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Stress Less Holidays

Men and women handle holidays differently—and that’s all there is to it.

There! I said it!

Stressed elf (photo credit Dylan Tweney,cc lic.)

Stressed elf (photo credit Dylan Tweney,cc lic.)

When I was younger, I refused to believe there was a difference between ‘us’ and ‘them’.
And, then I grew up (thank goodness!).

This Thanksgiving, our daughter asked if we could put up the Christmas decorations the next day – much earlier than usual. My husband was home from work (he works out of town a lot) so it was actually a great idea—all of us can do it together.

Next day, I’m running around gathering all the boxes from high up in the garage She’s ooh-ing and aah-ing as she unpacks the ornaments.

“Momma, look at this one!” for every.  single.  ornament.
I’m trying to share her excitement while I’m struggling to get the tree out of the box.

I’m thinking about everything else I have to do —teacher gifts! clean house! design Artkin cards! blog post! plan Chanukah dinner menu!

Yes, Chanukah, too! Ah, the dream of stress less holidays…

Chanukah Candles (credit flickr.comphotosslgc)

Chanukah Candles (credit flickr.comphotosslgc)

Where’s my husband? Um, that’s him lying on the sofa with his coffee. Ya’ gotta’ be kidding me! Does he not hear my teeth gnashing? See my face getting redder every time I pass by?

We are in two different worlds! He didn’t even notice, much less offer help.

You’re getting me, right? This happens in your home—please tell me it does!
And, I know better. Did I not learn anything about myself last year? Or the year before?

I want to make it happen—make it wonderful! What mother doesn’t?

And if we don’t do it, who will? But, at what cost?  I envy him. I’m overwhelmed, and he’s relaxed and smiling. I want some of that.

I remind myself that the holidays are still over three weeks away. Yes, there’s lots to do, but…

It doesn’t have to get done RIGHT NOW! I tell myself, ‘I won’t die tomorrow if it’s not done.’
I take a breath—enjoy the moment.

This holiday season, let’s give ourselves a break and enjoy each day with our family.
Note to self: anything else can wait – except my family!

Maybe Christmas, the Grinch thought, doesn’t come from a store. —Dr. Seuss

Tell Us

What do you do (or will this year) to relieve your holiday stress? Please share below.

Barbara Balkin, Founder and ARTkinIST 

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