there is always that one thing I need from the brick and morter store.

  6. Christmas is truly a stressful time. But I think your tips are very helpful in relieving that. I actually spend all year doing my Christmas shopping with only gift cards as my last minute grabs. I find things on sale or on clearance all year around that I put aside with a particular person in mind for each item. This saves time, money and relieves stress of getting for everyone on the list.

  7. I love being busy with holiday festivities!! I live in San Antonio and my family is in Illinois. I’m the designated cookie baker in my family, so every year I make 150+ cookies and bring them home with me. I also have 22 people on my christmas list lol! It can be stressful at times, but yet so fun!

  8. The holidays don’t really stress me out. I shop for everything online and I don’t have to work as much as when January hits (tax season…. yuck). So I guess I’ll just focus on all the fun activities you suggested!

  9. I SO love this. It gives you time to do everything you need done before the Holidays drop and you’re also going to get the free time that you’ve been craving for at the end of it all. It’s definitely a must follow for stress free planning.

  10. ooo putting family traditions on the calendar is something I should do! I like the idea of scheduling a free day as well. I definitely been needing one of those lately! These are all great.

  11. Lately the word “holiday” by itself triggers my stress to just spike up! It’s just so many things to do a person gets lost easily ! I’ve been planning something like this lately, but I have to admit, you really did a good ob creating a stress free plan!

  12. This is like a life saver for me right now, already thinking of how to survive the holiday stress. Now I can plan my way with this, and hopefully all goes as plan. This was a good read for me, thank you!

  13. Holidays are really stressful, like Christmas season. These are really helpful tips to lessen stress on holidays like Christmas. Nice article.

  14. Planning out a stress free holiday sounds like a great idea. Often times we are just go go go, without taking the time to enjoy the season. When you start early, with a plan you can get everything done and still enjoy your time with friends and family.

  15. Another great stress relieving post for the holidays, well done! I too love my family traditions but have just started a new job so this is a great way to balance my life out! I love the idea of your pizza night, that sounds like so much fun!

  16. This is such an amazing post, I know it is all craziness and rush near Christmas, I am definitely going to try and have a stressless holiday with your suggestions.

  17. I wish everyone would get the memo to relax about the holidays. I find that I do a good job of not freaking out until all of my family members act ridiculous because they are all freaking out and it in turn causes me stress.

  18. Lol I may actually need a calendar – I have zero organization so far! That do comes with the fact that we don’t know yet if we will be with our family if France for Christmas or still in St Lucia. Let’s wait for the hubby’s job to decide πŸ™‚ Then I’ll plan!

  19. Just a few minutes ago i was looking at the calendar to figure out which days to take off from work to prep for the holidays. This time of year is always so hectic but so much fun. This is a good idea to reduce the hecticnes.

  20. Yes, Holiday becomes more stressful as it approaches. I will definitely try your helpful suggestion for me to have an awesome and well planned Holiday.

  21. The holidays haven’t even arrived yet and I am really stressed out already. I need to seriously destress and relax. Thanks for the reminder. This time of year always gets me!

  22. I love this type of post soo much! I wrote down everything from the one before this. I can’t wait to spend more time with my family for this Christmas. In our country we celebrate more NY than Christmas but every year we are trying to change it and to add more traditions and these posts are making it so much easier!

  23. These are AMAZING tips girl, thanks for sharing. I decided this year to try something new and plan out my Christmas and I have a goal list as to when to get things finished. I will be adding a lot of these into to my holidays. Thanks again!

  24. Every year, usually the week after the holiday season wraps up, I say I’m going to get more organized. Then every year, usually the week before the holiday season begins, I laugh and remember I promised not to be at this same point year after year. I definitely need to do something different to have a stress free holiday season!

  25. You’ve got so many great holiday ideas here. The stress that comes this time of year can be overwhelming but it’s so easy to avoid with just a little planning.

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