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Challenge: Reducing Holiday Stress

Scary Mommy's Tips for Surviving the Holidays

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Ahhh, the holidays: a time of joy, celebration, serenity, and peace... Unless, of course, you have children. In that case, it's all about survival. Here's how you can make it through the season (relatively) unscathed.

1. Laugh about the disasters all season long because there WILL be disasters and you can either laugh over them or cry. Laughing is much more fun. Wine also helps.

2. Don't try and keep up with the over the top Pinterest Mom... but do befriend her. Embracing your imperfect life is much more pleasant while munching on delicious cookies somebody else slaved over.

3. Have Santa bring one awesome gift, and have the rest be from Mom and Dad. Why should some made up guy get all the credit when we do all the work?

4. Don't know what their wish list? Go for the gift cards. They're what everyone really wants and can be purchased in bulk during one quick trip to the grocery store. Save yourself the angsting and make everyone happy at once.

5. Stock up on AA and AAA batteries. Nothing ruins Christmas like the toy they dreamed of... which won't turn on.

6. Keep a list of the gifts you get from childless friends and family so that when they have kids, you can give them presents that are just as loud and unsafe and obnoxious as the ones they gave you.

7. Bombarded with gifts for the kids? Sock some away for sick days or snow days. You know they're coming.

8. Have fun with Elf on the Shelf, or skip the whole thing altogether. Do you really want to be stressing over a devious stuffed elf?

9. Wrap larger gifts in plain paper, and let the kids go to town on it. They'll be distracted for at least a half hour and your relatives will go gaga over your creativity.

10. Don't bother buying babies presents; just give them a few boxes and wooden spoons and they'll be just as happy. You'll make up for it in a few years, so save your money while you can.

11. Have your kids write a letter to Santa with all of the gifts they would like, and then email off a copy to close relatives. They're going to hound you for ideas, might as well take the preemptive strike.

12.You know that junk box you've been throwing all of your kid's art into for the last year? Hello, Insta-Christmas presents for loved ones. Add a personalized line and voila!

13. If you really feel the need to have the perfectly presented present, the wrapping people at the mall do a great job... and you can have your gifts wrapped while you enjoy a nice cup of coffee.

14. Eight nights of Hanukkah can make for some seriously entitled kids. Break up the toy monotony with pajama night – complete with breakfast for dinner, book night, arts and craft night etc.

15. Enjoy the season; it really is a special time. Again, wine helps.


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