Surviving (and THRIVING) The Holiday Season Surviving (and THRIVING) The Holiday Season

12 Nov , 2015

My first Thanksgiving as a Mom I had a 6 week old, was living in a one bedroom apartment and ran events for my apartment complex.  This meant that my husband and I had to fix a Thanksgiving meal for 60+ people in our tiny kitchen.  

I was sleep deprived, hormonal and having problems with breastfeeding.  The prospect of getting dressed for the event was overwhelming enough; let alone cooking for all those people.  So, I enlisted some help!  My Grandmother is an incredible cook and drove 2 hours to help and fortunately, my Mom had flown in for a couple weeks too.  We pulled off an awesome meal with almost 80 people in attendance and got rave reviews. I never, ever, ever could have done it alone and I learned some valuable tips that I’ve added to over the last 5 years.

  • Don’t be afraid to ask for help!  Us Mamas really struggle with this one- you don’t have to do it alone and people are so kind and gracious to help!
  • Prioritize- Write you a list of everything you think “needs” done.  Then split it into the things that you “want” to do, “should” do, would “enjoy” and actually NEED to do
    THEN
  • Let it go- Accomplish your need tasks- balancing kids and cooking and cleaning and crafts and gift wrap and perfect holiday home smells and the “perfect Pinterest Holiday” is too much.  Let it go because Motherhood!
  • Practice deep breathing and relaxation exercises. The Holidays are stressful enough without little ones around.  Turn off your phone, get off Facebook and take 3-5 minutes a day to just breathe deeply and relax.
  • Find ways to entertain your children.  Kids Activities Blog has a great list of 100 TV Free Activities for kids so you can take care of tasks without being interrupted (as often!)
  • Babywear/ Toddlerwear (Heck even preschooler wear if you can!)-  Kids LOVE to see what’s going on and feel involved.  Strap that kiddo on and you’ll get free hands and loads more time to accomplish what you need to.  Wearing your child is also great when you’re someplace unfamiliar to help wind them down and make them feel more comfortable.
  • Ask for help- yes, it needs said again.
  • Call on your Tribe.  Think about collaborating on projects with your Mama friends.  Maybe you could all prepare one dish or craft project or bulk purchase some gifts and split them up.  Or do some childcare swaps!
  • If you’re going to be a guest somewhere: Make sure to bring LOTS of activities if they don’t have children or their children have a significant age difference than yours.
  • Give your children responsibility- Small kids are super helpful and love being involved.  Let them help sweep, clean baseboards, dust, pack, cook, etc.  The Happy House Wife has this great chore chart to get you started!
  • Communicate, communicate, communicate!  Explain to your children what’s going on and what to expect from Holiday activities.  Explain to your spouse/ partner what you need them to do to support you.  Over-communicating plans, needs, details and expectations will help avoid meltdowns, arguments and extra stress.
  • Duck out!! Give yourself permission to remove your overstimulated child from the group (or yourself!).  Even stepping outside to jump in a pile of leaves and then returning can be helpful.  Remember, change is hard for everyone and large groups can be a lot for children and Mamas!
  • Enjoy!!!!!! Having small children is so so so so so so hard and so very wonderful.  It passes in the blink of an eye.  Try your best to enjoy Mama!

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Amanda lives in Boulder with her husband and 5 year old son.  She enjoys crafts, reading, hiking and cooking.  You’ll often find her researching about herbs and essential oils.  Her family strives to maintain a Zero Waste lifestyle and hopes to build a tiny house by the end of 2016!

Pin this post!


The post Surviving (and THRIVING) The Holiday Season appeared first on Birds & Bees Teas.

My first Thanksgiving as a Mom I had a 6 week old, was living in a one bedroom apartment and ran events for my apartment complex.  This meant that my husband and I had to fix a Thanksgiving meal for 60+ people in our tiny kitchen.  

I was sleep deprived, hormonal and having problems with breastfeeding.  The prospect of getting dressed for the event was overwhelming enough; let alone cooking for all those people.  So, I enlisted some help!  My Grandmother is an incredible cook and drove 2 hours to help and fortunately, my Mom had flown in for a couple weeks too.  We pulled off an awesome meal with almost 80 people in attendance and got rave reviews. I never, ever, ever could have done it alone and I learned some valuable tips that I’ve added to over the last 5 years.

  • Don’t be afraid to ask for help!  Us Mamas really struggle with this one- you don’t have to do it alone and people are so kind and gracious to help!
  • Prioritize- Write you a list of everything you think “needs” done.  Then split it into the things that you “want” to do, “should” do, would “enjoy” and actually NEED to do
    THEN
  • Let it go- Accomplish your need tasks- balancing kids and cooking and cleaning and crafts and gift wrap and perfect holiday home smells and the “perfect Pinterest Holiday” is too much.  Let it go because Motherhood!
  • Practice deep breathing and relaxation exercises. The Holidays are stressful enough without little ones around.  Turn off your phone, get off Facebook and take 3-5 minutes a day to just breathe deeply and relax.
  • Find ways to entertain your children.  Kids Activities Blog has a great list of 100 TV Free Activities for kids so you can take care of tasks without being interrupted (as often!)
  • Babywear/ Toddlerwear (Heck even preschooler wear if you can!)-  Kids LOVE to see what’s going on and feel involved.  Strap that kiddo on and you’ll get free hands and loads more time to accomplish what you need to.  Wearing your child is also great when you’re someplace unfamiliar to help wind them down and make them feel more comfortable.
  • Ask for help- yes, it needs said again.
  • Call on your Tribe.  Think about collaborating on projects with your Mama friends.  Maybe you could all prepare one dish or craft project or bulk purchase some gifts and split them up.  Or do some childcare swaps!
  • If you’re going to be a guest somewhere: Make sure to bring LOTS of activities if they don’t have children or their children have a significant age difference than yours.
  • Give your children responsibility- Small kids are super helpful and love being involved.  Let them help sweep, clean baseboards, dust, pack, cook, etc.  The Happy House Wife has this great chore chart to get you started!
  • Communicate, communicate, communicate!  Explain to your children what’s going on and what to expect from Holiday activities.  Explain to your spouse/ partner what you need them to do to support you.  Over-communicating plans, needs, details and expectations will help avoid meltdowns, arguments and extra stress.
  • Duck out!! Give yourself permission to remove your overstimulated child from the group (or yourself!).  Even stepping outside to jump in a pile of leaves and then returning can be helpful.  Remember, change is hard for everyone and large groups can be a lot for children and Mamas!
  • Enjoy!!!!!! Having small children is so so so so so so hard and so very wonderful.  It passes in the blink of an eye.  Try your best to enjoy Mama!

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Amanda lives in Boulder with her husband and 5 year old son.  She enjoys crafts, reading, hiking and cooking.  You’ll often find her researching about herbs and essential oils.  Her family strives to maintain a Zero Waste lifestyle and hopes to build a tiny house by the end of 2016!

Pin this post!


The post Surviving (and THRIVING) The Holiday Season appeared first on Birds & Bees Teas.