I did it! I mastered all 10 points on the list. Not perfect at all times, but I tried and I did it. This was the least crazy holiday I have ever had. Which is surprising because I have so many changes happening in my life.
So… Here it is step by step….
1. Roll with it and don’t expect a perfect holiday. Well… the week before Thanksgiving my husband received a promotion that requires us to relocate. It has completely turned our house upside down. Needless to say it has lead to a less than perfect holiday season. It is a blessing, but it meant changing a lot. We didn’t spend Thanksgiving together. We only saw each other on the weekends during December… all of which were spent on the road! But, we rolled with it and it turned out that it was perfect for us.
2. Plan, so you won’t have to rush around like a crazy lady. I start shopping in September for Christmas gifts. I love to buy things for family and friends. So it is fun to plan ahead what to get them. I also have to start early because I ship everything to our family in Mississippi in November that way the car isn’t packed to the roof when we go visit everyone in December.
3. Remember your kids are kids, not angels. Both my boys have ADHD. It is always chaotic in our house. Between Thanksgiving and Christmas, basketball season started. We just finished football before Thanksgiving. The boys also take tae kwon do 3 nights a week. So life is always hectic in our home. I have had to repeat this one over and over to myself. I want them to always be perfect little angels. But I have to remember that they are kids. I am way to uptight with them most of the time. I feel like I am always on their case about something. Number 3 is something I am going to work on for 2015. Always remember the boys are boys. That is one of my New Year’s resolutions.
4. Cut your husband some slack, he’s not an angel either. I have to work on this one too. Sometimes I expect him to be able to read my mind and know what I need. I have got to remember that he can’t do that. I grew up in a house of girls and he grew up in a house full of boys. Sometimes I forget that he doesn’t think like me… you know perfect. just kidding. But I think we did ok for the holiday. We spent most of December on the road which is rough on everyone. But we managed to enjoy each other and have fun.
5. Spend less money on stuff and more time with people. We nailed this one this year. This year we stuck to a Christmas budget that worked. We definitely enjoyed spending more time with our family and friends than we normally are able to and it was well worth it. In the end it’s the relationships we have that matter, not the material possessions. We enjoyed all our time with family this year. There was a lot of love in the air!
6. Be thankful for what you have instead of thinking you need more. We nailed this one too! This year we didn’t ask for a lot. We surprised each other with some great gifts, but we were very thankful for what we have We have 2 amazing boys and a solid relationship. We have a great family and friends who are like family. What more can a girl ask for.
7. Enjoy that Christmas cookie and don’t beat yourself up for eating it. Well, I ate my share of holiday food that is for sure. I did have some guilty feelings about eating too much. But I did enjoy eating with good friends and family and not worrying most of the time about what the scale would say.
8. Get rest, so you won’t turn into the Christmas Grinch. Oh I rested. I took off from the afternoon of Christmas Eve until Jan. 4! I took naps almost every day. It was well worth each moment of relaxation. For the first time in a year, I am ready to go back to work and tackle the world again!
9. Love, and show it with patience and kindness. I have to work on this a lot more during 2015. I love a lot and I am normally kind, but patience is a virtue that I lack. I am going to work harder on this. I did try to show love through patience and kindness. I think people who don’t know me well would say that I nailed it. But family that spent the entire holiday with me… they would say patience was lacking and kindness could have been a little better.
10. Think more about what the season really means. The Thanks in Thanksgiving and the Christ in Christmas. I definitely nailed this one this year! For thanksgiving, we gave a lot of thanks. The boys and I discussed what we were thankful for at length in our 4 hour car ride home from grandma’s house after Thanksgiving. And to add Christ back into Christmas, we started praying together as a family again. We prayed the Advent prayers around our table with the Advent wreath. We started praying every night kneeling together in our living room as we say our night time prayers. I started doing 10 minute devotionals each day that have expanded to 15 minutes or more each day.
Well, looking back, I think I did ok with this Challenge. I can’t wait to look for another one to work on next.