This post is sponsored by Chevrolet Traverse.
The holidays can be a stressful time of year. There are parties, presents and lots of pressure to make everything perfect. I like to try to make the holidays simple, but still meaningful for my family – it is the perfect time of year to minimize drama and maximize joy. Here are 3 Tips to Simplify the Holidays and keep stress to a minimum.
Focus on Family
It is so easy to get caught up in outside activities, like concerts and parties. Or to spend so much time making the house look perfect that you don’t have energy for anything else. But this is the time to reconnect with your family, and spend time with them. Make it a point to stay home some evenings and just spend time together, playing a game or talking, so you are not always on the go.
Keep Traditions Reasonable
Having family holiday traditions is great, but know when enough is enough. A few family traditions are fine, twenty things that must be done just so every year is not. Sometimes traditions can get more complicated as the year goes by, because you try to make each year better than the year before. Gingerbread house making starts out with a simple pre-made kit, and 15 years later has turned into a custom designed creation that takes days to make. That’s fine if it is still meaningful, but if you are just doing it because you always have maybe it is time to stop!
For my family buying a Christmas tree falls into this category. When the kids were little we always made a big event of going to a tree farm, selecting the perfect tree, cutting it down and hauling it home. But as the years went by the search for the tree got longer and longer, because it had to be just perfect. A few years ago we realized the kids didn’t even want to go, because they were cold, and it took too long to pick a tree! So we bought an artificial tree, it looks perfect every year, and no one misses our old tradition!
Simplify Gift Giving
Gifts are another thing that can get bigger every year and cause stress. You can be stressed about finding the perfect gift, or about how much money you want to spend. It is important to remember that you should give out of love, not out of obligation. Simple homemade gifts are a great way to show that you care. I like to make food gifts, because I enjoy cooking. But for someone else a scrapbook, jewelry or crocheting might be the best way to make a gift – do something that you enjoy so that the entire process is meaningful.
Here is one of the easy gifts I am making and giving this year – Cranberry Hootycreeks! These cookies are perfect for the holidays, because they are full of seasonal tart cranberries mixed with tasty white chocolate. It only takes a few minutes to layer all the ingredients in a jar and then attach a printable label. Check out the recipe below, and the printable labels.
- ⅝ c. flour
- ½ c. rolled oats
- ½ c. flour
- ½ t. baking soda
- ½ t. salt
- ⅓ c. brown sugar
- ⅓ c. white sugar
- ½ c. dried cranberries
- ½ c. white chocolate chips
- ½ c. chopped pecans
- Layer all the ingredients in the jar in the order given.
- Seal the jar and include a copy of the printable below with the gift.
The 2016 Chevrolet Traverse
Another thing that simplifies the holidays is knowing that you have a reliable family vehicle, like the 2016 Chevrolet Traverse. This SUV has room for the whole family on holiday trips, and available built in 4G LTE Wi-FiÂ®* so you can stay connected while on the go.
With spacious seating, ample cargo space and available safety and entertainment technologies, thereâ€™s no better vehicle to bring the family together than the Chevrolet Traverse.
* Requires compatible mobile device, active OnStar service and data plan. 4G LTE service available in select markets. Visit onstar.com for coverage map, details and system limitations.