We’re only a few days away from Christmas and I’m sure we can already feel the holiday rush. Malls, restaurants and even the roads are starting to get more crowded and congested with everyone shopping, going to parties, meeting up with friends, and going to weddings (yes, it’s the peak season for weddings). Apart from being the most wonderful time of the year (as the song goes), it is probably also one of the busiest. Here are some tips to enjoy a stress-free holiday, amidst the hustle and bustle around us.
Plan early and carefully
Whether you’re going on a trip to the beach, visiting a Christmas attraction in the city, or just having a simple Christmas dinner with family and friends, it always helps to plan early and carefully. Think: Everyone else is doing the same thing! Do your research as you make your plans so you know what are peak days or times and find out what other options are available. With your research, you might also discover a new place that’s also as great, but not as popular as others. If you’re arranging lunch or dinner, do check as well if the restaurant accepts reservations or ask about their process for accepting walk-ins so you can secure your spot and avoid the long wait.
Get your priorities straight
With everyone trying to get things done and wanting to celebrate, it’s unavoidable to have conflicting schedules during this time. Your company Christmas Party, for example, might fall on the same night as a reunion with your childhood friends or your child’s Christmas program. If going to both events would be impossible considering timing, distance, and traffic, then be ready to make the call. This becomes easier though when you know what’s more important to you.
Be prepared for the unexpected
Ever been stranded in an airport or stuck in 5-hours of traffic going to a place that’s only 10km away? Thinking about it alone is already stressful! But it doesn’t have to be if you’re prepared. So go ahead and pack an extra set of clothes, more food, medicines, your power bank, and also make sure your car has enough gas and is in good shape. You’ll never really know what to expect, so be prepared! Oh, bring a little extra patience too! ☺
Set your pace
Kids can easily get tired from long walks and jam-packed schedules. During a Christmas gathering or in the middle of your supposedly relaxing holiday trip, you wouldn’t want to have to deal tantrums or miss the fun because you’re sick. It is very important to set your pace for both you and your kids. Make sure there is enough time for sleep and rest in your holiday agenda. Also consider that not all events or places you bring your children to will be fun for them, so strike a balance by also including the toy store, the playground or the ice cream shop in your itinerary.
Let go and have fun!
Lastly, don’t be too caught up with ticking off everything on your list. No matter how much you plan and prepare, things can still go wrong. So sometimes, you just have to let go and laugh it off, when we end up eating in a not-at-all-fancy-nor-special restaurant for Christmas Eve or even miss our flight. Christmas is all about love, relationships and being together. So make the most of it and have fun, whatever situation you find yourself in.