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Do you find yourself overwhelmed with too many things to do at Christmas time?

I think I may have created an unrealistic expectation of what I can do to celebrate Christmas and New Year’s Eve. I have promised myself many times over that I will not leave Christmas shopping and preparations to the last days before Christmas. And yet, here is another Christmas on the threshold and I’m still prepping to celebrate.

Christmas wrappingI have a lot on my mind. A lot. Here’s a sample of what’s running through my head… like a crazy monkey chatter to-do list!

Do I have any more presents to wrap? I really need to eat green smoothies for a week. I can’t forget that I need to bring a green salad to the family Christmas Eve gathering. I better put those markers in my purse now, so I don’t forget to bring to my mother-in-law’s house tonight. I hope I have the right food to prepare and cook the meals I need to for the family. Ugh! I still need to get a present to the Nanny. I love her! I wonder if she can just watch the baby all day? No! What am I thinking? She needs to spend Christmas Eve with her family! I’m a terrible mother for wanting to outsource my baby on Christmas Eve.


Another neighbor dropping off more treats – thankfully it has chocolate so I can’t eat it while breast feeding. That reminds me though, I still have a few neighbor gifts needing delivery. When am I going to slow down and write the Christmas letters for family? That Christmas star craft project sitting half completed on my desk isn’t going to happen, but it was a cute idea. Goodness! How many neighbor treats have I snacked on today? Have I even eaten anything fresh today – oh, an orange. Phew. I need more vitamin C anyhow. I can’t forget to post a pithy Christmas message on Facebook and Twitter and Instagram. Oh and LinkedIn. I should’ve done a cute Christmas video. Man! The kids are loud in the basement. I hope they don’t wake the baby. I’m glad they have friends to hang out with during Winter Break though. I really don’t have time to keep them entertained. Did I buy everything I need for Christmas presents? Do I have enough day-old bread for baked french toast breakfast casserole?

OK, I’ll stop there.

But, seriously. That’s a running list of things that I was literally thinking just now.

Sure, I’ll get most of that stuff done. You know why? It’s important to me right now. I want to be busy with family stuff for Christmas. At the end of year, I want to have fun ways to connect with people near and far. I also like the hustle of the holiday season. It just feels kind of fun.

But, I don’t like the feeling of too much to do. So, next year, I’m going to streamline a few things that aren’t working for me. In fact, I’ve created a list of things I want to do more and less of next year. Here are a some ideas on the list already:


  • Send a Christmas card with new family picture. Something fun and shows off our personality. Trust me, in this family, we got loads of personality.
  • Decide on Christmas gifts in October, purchase in November. Store in a secret place.
  • Service project with the kids. They need a dose of reality. (Maybe I’ll do service projects throughout the year for that matter).
  • Have a Christmas party with other couples. I like my friends. I like having adult conversation without the distraction of kids all the time – I bet they’d like a break from their kids too. Just sayin’.

Don’t Do:

  • Worry about how Christmas will be for the kids. It doesn’t matter.
  • Eat crap food.
  • Work.
  • Anything that feels out of alignment with enjoying the season.

I’m sure more will be added to these lists so that I’ll be less busy at Christmas next year, but for now I think that I’ll go enjoy some snacks a neighbor brought over.

What are you doing to reduce the “busy”ness of Christmas time in your life?