Saturday, December 22, 2012

10 Tips for Holiday Bliss

I confess I have not been wishing for Peace on Earth and Goodwill toward Men, instead I've been wishing for an egg roll, a book, and a bath (in a bathtub where my hips don’t touch the side).  I started this month being a bad Scrooge.  My ghost from Christmas past visited and wanted to know where my waist went, the ghost from the present want to know where my mind went,  and my future ghost just laughs at me.    
I'm even having reoccurring dreams, and I know it is a direct result of not being able to find my way with an addition of another human.
Between holiday parties, current events, sickness, work, challenging budgets, deadlines, and gift buying, I feel Christmas has become a full time job instead of a joyous occasion.  

Never fear- I created a few tips that got me through, and now I'm sitting here the Saturday before Christmas as happy as a lark because everything is finished and I can enjoy my family and start my 50 laundry loads. yipeee.

Tip #1:
Accept.  If you have young children, work, or have a life...
you are never, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever,  going to have a Martha Stewart Christmas (even with a maid).


Tip #2:
Create your own simple traditions.   
We always attempt the gingerbread house.
We love holiday movies.
We make reindeer food (oatmeal and glitter).
Connor puts the angel on the tree.


Tip #3:
It OK to Ditch the Elf.  
I am so jealous of all the creative moms on Facebook who have the neatest Elf ideas.  It looks too fun.
Even if Connor wasn't scared to death of Elf on the Shelf-  I know I would have forgotten.  Once the kids are asleep, I fall asleep right after...usually propped against a wall.
For the moms with limited mind capacity due to overload, I found the Santa PNP to be a lot of fun and motivated Connor to stay on the "good list".

Santa PNP-

Tip #4:  Ditch the Pintrest
...but say you did.
For example, I learned to make lovely Christmas candies on Pintrest that I brought to school.
Aren't they lovely?

And it was even more of a lovely experience when I really took them out of this bag.

Tip #5:  Ship Happens- Use It.
This is my shopping style-  Get an idea for someone.  Punch it in on computer.  Buy it.  I don't love the thrill of shopping on a budget.

For those who don't love the challenge of getting your face smashed into a flu infested shopper while juggling children because you don't have a baby sitter.....
Have as much as possible shipped to your house.  

 and then slap them in a bag.

Tip #6:  If you do Christmas Cards, do them in November.  Your weekends will be packed with Christmas parties, lights, fun festivities.   
.....and forget perfect, professional pictures ain't necessary.  

The day I planned to do the kids' pictures our water suddenly shut off in the house, we had two plumbers arrive, and everything was chaotic around us.  The only decorations I had out up was the tree.
I gelled their hair, wiped their faces with baby wipes, and went for it (it was on the agenda).   

I almost put out a Christmas letter detailing the hardships. 

Tip #7:  Stop and smell the roses watch the airplanes fly.
Sure I was tired, had to make dinner, get Carlee, church night, homework, bath, play practice, etc. etc. etc. 
but it was very important for someone to watch the airplanes take off.
sooooo we had to risk getting run over and wait forever, but 
it was worth it to someone.  Maybe he will remember I did take time to watch the airplanes.

Tip #8:  Multitask during Chemo
Mrs. E. and I had a Merry Chemo Christmas.
We exchanged gifts.
She helped me wrap (store bought) cakes, fill a million children gift bags, and we ate caramel corn until we almost puked.
She also helped me sneak a Pepsi past the "FOR CHEMO PATIENTS ONLY" sign (I was really, really thirsty after all that popcorn).
We read the Globe and other tabloid trash
and we wrote to Dear Debbie........
Before we knew it
the time was up!!!

I think we cause quite the scene when we are together.  
That place is a downer, I wish they would hire me to entertain and bring everyone good jokes so they could forget about the terrible C word.
Doesn't she look amazing. She is amazing and funny.
One more treatment...You can do it Mrs. E!!!
btw- thanks for helping me organize

I arrive to Mrs. E. with luggage.

5 pound bag of Carmel Corn:  I never, ever, ever, want it again

Tip #9:

Break the news early:  
You aren't getting everything you WANT for Christmas.  
Connor asked for a BB Gun, a compass, and a toy helicopter.
I hate to say it...but he really would shoot his eye out.

And speaking of gifts, Santa plans to shop for Carlee...... 
in Carlee's closet. 
 There will be plenty of years when I will have to spend.  I will take the one year where I don't have to.  


Tip #10:  Read.  
This year during Christmas there have been terrible things in the news, long waits at the doc's office, and a lot of political warfare on social networking.  I stay offended. I didn't even realize how sad and depressed I was until my reoccurring dreams started happening and people started telling me I was being mean ( I swear I didn't mean to snap your head off because you moved the stapler).
Cut it off, shut it down, and use every opportunity to remind yourself and your children...

Christmas isn't even about us.  

God Bless your loved ones and families.  Whatever your traditions I hope you surround yourself by the love and compassion that Christ offers us on a daily basis.


  1. Love this and love you! Merry Christmas!!!

  2. Have a wonderful Christmas Brianna! I have loved communicating with you on fb, but would also love some time out. We still have to plan!