The light in a child’s eyes is all it takes to make Christmas a magical time of year.

The holidays are a festive time of year. For parents, however, it can be a stressful time of year.

There are presents to be bought, family and friends to visit, and money to be spent. Let’s not forget the cooking, cleaning, and every other additional task that is expected when the holidays arrive.

The holiday season can bring added stress to everyone who is trying to balance normal life with other responsibilities and expectations of Christmas.

However, there are ways to alleviate the added stress that can be a part of the holidays.

Have a plan for holiday events and outings

A bored kid is a whiny kid. This means that it is vitally important to have some sort of plan for the holidays. Have fun activities planned to keep them busy and entertained. Remember to pack snacks and drinks if you are going out. While fast food is an easy option, it is not always available and it’s not exactly healthy!

Relax Expectations

Let go of the expectation that Thanksgiving and Christmas will be perfect or go according to plan. It is hard enough to have relatives who expect your children to be perfect angels while they wait for food or stand in a line. If you are relaxed about circumstances, then others around you will be more wiling to let help out and let children be children. Enjoy the holidays but don’t plan for everything to go according to plan.

Get rid of the rules

Have a bedtime routine? We do! I usually relax the rules a bit around Thanksgiving and Christmas. I especially do this when we are traveling, around other people, or when we have an event to participate in. Kids don’t exactly work with your schedule, even if they know about it in advance.

If you and the little ones are having a good time, relax. It’s okay to ignore the regular schedule of everyday life around the holidays. When January roles around, you can work on getting your family back into your routine.

We are planning a joy-filled and stress-less holiday season this year! Comment below and let me know what tricks you have up your sleeve for getting through the holidays with your kids! I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Want to keep reading? Check out these other articles on the same topic:

Christmas Doesn’t Have to be Perfect

How to Make the Most of Christmas With Low Funds

Sometimes Christmas Isn’t Cheerful

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a guide to surviving Christmas with children