December is a special month. A month to celebrate holidays, to reconnect with friends and family, a month of eating rich foods (or maybe fast foods), a month of shopping, a month of wrapping, shipping, laughs, hugs, little sleep, stress, and maybe loneliness, too. It’s a busy, fun, and stressful month. I look forward to it every year, and yet every year, I still feel unprepared for it. Every year, I think I’m going to get it all done sooner, so I can slow down and enjoy it more.
I have done pretty good so far this year at getting things done earlier than usual: Christmas cards ordered, photo gifts ordered, some gifts purchased, advent calendar activities planned, pictures with Santa done, Christmas tree up and decorated, some Christmas cookies made, our first holiday crafts made, and stockings are hung. That’s a lot for me to have done already in the first week of December. I feel good about that, but I still have a lot to do. And it seems that the earlier I start, the more time I have to do more activities. It can be a vicious cycle.
So, where does this leave me today? Well, my lack of attention to diet has let foods like chips, soda and dairy creep in. The dairy really had me down over the weekend. I’m also getting to bed late trying to prepare for the next day’s events. That all leaves me feeling tired and a little cranky. I need to turn this trend around before it gets worse, so I can really enjoy this special time.
Cheryl at Gluten Free Goodness inspired me to take control of the situation with her December Sanity Challenge event. She and three other bloggers are hosting the event to help themselves and others make reasonable goals for enjoying a happy, healthy, and sane holiday month. I may be getting a late start, but I’m in! Here are my goals for this month:
- Eat Healthy – I will continue to plan healthy meals every week. I will supplement them with healthy snacks and drinks – not soda and chips!
- More Exercise – I will try to get in a walk at least 3 times a week. If the weather is uninspiring, I’ll put in Just Dance 2 and dance away my stress.
- More Sleep – I often use my evening hours when the kids are in bed to get things done. Too often, I lose track of the time and end of going to bed too late. So, I’m setting an alarm clock to remind me to go to bed every night at 11.
- Ask for Help – I will recruit my kids to help me. They can stamp and seal envelopes on Christmas cards, water the Christmas tree, help put up decorations, help wrap presents, help make holiday goodies, etc. And if needed, I’ll get a babysitter to make use of weekend time.
- Make Time for Myself – I will slow down and relax by getting a massage or a pedicure, or both!
- Enjoy the Holidays – I will do some of the things I enjoy most during the holidays: attend the Nutcracker, listen to Christmas music, make crafts with the kids, bake holiday treats, etc.
- Hugs! – My all-time favorite stress-buster is getting hugs from my kids daily (or hourly if necessary). A good squeeze and smile from them can fix almost anything.
I’m printing out this list and posting it on my computer, my bathroom mirror, and my refrigerator. (I may need a few reminders.)
How is your December going? Need some inspiration or ideas for maintaining your own sanity? Join us!
- Dec. 1 at Gluten Free Goodness
- Dec. 8 at The Daily Dietribe
- Dec. 15 at City Life Eats
- Dec. 22 at Ginger Lemon Girl