The holidays usually go one of two ways in my house, really well with a few meltdowns from the children, and myself if I’m being honest. Or they can go the complete opposite. Getting through the holidays with young children can be a struggle, don’t fret momma we’ve all been there. So today I am sharing a few tips me and my husband have learned over the years to make things go smoother and keep smiles on as many faces as possible. I mean, let’s be honest, at least someone will have an attitude, it never fails.
Getting Through Holiday Shopping with Young Children
Shopping with my kids became more of a chore than anything as I feared how they would act while in the store. Will they have a fit? Will they get tired before I am done getting everything? On a scale of 1 to 10 how bad do I want to deal with a cranky three year old? These are just some of the questions I used to ask myself and then just like that everything changed. While watching random Youtube videos one day ( I have no idea how I came across this video either) I stumbled onto a video of a mom going over her tips for shopping with small kids. Of course she mentioned the normal things:
- Let them help you – easier said then done when your two year old likes to run and hide under the clothes racks
- Make shopping into a game – sure why not? I mean I don’t care if everyone in the store is staring at me like I’ve lost my mind when my children decided to run through the aisle.
But then she mentioned something I had never thought of. Rotate between taking the kids shopping and just taking the kids to different stores. Now I understand you may not have a whole lot of time to just randomly go to Ralphs one Tuesday afternoon, but when you do take the kids. Go to Hobby Lobby and look at random things you’ll probably want really bad but never actually buy. Explain to your kids how to act in these situations when there isn’t any pressure. Then when the holidays come and Wal-Mart is jammed packed with only two cashiers your kids already know what you expect out of them. This is life-changing momma, I promise you.
Traveling During the Holidays with Young Children
To travel or not to travel? That is the question. Well, for me anyway. Since we moved to California traveling with young children for the holidays have taken on a whole new kind of ugly. Just the logistics alone can be a nightmare. I mean, how exactly do I expect to get from the airport to my hotel in with four carseats? Can you even rent a minivan? Insert Uber, or Lyft, whichever you prefer. It’s not the “olden” days. Traveling with your kids isn’t hard. Can it be stressful when your three year old throws a tantrum because they want to sit next to a complete stranger on the plane? Yes, but hard not so much.
Rule number 1: Plan. Figure out the best method of travel for your family. Would it be easier or more convenient to travel via car and make a road trip out of it? Or is it way too far and flying is the only option? If flying is the only option look into early morning or late evening flights so your kids can sleep. Map out seating so there is a two to one ratio, if needed. Two kids to every one parent, preferably with the parent in the middle.
2. Pack in advance. I always forget something so I like to pack a few days early so I have time to remember what I forgot (seriously, all of a sudden two days before the trip Ill remember I forgot to pack the kids toothbrushes).
3. Get mentally prepared. Remember your children are tiny humans with feelings and opinions and all that stuff that we as parents like to sometimes forget. Prepare for the meltdowns, the annoying whining and the ever so awkwardly placed comments about those around them. Its going to happen, no matter how much talking you do. So prepare and roll with it. It’ll make things easier for everyone.
Next up, Arriving at the In-Laws with your children during the holidays
Here it is, the absolute worse part of the holidays. Being with family, well more specifically your in-laws. Unfortunately my in-laws and I have the best relationship ever, so I don’t really know much about it, LOL. Yet, I do know about taking my children around family they haven’t seen in a long time. Am I the only mother who hates when relatives get upset when my children don’t remember them? It’s like come on, they haven’t seen you in 365 days (or longer) and you want them to remember your name? I cant even remember the name of the cashier that rung me out at CVS 2 minutes before I got here.
So what do you do in those situation? Well, for me I tell the adult to get over it, in the nicest way possible. Because what you are not about to do it project your insecurities and negativity on my five year old. But I digress. Basically I recommend having a very nonchalant attitude to any family member when it comes to your kids. Say whatever you want about my kids, your opinion doesn’t bother me. Really, this mindset saves lives. Those whom you would want to kill if you took the time to care about their opinions. Hope that gave you a laugh.
So these are just a few of my tips/tricks on how I get through the holidays with a football team of children. One last recommendation, remember what its like to be a kid and try and let your children enjoy the holidays. The holidays are a time to spend together. Making new memories that will last a lifetime, everything isn’t important.
Do you have any tips on surviving the holidays with young children? Did you find this helpful, or at least a little funny? Let me know in the comment below.