Holiday Stress

I love this time of year, but there are stresses that come with the season. Here's an example:

Spending an hour at the post office with my 1 1/2 year old son. We went to mail my husband's best friend a Christmas care package to Afghanistan. After waiting in a long line, I finally get to the clerk only to discover that my box wasn't ready to ship. I still needed to buy tape to seal it, fill out the address label and some international form. So Will and I got out of line and completed the necessary steps, and by this point, he was running all over the post office. Then, we had to wait in line again to ship the thing. Needless to say, I was quite frazzled by the time we left the post office...an hour later!

We have already celebrated my husband's family Christmas. It was at our house last weekend, along with a graduation party for our niece and nephew, who graduated from Texas A&M. We had about 35 family members for the Christmas party and even more for the graduation party. It was a great success and we had a wonderful time!

My family Christmas is this coming weekend, again at our home. My mom, grandparents, two aunts and uncles, sister, brother-in-law and nephew will all be there. Can't wait to see everyone!

There's just three days left until Christmas and our 100 cards were mailed out a week ago, and I have finished all of my shopping! Now let the wrapping begin!

Hope your holidays are stress free. Don't sweat the small stuff and remember the reason for the season!

Merry Christmas to all you moms out there!

Here are some tips from the American Psychological Association to help parents deal with holiday stress:

Set expectations. Talk to your kids about expectations for gifts and holiday activities. Be open with them if money is an issue. Depending on a child's age, parents can use this as an opportunity to teach their kids about the value of money and responsible spending. And be realistic. Take small concrete steps to deal with holiday tasks instead of overwhelming yourself with goals that are too far reaching for a busy time.

Keep things in perspective. Try to consider stressful situations in a broader context and keep a long-term perspective. Avoid blowing events out of proportion. And teach your kids how to keep things in perspective, including what type of and the number of gifts they receive.

Make connections. Good relationships with family and friends are important. So, view the holidays as a time to reconnect with people. Additionally, accepting help and support from those who care about you can help alleviate stress. Even volunteering at a local charity with your kids is a good way to connect with others, assist someone in need and teach your kids about the value of helping others.

Take care of yourself. Pay attention to your own needs and feelings during the holiday season. Engage in activities that you and your family enjoy and find relaxing. Taking care of yourself helps keep your mind and body healthy and primed to deal with stressful situations. Consider cutting back television viewing for kids and instead, get the family out together. It promotes activity and takes kids away from sedentary time and possible influence from advertisements.

About the Author...
Crystal Galny
Crystal Galny anchors News 3 at Noon and hosts MomsEveryday.com. A true hometown girl, Crystal was born and raised in Bryan and graduated from Bryan High School.

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