Sometimes we get so busy with all the preparation and bustle of Christmas we forget our Ho Ho Ho! It’s more like Ho Ho Hum! Or even worse… Bah Humbug! Christmas can be a stressful time and that’s such a shame! Today is Practically Speaking and I’m sharing 10 ways to put a little jingle back into your step and Christmas joy in your heart! Even if you are the happiest of Christmas elves these ideas will help you celebrate this special season!
LISTEN TO CHRISTMAS MUSIC
Listen to your favorite Christmas music! When I ‘m cleaning or decorating a room or a tree I like to listen to peppy, fun Christmas music. When I cook I listen to Michael Buble or Christmas standards and when I’m working and need to concentrate without a whole lot of foot tapping I listen to my Pandora station: Peaceful Christmas Music!
Christmas music is such a special treat and most of us only listen to it this time of year! Get in as much Christmas music listening as you can! It’s a real mood lifter!
FILL YOUR HOME WITH THE SCENTS OF CHRISTMAS
Oh, joy!!!! Aromas create and trigger strong memories. Fill your home with scents of peppermint, cinnamon and cloves, evergreen, vanilla and other delicious Christmas scents.
My favorite way to do this is diffusing essential oils. If you are an “oily” girl or guy you might like my favorite Christmas combination from Young Living. Mix 6 drops of Thieves, 3 cinnamon, 2 cloves, and 2 orange or tangerine. Shameless pitch: I am a young living consultant. Use my member number to order 3098375.
You can also see my original recipe for CHRISTMAS IS IN THE AIR SIMMERING POTPOURRI. I’ve been simmering this during Christmas for decades. My son says, “Mom this smells like Christmas”!
There are also so many beautifully scented candles that can create a luscious Christmas scent in your home!
CUT DOWN YOUR TO-DO LIST
Okay, just do it!!!! If you are like me, you tend to keep piling those chores, parties, responsibilities, etc on! Don’t do it! The object of getting to Christmas day is to have a prepared heart not a prepared everything else in the universe! That leaves our spiritual and emotional tanks empty and our bodies exhausted with hot glued fingertips, glitter in our hair and bags under our eyes!
I took a serious look at all I did a few years back and cut it down!!!! Did I really need to make 15 different kinds of Christmas cookies? NO! So if I make them I only make a few of our very favorites. This is so so freeing!
Do I really need three Christmas trees decking the halls at StoneGable? It’s much better to have one that is carefully and joyfully decorated! Please hear me… Do what is important to you and your family. That’s it! You will be so much happier and your family will love you for it too!
Christmas can be Christmas without all the extras. Charlie Brown was right!
ASK FOR HELP
This is huge! My grandmother lived with her mother-in-law, my great aunt lived down the street and Nani’s next door neighbors felt like family. They worked together! “Many hands make light work”. The old adage is true!
If you love cookie baking barter to do it for a Christmas chore you don’t like as much! If you are a decorating elf but cleaning/organizing is just not your gift let it be known that you are ready to trade jobs!
Because of my busy job I have help. My friend also works for me and will help me put away my Christmas decorations this year. I can’t even begin to tell you the giant Christmas tree size weight that will be lifted off of me! I have to move right into January’s blogging schedule and won’t have time to dedecorate… except for 1:00 AM to 3:00 AM the week right after New Year. And that is already scheduled for much needed sleep!
Delegate. You should not do all the Christmas work. If another person lives in your home share the work and enjoy the fun… together!
Do things that make your life and the Christmas season easier and more enjoyable! Ask for help… do it!
DECORATE SOMETHING FOR 10 MINUTES
Decorating our homes at Christmastime can be daunting! How fun would it be to pour yourself into a Christmas decoration that only took 10 minutes to do? Most of us can find 10 minutes in our day to make something beautiful. And making an effort to only concentrate on that one thing for 10 minutes will give our minds a much needed time-out. I have lots of 10 minute Christmas decorating ideas for you
READ THE TRUE CHRISTMAS STORY
If you are not feeling very Christmassy, give yourself a break! It’s okay. To tell you the truth, how we celebrate Christmas is a far cry from the real-deal first Christmas! If you want to really get the true meaning of Christmas read about it in the Bible… Luke 2:1-20. Or read about it HERE.
Even if you are the jolliest of Christmas lover or the grumpiest Grinch you should make time to read the true Christmas story!
You can also read a about the real Christmas story with pictures from my studies in Israel HERE.
READ A CHRISTMAS BOOK… PREFERABLY A CHILD’S CHRISTMAS BOOK
Take time to read a few Christmas books! I love THE POLAR EXPRESS, HOW THE GRICH STOLE CHRISTMAS, THE CHRISTMAS WISH, THE LITTLEST ANGEL ( I cry buckets every time I read it) and THE SNOWMAN. Look at Christmas through the eyes of a child!
WATCH A CHRISTMAS MOVIE
We love the old classics, here at StoneGable. When our kids were tiny we would go to the video store (yes, there was a place that actually sold and rented movies) and we would get “the classics”. Exposing our children to a bevy of great old Christmas movies gave them such an appreciation for wonderful cinema!
Most of these movies were way before my time. I love the old classics!
Some of our favorites were: IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE, HOLIDAY INN, MIRACLE ON 34TH STREET, A CHRISTMAS CAROL, CHRISTMAS IN CONNECTICUT, THE BISHOP’S WIFE, WHITE CHRISTMAS. AN AFFAIR TO REMEMBER… and more current movies like ELF, SCROOGED, HOME ALONE, THE SANTA CLAUSE, LOVE ACTUALLY, THE POLAR EXPRESS, THE GRINCH WHO STONE CHRISTMAS, THE HOLIDAY, ERNEST SAVES CHRISTMAS, THE CHRISTMAS STORY, THE NATIVITY, and PRANCER. If I left out your favorite Christmas movie make sure to remind all of us in the comments!
TAKE A CHRISTMAS LIGHTS DRIVE
This is a big favorite of mine! Last night on the way home from a family birthday dinner Bobby and I were making a mental note of what homes we want to vsit on our “Christmas lights” tour. The good, the bad and the oh,-what-were-you-thinking! I must admit I LOVE a train wreck of a display as much as I love a one-of-a-kind Christmas beauty!
There is something magical about Christmas lights! Make sure to turn on the Christmas tunes and take a thermos or traveler of hot chocolate and maybe a cookie or two!
Make it a family event!
PAINT YOUR NAIL RED
Get a manicure and paint your nails Christmas red! Enough said!
GO FOR A WALK
Don’t forget to exercise during the holidays. We tend to drop our exercise routines when we get busy. But exercise will help your mental outlook and we will feel better too! I swim and it’s such good medicine!
Opps! I think that was 11 ways to get into the Christmas spirit! Here are a few other things that might put a little jingle bell in your step!
- stay away from the mall (Only go to see Santa. The rest can be life-sucking at Christmas!)
- order online
- visit local shops
- buy a small real evergreen tree (If you have a big artificial tree get a small tree or at least a bunch of real greens right before Christmas)
- send Christmas cards
- drink hot chocolate ( Here’s an easy slow cooker peppermint hot chocolate I love)
- give to your favorite charity
- go to church
- find out what local events are happening in your area and go
- wrap gifts as you get them
- eat lots of cookies (and make sure you follow the last tip- get those walking shoes on!)
- go to lunch/breakfast/dinner with friends and exchange gifts
- hang a wreath on your front door
Here’s hoping you have the merriest Christmas ever!
Here are my favorite Christmas movies, books, and music!
For Your’s Video Library!
Great Christmas Reads
MICHAEL BUBLE´ CHRISTMAS || CELTIC WOMEN HOME FOR CHRISTMAS || MICHAEL W SMITH PRESENTS THE STRINGS OF CHRISTMAS || CHRISTMAS AT THE BROOKLYN TABERNACLE || ANDRE BOCELLI MY CHRISTMAS || THE PIANO GUYS A FAMILY CHRISTMAS || IL DIVO THE CHRISTMAS COLLECTION || JACKIE EVANCHO SOMEDAY AT CHRISTMAS ||
How do you get in the Christmas spirit! Please share!
Did you know that I have over 1,300 pins on my Christmas board? You might like to follow me on Pinterest and see all the holiday inspiration HERE.
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