I love the holiday season. Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years — I love it all. I also love snow, lights and all things festive. It all makes my heart smile. I grew up in New York City, and I still believe that nothing is more magical than a walk around Manhattan in the late hours of the night during the holiday season.

It’s amazing.

The thing about loving anything this much, though, is the strong likelihood that I will over do it by spending too much, eating too much, stressing out too much, and just plain doing too much of everything. Yep, the holidays can turn me into the captain of #TeamTooMuch. 

I was doing too much before I even became a mom, so you can only imagine what it’s like now that I have three little ones. They make this time of the year even more magical. I can barely contain myself.

In an effort to make this the best holiday season ever–for myself and other moms who are as holiday obsessed as I am–I want to share five things I plan to do this season to help me pull it together and keep it together.

Check them out and let me know if you plan on trying any. I’d love to hear about what you plan to do to actually enjoy some of this holiday magic yourself.

Cut Back on Shopping

We want to make everyone on our list super happy because… well, it’s nice to make the people you love super happy. The problem is, this can lead to overspending and plenty of stress. Get your friends something sentimental (like a framed picture), and your kids one big-ticket item and a few inexpensive things. And if the list seems overwhelming, try easy things like a gift card, a book, a bottle of wine, or an experience (maybe a spa treatment or movie tickets).

Make Self-Care Your Top Priority 

Self-care needs to be a priority. I know you have a lot going on and putting your needs first may seem unrealistic (or even selfish). Do it anyway. If you do not manage your care by exercising, taking time to relax, praying, being still, and much more, you and your family will pay the price. And although self-care is a lot more than just spa visits, I do find that engaging is spa-like experiences during the time of the year keeps me relaxed and calm. A hot bath, some wine, meditating, and even a manicure can all make you feel rejuvenated and ready to take on the world. With all the ripping and running around that moms do around the holidays, you deserve a break!

Take a Sick Day

I really am not trying to encourage you to lie, but if you feel like the stress is truly getting to you, call out sick from work — even if your work is being a stay at home mom. Ask a family member, babysitter or your husband to take over because you just aren’t feeling well and you need to take care of your health for a day before you fall apart. It really is okay to put yourself first (and if your mate doesn’t get it, just paint a picture of what life may look like for the next few weeks if you get really sick).

Spend Less Time in the Kitchen

I am not a fan of cooking meals, but I do enjoy baking. In the past, however, I have spent way too much time in the kitchen. This year I plan to take it easy and pick meal options that are simple. I did that last year and it was wonderful. There is nothing wrong with a cake, a pie, or even an entire dinner from your favorite grocery store.

Give Your Kids What They Really Want

I know this is going to sound incredibly corny, but what your kids really want is more time with you! And I mean quality time, not time spent in the same room but each person is doing something different. Have fun with your family. Play board games and add a holiday spin to it. Create a festive meal together. Decorate the house as a team. Visit an amusement park (plenty of them have holiday themes and are open in December); and just enjoy being in the company of one another. It will make the season a lot less stressful and a lot more fun.

Send me your suggestions because I can always use more, and please be good to yourself this holiday season.

That’s what I plan on doing.


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