The Holidays - Your Family Holiday Survival Guide
Give yourself and your family the true gifts of the season. Take time to enjoy each other, the magic, the spirituality, the lights, the music, the joy of giving, the decorations, the smells, the tastes.
Establish your family’s priorities. Have a meeting and explore what the season means to each of you. Discuss the best and worst of the holidays. Clarify each family member’s dreams and wishes. Come up with goals, and keep them in focus when deciding what to do over the holidays.
Below are some helpful tips for surviving the holidays with your kids.
Establish a family ritual of giving one gift per night for a set number of nights, as in the Chanukah tradition. For example observe the gift exchange from Christmas Eve until New Years Eve. Create a ceremony: Light candles, say prayers, sing songs. Pass them out and open one at a time. As the gift is exchanged express gratitude.
Decide that Santa brings only one gift on Christmas morning and/or the stocking.
Ask Grandparents to buy one gift only per child. Offer choices from a catalog.
Help children clear out old toys and gently used clothing to donate to those less fortunate.
Adopt a needy family and supply their Christmas, from gifts to the feast. This can be a great extended family project.
Have the children make gifts for their Grandparents, teachers and a few close friends.
ON THE ROAD
Each child packs and carries a backpack of activities and snacks.
Pack additional surprise snacks and dollar store items to pull out when desperate.
Listen to books on tape appropriate for the entire family.
Take frequent breaks to run and play.
Travel during sleep/nap time.
ONCE AT YOUR DESTINATION
Follow the tips for festivities and extended families.
Schedule some outings for everyone and some for the immediate family only to give everyone a break.
Limit your visit to two to three days there.
Have your children help to prepare the guest quarters.
Plan one meal to make for your guests as a family.
Once your guests are settled in have a meeting to plan outings (together and as separate families) and meals.
Clarify everyone’s expectations. Set and Implement Goals.
Schedule regular play together and alone times. Being together all day is too much for everyone.
Play games, watch movies, read holiday books aloud.
May you all have a joyous season!