Holidays can be so much fun. You have free time, togetherness, and spending quality time with your family. Holidays can also be extremely stressful. You have free time, togetherness, and spending time with your family. So how can you manage to keep the family fireworks to a minimum?
Come up with a plan. I find that in lieu of starting on the Bloody Marys at 8am, having some kind of structure or schedule in place can make a world of difference. A schedule doesn’t have to be minute by minute, or even followed precisely. Sometimes, just having an idea of the order of the day can decrease everyone’s anxiety, leading to fewer opportunities for arguing and debating a plan.
Consider the interests of everyone in the family. Think about what things each family member enjoys doing and try to come up with something that will make everyone happy. When you realize that is completely impossible, you decide what you’ll be doing as a family and let everyone know. Ignore the tears or protests.
Declare and electronic free day. In all seriousness, I have found that the very best days spent with my family are those where the electronics have been confiscated early in the morning. Actual interaction occurs between siblings, and at least 50% of it is positive.
Give yourself a time out. Just because it’s a holiday does not mean you are required and obligated to spend every waking moment with your kids or family. You are more than deserving of some time to read, work out, do some in store or online shopping of the July sales, or indulge in a game of candy crush. Putting yourself on a time out is healthy and required to keep the family functioning!
Don’t expect perfection. find that surfing Facebook, chatting at times with friends, or seeing pictures on Instagram can often lead one to believe that every family out there is having a picture perfect, Walton – like, smoothly running day of family time. Those cute little parade pictures and photos by the pool never seem to depict the crying kid who didn’t catch the candy thrown at the parade, or the child sobbing after being slammed in the head with a football by his brother. This could not be further from the truth. No family is perfect. Everyone has different challenges. Knowing and embracing your family’s strengths and weaknesses helps you appreciate every day so much more!
PS. When in doubt, hire a babysitter!