Friday 5: 5 Ways To Keep It Together This Holiday!FRIDAY 5 | Nirasha Jaganath | December 18, 2009 at 10:22 pm
The frenzy that festivities bring is sure to make even the most stable of hands quiver as they tackle making each holiday the best ever. The toil of dealing with traditions: do we keep the old or build them new? It is almost a year since the Friday 5 series started so make sure you catch up on older ones if you enjoyed this one. Make it perfect or make it simple? Build it ourself or “outsource” the help? Well, I am no expert but here is my 2 cents worth of advice.
- It is all about them (the kids): Sometimes in trying to build the perfect setting for kids we forget about what they would enjoy. If we just stoop enough to hear what they say and just hush the confusing signs all around we may actually find that kids don’t need the hullabaloo. My family opts out of the formal picture and the famous attractions because we feel life is too short to spend waiting in lines. For a preschooler a place with a 100 rides to 10 rides means almost the same thing, except less time waiting (and less expensive for you).
- And sometimes it needs to be about you! Yes making yourself do somersaults to all the crazy demands from family make you forget that you should be the star act of your own show. Make sure you take the time to pay a little attention to YOU. If that means catering this year, fine. Deciding to just make a simple (different) dish? No one but your mother-in-law might care. A simple meal eaten happily is better than a feast if it stresses all out.
- Location, location, location. Making sure that the place is suited to everyone’s needs makes for an easier dining experience. Sure you had your heart set on your fine china but maybe the timing may not be the best if little junior has not yet passed the “throwing” tantrum phase. Heading out to eat? Choose a place that won’t make you feel all eyes boring into you when the kids act up. Eating at home? Practical seating would make for a more appetizing meal.
- If it is scary, it is scary! I know that you had your heart set on that fancy-shmancy photo with Santa, but if your baby yells like the gremlins themselves are hot on her pacifier, it just ain’t worth it. I have been galled how some parents force the issue. Imagine being forced into something that is so scary for you. Trust me they won’t just “get over it”, in fact it may make it take it take much longer to get over.
- Tone it down! Yes, you can have a (big) blast but that does not mean that you have to spend big bucks to do it. The pressure to splurge and then sink in debt in the new year is not a pretty sight. Be clear about your financials and unless you don’t want an ugly scene (or remark) on the special event day (and who really wants that to mar your day?) then set expectations earlier and let friends and family know. Gifts should not be about tit-for-tat anyway.