Bah! Humbug! Never appeals to me. I love the holiday season and I want everyone to know it! But it can be stressful when trying to do it all. There are presents to buy and wrap, Christmas concerts and plays to attend, office parties to endure, and decorating and cooking that simply cannot wait until tomorrow. How do you do it all and keep a smile on your face? Here is what I do to keep the jolly in the holly, jolly Christmas!
1. Give to Others
I know. How could you possibly fit another minute into your schedule? Really, this is the best way to keep that smile on your lips. When you see the pleasure others receive when you give of your time and love to those in need, you can’t help but feel happy. Make a food basket, volunteer at a soup kitchen, or give to an Angel tree.
2. Go Sight Seeing
Don’t miss all the spectacular yard displays. It isn’t enough just to see them while passing. Take a night and dedicate it driving around and seeing all the lights. Take some hot chocolate in a thermos, walk up and down the sidewalks of your neighbor hood and just enjoy the peace and quiet and beauty of the lights.
3. Enjoy the Anticipation
How exciting it is for me to watch my kids eyes grow with excitement at the lights and decorations! Writing the letter to Santa and trying to decide, with the kids, what we all want for gifts just makes the excitement mount and build up to an explosion on Christmas morning! Enjoy this time and let it take you back to your childhood.
4. Enjoy the Scents of the Season
It is relaxing and refreshing to smell evergreens and pine trees. Gingerbread revs up your smiles. Peppermint aroma energizes weary and tired spirits. Fresh sugar cookies put smiles on everyone’s faces, old and young alike. When you start feeling stressed and the jolly goes folly, soak up some holiday smells to bring back a little peace and happiness.
5. Play in the Snow
You can build snowmen, snow forts, and snow angels. Have a snowball fight. Maybe you can take the afternoon and go sledding. Do you like to ice skate? Grab a friend and be silly for the day and go ice-skating. If you do not have a pond close by, visit an ice rink. Just have fun!
6. Relax around the Tree
For years, it was my ritual, after our tree was decorated and everyone else was fast asleep, to lie down and admire the tree and lights. The weird about this is how I admired the tree: from underneath the branches. Yes, I loved to lie down under the tree and look up at the tree. I would dream of Christmas morning and the smiles and laughter I would hear as the children enjoyed their gifts and treats. It was the perfect ending to the perfect day.
7. Wrapping Gifts
It is a proven fact that giving to others brings true happiness. When I am tired and stressed, I go into my room, lock the door, and wrap gifts. I smile when I think the joy my loved one will receive from my gift.
8. Bake Cookies
Sugar cookies, gingerbread, and chocolate chip. Any cookie is better at Christmas time. Especially when you can decorate them. So next time you need some holiday cheer, bake some cookies and ask you children to decorate them with you. You will be smiling in no time!
Although Christmas can be hectic, it is supposed to be the happiest time of the year. So, what can you do to have your self a merry little Christmas? Or a merry big Christmas?
Top Photo Credit: summerbloomz etc