How to Survive the Holidays (and maybe have some fun, too!)
1) Take a break. You are not required to attend every holiday party or community activity to which you receive an invitation. Rest and quiet time at home will help you be more flexible in stressful situations.
2) Have an ally. Talk with your partner, a close friend or trusted family member about how you are doing and any concerns you may have regarding schedules, difficult relationships or troubling behaviors by your children. Using your support network will help you manage difficult situations more easily than trying to do it on your own. Provide support to your children and teens during this busy time of year. Be sure to carve out quiet time with them during the holiday season.
3) Stick with the household rules. Children and teens should continue to complete their responsibilities and get to bed at a decent time, even if they are out of school. Keeping a schedule will help keep order during a traditionally busy time of year. This will also help decrease difficulties in returning to a normal routine after the holidays. And, yes, it is alright to give consequences to children and teens for not meeting their expectations during the holidays!
4) Be generous and express gratitude. The old stat4ement "it's the thought that counts" is really true! It is not necessary to go into debt to satisfy your child or teen's holiday wish list. Teach your children about generosity by volunteer or buying gifts for underprivileged children. This will help them be more appreciative of the gifts they do receive. Writing thank you notes with your children and teens will help foster feelings of gratitude.
5) Create or continue meaningful traditions. Bake cookies, go ice skating, decorate the family tree and watch holiday movies. These traditions are what children and teenagers will remember and treasure as they grow older.