Saturday, December 24, 2011

Skipping the Stress of Christmas - Part Two

When we were together last, I mentioned a few strategies that I was trying in order to have a stress-free Christmas.  Or at least a Christmas with less stress than in the past.  I made a list of all the things I wasn't doing.  Today I thought I would share the things I am doing.

* Having the kids do more handmade gifts for family members. It gets them involved.  They have a stake in the whole process. Which is always a good thing in my book. They take pride in the giving aspect and they also end up learning to appreciate handmade gifts they receive.  Bonus. 

* Making more handmade gifts myself.  I recently took up crocheting.  It's not just for granny types, dear reader.  Plus, it gives me an excuse to catch up on all my reality tv shows.  I DVR the shows, watch at my leisure (ha!) while crocheting.  On the commercials, I switch out loads of laundry, put dishes into the dishwasher and wipe down counter tops.  It breaks up the chores into small, less agonizing segments of time.

Less stress, see?

If that isn't convincing enough, consider the fact that the more gifts I make, the less time I spend in the stores.  The less time I spend in the stores (and on the road fighting idiots traffic), the less I get annoyed with mankind in general.  Joy to the World!

* Fewer, but more meaningful gifts.  As a rule, I would rather give a plethora of smaller things than one or two big gifts.  Don't know where that came from, but there you have it.  This year,  I put a little more thought into the chickadees gifts and bought fewer. 

Then, when I was wrapping their gifts last week, I was convicted and returned a gift that I bought each one of them.  Even in my more thoughtful mode, I did too much.  How can I teach my kids that Christmas isn't about presents, when I give them a deluge of gifts?  It's not that I don't want them to have things, I just want them to appreciate what they do have.

How are you enjoying the season?

Counting it all less stress joy,

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