Most likely no one has ever said, “make your holidays as rushed, stressed and complicated as possible”, yet we do. This year, beginning with Thanksgiving, I am creating simple, enjoyable meals and holiday traditions with a focus on connecting with those I love.
With Thanksgiving tomorrow, and the kids out of school starting today, we are going to spend some time doing the following over the next few days-
-Take a walk in the crisp, cool outdoors.
-Bake cinnamon rolls for our Thanksgiving breakfast.
-Mention specific people, experiences and things we are grateful to have in our lives.
-Play our favorite family games: Yahtzee, Uno and Sorry.
-Watch digital photos rotate on the TV screen as we talk about fun memories we’ve created together.
-Decide on charitable donations we would like to make as a family, of both time and money.
-Read stories together in the evening in front of a warm fire.
-Listen to some of our favorite music while cooking a simple, yet tasty Thanksgiving dinner.
-Decorate our Christmas tree instead of spending the day in stores on Black Friday.
-Call extended family and friends or video chatting with them to connect.
-Watch a movie (My daughter is set on The Addam’s Family)
As Thanksgiving comes and goes over the next few days, and Christmas and New Years begin to arrive, I’ll continue to focus on a simpler holiday season. Some things I am already looking forward to include-
-Family service time packing holiday bags for senior citizens.
–31 Days of Gifts You So Deserve from Courtney Carver.
-Personal reflections of this past year, and goal planning for the coming year.
-Sending Christmas cards and a personal letter out to friends and family.
-Listening to classic Christmas songs.
-Hosting a virtual family Christmas party.
-Eating ham for Christmas dinner! My husband makes it delicious.
-Hanging our homemade stockings.
-Staying up to ‘watch the ball drop’ with my children.
-Beginning the 2016 Simple Year program.
All of these things and many more make the holidays a little more focused, a little less stressed and much more enjoyable. Taking just a few minutes to quiet your mind and find the little things you love about the holidays can make a big difference and take them from jarring to joyful.