Holiday Checklist: Recap

So how much did I get to on my holiday checklist?

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Photo from freerepublic.com. Christmas Grumpy Cat Movie

Well, somethings worked out great and brought holiday cheer. However, others did not work out as well. In any case, I learned some lessons along the way and know there are something’s I will do differently next year. So here is my recap.

  1. Decorate the house for Christmas. (This is one of my favorite things to kick off the Christmas season. We actually got our light up early this year.)
  2. Decorate the Tree. (This was wonderful. It really put our family in the holiday spirit.)
  3. Make Christmas cookies with the kids. (This also was a lot of fun. It was rainy outside so we were in the whole day and spent that time making cookies for our neighbors.)
  4. Make a Holiday Cake. (This was a large endeavor for me but it was so worth it. I learned a lot about time management and transportation.)
  5. Go to a local Tree Lighting. –Didn’t make it to one this year but it is definitely on my list for next year!)
  6. Make Holiday Crafts. (This did not go as well as I expected. Me and my son both got hot glue gun burns and my muffin tree was a complete failure.)
  7. Make Homemade craft with kids to give as a gift.( Even thought this was fulfilling it was tough to squeeze into our schedule. It didn’t help that I didn’t buy enough supplies.)
  8. Go on Holiday Lights Tour. (Going to Hoffman’s Chocolates for this was so much fun. This was one of the best Christmas experiences of the season.)
  9. Visit Santa (Also done at Hoffman’s and it was such a wonderful, community experience. It created a memory we will treasure.)
  10. Mail Letters to Santa (Done)
  11. Take Christmas picture at the beach or a park (I didn’t do this with the family but did have an impromptu visit with a work friend.)
  12. Finish Christmas shopping (Decided to take a day off with the hubby to get some shopping done and it was such fun, enjoyable experience we plan to do this from now on.)
  13. Drink Hot Cocoa. (Totally forgot to make it this year!)
  14. Stay on 21-day fix eating plan. For more information click here to see my post from earlier this month. (I got my workouts in but as Christmas grew closer and I stressed more my eating went off the rails. Back on track January 4th though. If you would like to join me. Leave me  comment!)
  15. Watch ELF (Best Christmas movie ever) –Since Christmas Day was a bit different with family in town I never got to watch my favorite Christmas movie 🙁
  16. Play Christmas music (Listened to some in the car but the best was singing Christmas carols with the kids at Hoffman’s while my mom sang the wrong words. It was a lot of fun.)
  17. Teach kids about Random Acts of Kindness on December 13. You can to by joining izzyasabee’s  Random Acts of Kindness Event. (Although I still did some random acts of kindness I didn’t get to make it into a teachable lesson like I had hoped. Maybe I will try this again for Easter.)
  18. Not stress out about Christmas shopping, remember the spirit of the season.
#18…I most certainly did not accomplish that one this year. I stressed out big time. I felt unprepared through most of the week leading up to Christmas and I was not expecting my family to come over Christmas Day. Trying to get stuff done while still working a full-time was just to much for me and I freaked out. Don’t get me wrong, I love my family but having them over without ample time to prepare caused me to put so much pressure on myself and drove me insame.
So when Christmas came I did not have enough food prepared since I had no time to food shop. I was to tired from having been up late the night before (Totally worth it to play Santa thought!)
I spent Christmas morning cleaning my house in preparation for their visit, instead of playing with my kids. When family arrived I ended up having to break up family squabbles and cobble together last minute food prep. I didn’t really even get to play with my kids most of the day, which I regret more then anything. The kids, they still had a blast and on the bright side I got to visit with family I don’t normally get to see. However, I felt my Christmas was hijacked, hectic and stressed. Not how I wanted it to go.
I figure all of this happened for a reason. I need to learn what was necessary for me to have a better Christmas next year. So here is a list of things I will do differently next Christmas.
1) Take two days off instead of one. One of those days being the week before Christmas so I can have stress free preparation.
2) Plan more kid activates and less of the other stuff.The joy I had from Christmas mainly came from doing holiday activities with my kids so next year I will reduce other things and plan more holiday adventures with them.
3) Get Christmas cards and photo calendars done by November. This year cards were such a headache. Next year, I will have them done early.
4) Do not over do it. I made a three tier Christmas cake for my family to see if I could and it was a great learning experience…but it was too much to do and I would not do it again this time of year. Next Christmas scale it down.
5) Keep Christmas Day as a day relax. I was exhausted by the time Christmas Day came around. I didn’t even make it to church. I didn’t get to play with the kids and I never got around to doing the traditions I actually wanted to do. I will never give this day away to anyone else again. I loved visiting with my family but I needed to give myself the gift of a day off. I will not forget that next year.

Let me know what you think