I'd like to learn how to be adventurous when it comes to holiday stress. So this year, I'm trying something new and it's working, for some reason.
Here's what I'm doing, to reduce what I HAVE to do:
- Christmas cards--all filled out and ready to send by Nov. 1. I sent them out on Dec. 1. I'm keeping track of who replies with a card. If they don't, they don't get one next year, unless I know they're infirmed or family (and I might get in trouble at the next reunion).
- I get lists from what my kids and husband want. They HAVE to give me links to online purchases, or they're out of luck.
- I shopped only on Cyber Monday--not on Black Friday. Cyber Monday--since I have the lists, it's easy--point and buy. I was done in less than an hour. To save on shipping, I'm having it all sent to the stores.
- For things I couldn't get online, I took my husband with me to the store on the following Wednesday. BIG mistake. He was crabby. So next year, I'm doing it all on Cyber Monday.
- Wrapping--I do it all on ONE day only. It's stored on a table in our son's bedroom (since he moved out) and that day, I'm going to turn on Christmas movies and wrap, wrap, wrap. All done.
- No tree or decorations. I'm at the stage in life where no one cares. That way, I don't stress about putting things up and taking them down. Not worth it.
- Turn down any parties I can get out of. I hate parties. I hate being nice to people I don't even know, who talk about themselves the whole time.
Then, what I WANT to do, to mentally escape this time of year:
While working on a Christmas story, I'm researching what it's like in small towns at Christmas time. I'm also thinking of where I want to retire in about ten years, planning trips to each of those retirement places. If you're not ready to retire, what about planning vacations? You don't actually purchase anything like hotel rooms, etc., but list what there is to see and do in that town, how to get there, and a ballpark price to get to that vacation. When I'm done with the vacation ideas, I'm going to put them in a notebook and give it to my husband for next year's vacation/retirement research trip. Since I've done all the legwork, all he has to do is choose.
Some year, after the kids are all done with college and leave home, the goal is to visit some place warm at Christmas. I think that'd be the best adventure of all.
What do you do to escape and/or reduce stress at this time of year?
Have a great week!