Christmas will be here before you know it. On Saturday, we put up the Christmas tree and set out all of the Christmas decorations around the house. Decorating the house always gets me into the Christmas spirit. Due to my health issues, I don’t like waiting until the last minute to get ready for holiday guests. With rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia, I have learned that you can’t predict flares. Plus, you can’t predict when guests are going to stop by to drop off goodies or gifts.
In April, I discovered Walmart’s Grocery pick-up and I’ve been using frequently to help free up my time to do other things like wrapping gifts, picking the kids up from school, going to doctor appointments or the ability to spend more time with my family in the evenings. So it only made sense to save time and add my holiday essentials to my grocery order. If you don’t want to use Walmart’s Grocery pick-up, you can even order your holiday essentials from your computer or smartphone and have them delivered right to your door with free Walmart’s two-day shipping option with orders over $35.00.
Even without chronic health problems, the holidays can be a stressful time of year. Today, I wanted to share some tips on how to stay ahead of holiday stress.
Keep the Decorations Simple
Each year, I am always excited to pull the Christmas decorations out of storage and want to have fun decorating the house with my kids. This is the first year that I looked at our box of ornaments and thought that they looked a bit thin. For a moment, I wanted to run to the store to buy some new decorations for the house. Then it dawned on me that there isn’t anything wrong with simple.
Don’t get me started on those inflatable yard decorations. Those things weren’t around when I was growing up and I think they look tacky especially during the day when they look like a puddle of fabric and cords strung across the yard.
Instead, of thinking about all the ornaments, lights, or outdoor decorations that you don’t have. Try working with what you already own or can make yourself without spending a ton of money.
Make a List
When I get stressed out or in severe pain, I tend to forget things that I need to do. Make a list of things that you need to accomplish it by. This will help keep you organized and you can easily see what you need to finish.
Keep the Clutter at Bay
Clutter seems to accumulate rather quickly in our house. When I don’t clean up the clutter, in a few days it can start to get overwhelming. Clutter harbors dust and it makes your home look messy. Take a few minutes at the end of the day to declutter. Keeping the clutter at bay will make your house look tidier if unexpected holiday guests stop by.
Have Realistic Expectations
Remember to keep your expectations realistic about what you want for this holiday season. It is so easy to get caught up in the idea that you need to do more. In reality, you shouldn’t be ashamed if you can’t do as much as you did in previous years or think that things need to be perfect. Instead, focus on enjoying the holidays with your family and friends.
Lose the “More, More Mentality”
All of the shiny glam and ads with stuff marked down tend to feed the “more mentality”. The best way to avoid getting caught up in this mentality, we suggest that you set a strict budget and stick to it. Use a list to help keep track of your spending. Also, you don’t have to buy everyone a gift either. Do what you can and don’t stress about it.
Ask for Help
If you are feeling overwhelmed, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Asking for help isn’t one of my strongest attributes but there is no reason why I should stress myself out. Instead, of stressing out, I could easily ask my husband, kids, or friends to help me with tasks that I need to complete.
It is up to you to reach out and ask for the help you need. People aren’t mind-readers and don’t always sense when you are stressed out.
Order Groceries and Household Essentials from Walmart.com
Asking for help was one of the reasons why I started using Walmart’s grocery pick-up in April. With my husband working, grocery shopping usually rests on my shoulders. This weekend when I placed my weekly order for groceries, I added my household essentials to my order. I picked up plenty of toilet paper, paper towels, and festive boxes of Kleenex.
As I mentioned earlier about creating holiday decor, you can easily dress up toilet paper rolls to give them a festive touch and use the cute holiday Kleenex boxes as decorations too.
Take Time for Self-Care
The busyness along with your regular obligations can be extremely taxing on your health. It is important to take time out to pamper yourself and relax. Self-care doesn’t have to cost a fortune and there are plenty of ways to pamper yourself without even spending money.
With the holiday’s in full swing, it is very easy to stray from your healthy eating habits. It is important to maintain your healthy eating habits in order to avoid holiday weight gain. Even though you can’t always control what is served at holiday parties it is still possible to get through the holidays without gaining weight if you practice mindful eating habits.
Get Your Exercise
Working out can help give you a burst of energy that you need to get through the holiday season. Regular exercise will help relieve stress and offset the added calories that you are likely consuming.
Say NO When Appropriate
Remember that you don’t have to say “yes” to everything; instead, you should prioritize the tasks that are important to you. You shouldn’t feel guilty for saying “no” to events or tasks that you don’t have time for.
There is no reason that you should stay up until the wee hours of the morning in order to get those cookies for Johnny’s class done or attending every single party that you are invited too.
Don’t forget to add your events to your calendar, there is nothing worse than accidentally over scheduling yourself too.
Keep Snacks and Drinks Available to Serve
During the holidays, you should always be prepared to have unexpected guests dropping by to visit or give you a gift. We love to keep a few snacks and drinks in the pantry to serve our guests. It doesn’t have to be anything fancy but it is a nice gesture to have something to offer your guests.
Bonus: Stretch Your Budget with Coupons and Ibotta
As an adult, I always look for ways to save money on things that I plan on buying. Saving money helps stretch my Christmas budget. I always check for coupons and use Ibotta to save money. Ibotta is an app that you download from Itunes or Google Play. You simply search for deals from your favorite store and then click on the item to add it to your list to redeem the rebate.
Once you have selected all of the deals, you have to scan your receipt to confirm that you purchased the products. After the products have been verified, it is added to your Ibotta balance and once you reach $20.00 you can withdraw the cash or buy gift cards.
Cash in on these holiday essential savings on Ibotta:
Ever since I was little, I always enjoyed the anticipation of decorating the house for Christmas and counting down the days until Christmas morning. I want my kids to feel that same excitement that I did as a child. I also want to teach my kids that the holidays don’t have to be stressful either. We also want to help you and your family keep the stress away too.