For twelve simple Christmas missions and more simple Christmas encouragement and fun wrapped up with a pretty bow and delivered to your email inbox, sign up for my updates. (Okay, there is no bow.) For even more guidance and encouragement, buy my book.
One of the biggest “secrets” to a simple Christmas is planning to not over-plan. (It’s not really a secret, because I talk about it in my book; if it were a secret, like where I keep my chocolate stash, I would only tell a long-distance bestie. Long-distance because it’s chocolate, and if my bestie were close by and knew…well, chocolate, people. Moving on.)
Here’s how you plan to not over-plan.
Conscientiously schedule the weeks and even months leading up to Christmas as we discussed in our week one mission.
When you have inserted all your obligations and faves, insert blank days. That doesn’t mean you leave the day blank. It means you fill it with something like “Blank Day.” I hope you would be more creative, like “Regulating the Chocolate Stash Day” or “Replenishing Brain Cells Day” or “Staring Into Space Day” or “Intentionally Accomplish Nothing Day.”
Since it is the Christmas season, you could get a little more festive with your day naming. How about “Listening to Christmas Music Day” or “Savoring the Season Day.” Then, when you get invited to your thirteenth Christmas party of the season, you can honestly look at your calendar, see “Wearing Jingle Bell Socks and Going Nowhere Day” and say, “Oh, I’m sorry. I’m booked.”
In all seriousness…
Schedule days to do nothing. Those “nothing” days could actualy contain things like “Watch White Christmas” or “Make an Advent Calendar” or “Look at Christmas Lights With the Hubby.” Whatever your family most wants to do this Christmas should be on that calendar, with all the fun little “nothings” that make life so special written in on the blank days. That way, nothing worthwhile (the fun little nothings) will get bumped for, say, an eggnog party with your dog groomer’s neighbor’s manicurist’s bird.
Also in all seriousness…
When people call, conscientiously check your calendar and see if whatever they are asking you to do is worth sacrificing a blank day. It is on the blank days when the most family bonding takes place. After all, isn’t that why we’re simplifying Christmas—to focus on what matters most?
Do not sacrifice the blank days!
Are we on the same page here? Good.
By the way, I need your opinion. What are your thoughts on a “Running Through the Snow in Our Undies Day?” When people call and ask me to volunteer for this, that, and the other, I tell them I can’t because we’re obligated to run through the snow in our undies. They don’t call back. It’s far more effective than the Do Not Call List, although neither one works on politicians.
How do you keep from overbooking Christmas?
Thank you Dafne Cholet for the image. (Alterations mine)