The biggest holiday stress I have can be summed up in a single word: gifts. I have a ton of anxiety over picking the right gifts; getting all the shopping done in time; and of course wrapping the mountain of presents. I do all the shopping in our family. I do it for our immediate family. I do it for my extended family. And I do it for Mike's family. That's a whole lotta shopping. Mike gets off easy ... he shops for me and that's it. And if there are handmade gifts, they are made by my hands! Lots and lots of work I tell you (I say this in happiest way possible, since I prefer having control over the process, otherwise if Mike was solely responsible for the shopping, then everyone would end getting bacon flavored toothpaste)!
Last year I got our shopping done super early and it was such a huge relief, which is why I aimed to do the same this year. With as much as I work and travel, it's almost a necessity. It's also nice to be able to drive past the super crowded mall and know I don't have to fight the crowds. Just thinking about the crowds makes my head hurt.
Since I'm done shopping, my focus has turned to wrapping, each night I've been chipping away at the piles of gifts. I'm thrilled to report, I'm pretty much done with all my wrapping, which means on Christmas Eve we'll only have to put together Santa's goodies ... a huge task this year with a train table for Cooper and and a desk for Shelby.
The last few years, I haven't worried too much about how I wrapped the gifts from Santa. Shelby was too little to notice. That all changed last year. Last year she asked all sorts of questions ... "Why does Santa have the same wrapping paper as we do?" "Why does Santa make bows like you do Mama?" "Santa's handwriting looks a lot like yours Mom, why is that?" And on and on and on. This year I'm taking precautions. I ordered new wrapping paper and bows that Shelby has never seen and is hidden quite well. I ordered some printable tags, which I'm going to add Shelby's name to before I print them. And all the "Santa" gifts are being stored at Mike's office so there is no chance she'll see them before Christmas. I hope all this work throws her off the trail!
PICTURE THE HOLIDAYS with Tracy Clark and Paper Coterie: 31 days of seasonal photo prompts to inspire your creativity. Find out more here.