Every year, I update and repost my top ten survival tips before the holidays begin. Here is the updated list for 2017!
10. Prayer at mealtime ain’t gonna happen without discomfort or giggles if you don’t do it every other day of the year. Ask a grandparent to lead the prayer and even the most unpredictable youngsters are more likely to show respect.
9. Getting together with people who have lots of kids? Plan a craft project, a game, or a storytime with grandparents.
8. Holiday events take a lot of planning, work, emotional energy and time. New host or seasoned, look for ways to help and to say thank you.
7. If you are the host, plan on giving to the point of exhaustion, and afterward, plan a time to rest and reward yourself. #nokidzone
6. Start praying about your holiday events now to prepare yourself to be in a room full of people who have forgotten that Thanksgiving is a holiday designed to be #grateful (to God), and Christmas was created for #family (to celebrate the birth of Jesus). May this be the year that your loved ones understand that holidays are about more than just turkeys and Santa Claus.
5. If you are lucky enough to have an older family member present, ask about their holiday traditions as a child. Put questions in a jar or a box and let each participant answer the same question. Enjoy the different answers! Treasures abound in the memories of our Traditionalists and Boomers!
4. Keep a few conversation starters tucked in your mind to keep communication rolling along. Here are some helpful examples:
- Are there any new TV shows this season that you have gotten hooked on? Video games? What level are you on and how long did it take to get there?
- What good movies have you seen lately?
- How about the storms and fires we have had this year? Do you know anyone personally who has been affected? Is there anything we can do to help? (You could substitute any charity or cause here)
- Do you plan to go to see the lights at the zoo? Have you ever been before? (or whatever local holiday attractions happen in your area)
3. Eat and drink in moderation so that discomfort, roller coaster sugar levels or lowered inhibitions don’t become a launch pad for your bad behavior. No Boomers behaving badly this year!
2. When dorky Uncle George makes that comment again–you know the one–that sticks in your gut and makes you want to deck him? A quick prayer: “Lord, keep me from telling him off!” can save families and lives.
And the number one holiday tip:
#1. Know that God sees your family with all it’s flaws and loves them even more than you do!
Got some more tips? Add them in the comments below–we can all use more tips, right? And your one tip might be more helpful to someone than all my top ten!
Thanksgiving, Christmas or Hanukkah!
Have a wonderful holiday season!
Your holiday season may not be perfect, but I pray it is meaningful…to you.