When it comes to the holiday seasons, does anyone else feel like that picture above? There are tons of things vying for your attention… the gifts, the food, the time with friends, the time with family. How do you do it all, make everyone happy, and enjoy your holidays together with your spouse? Well if I’m honest, we certainly don’t have it all figured out, even on year 3 as a married couple – I just wanted to start a support group really. Haha, I’m only kidding!! Instead, I’m giving you three things that we’ve learned that helps keep the holidays happenin’ around the Swann household:
Make Plans Early & Manage Expectations
I know that there are so many people around the holidays that you hope to see. Friends and family who only come in for the holidays, not to mention your immediate families, which even if you have a traditional family (a rather rare commodity these days) you could have up to four celebrations to attend if everyone does theirs separately. If you’re going to make time to see everyone, and I mean real time, not just an hour here or there, you’re going to have to start the conversation early. Most people are amenable to working around plans if they know what they are!
Take Time to Start your Own Traditions
One thing that I wish that Morgan and I had started sooner was to start our own traditions. Aside from getting our Christmas tree together, we haven’t really created too many traditions that we do together. Though there was that one time we made a ginormous wreath – maybe we should bring that back, eh Morgan? Here’s the thing – if you don’t start prioritizing traditions early, they won’t happen! Trust us – we learned it the hard way, which is why this year we’re upping our tradition game, but we’ll save that for another post!
Find Something the Other One Didn’t Even Know they Wanted
Ah, one of the hardest tasks of all – but if you really want to #win at the holidays this year, find something that your spouse didn’t even know that they wanted. It doesn’t have to be huge, but its a total the-thought-that-counts kind of thing. For example, the first year that Morgan and I were married we bought this cool vintage mail-sorter cabinet to serve as one of our living room consoles. At the time, almost all of the slots were empty, and so Morgan spent time at one of my favorite vintage marketplaces picking up new additions to our slots. My favorite? An old clock that fits just right!
The key to knocking it out of the park is to make sure the gift is thoughtful. A few suggestions – maybe a handwritten note, that thing you saw him look at in the hardware store and regret buying, OR something in March that he mentioned he wanted. The real trick of that trade – use the notes section on your phone to write down everything that they mention that they want throughout the year! It’s the perfect way to surprise them with something you already know you’ll love. If you missed it this year – be sure to start over January 1!
So there it is folks! Just a few tips and tricks to making the most out of the holidays! What have you found to be the most stressful about the holidays? What’s your favorite thing that you’re looking forward to together this season? I mean, can you even believe the season is upon us already? I can’t wait to hear what you think!