Ho Ho Holidays are here!

Thanksgiving has passed and the shopping season is in full swing. The Ho Ho Holidays are here! Ready or not, they are here. At my house we are getting ready for our family traditions.

Our traditions have changed over the years. My favorite thing to do is to put the ornaments on my tree. As I pull each ornament out it brings back a memory. It’s like reading your history book each year. At times the kids wanted to help and other times they didn’t. But now I make them help me even if it’s just a little bit.

Picking a favorite ornament isn’t easy either. There’s one that a second mom to my husband made for us using our wedding napkins. The ornament from Disney World is always fun, I loved taking my kids to Disney. Then there’s the Wooden ornament that’s a lobster that has claws that move when you pull the string. Of course the ornaments that are homemade by my kids or my sister, even myself. Of course I could go on, but you get the idea.

Putting on holiday music while sitting in front of a fire with some Hot Chocolate is always a treat. A great way to relax at the end of a long day of shopping.

Wrapping is a fun thing to do too. Although not my favorite, seeing everything wrapped and under the tree is a great feeling of accomplishment.

Watching everyone open on Christmas morning is fun too. And I must say I like seeing what I got too.
It always amazes me how busy the season is and how much people put into it. Driving around and seeing all the house is another tradition. There are so many homes that are beautiful. It’s a great way to enjoy the evening with family. Sometimes I get the kids to go with me too.

And I can’t leave out holiday fun with friends. I love getting together with friends over the holidays. Sometimes it’s the only time we see each other throughout the year. In fact, one friend and I are going to make a resolution to see each other sometime outside of November December.

Raising Responsible Adults

Kids don’t come with a manual to help us in raising responsible adults. Even if they, each child is different in many ways. I have two kids and they have completely different personalities. They know that I love them both the same amount even though I treat them different.  That’s because they are both different and they know we each have our own special relationship.

One thing I have always done is take each child’s personality and look at what they are good at and what they like to do, then encourage them to go with what’s in your heart.

An example of how they are different and how we work things out is what we do when it comes to meals, one hates cooking and the other likes it. The one that hates to cook would rather clean all the pots and pans from dinner. So that’s what we do.

I’ve tried to pinpoint what it is that I did to raise two responsible children. Responsible doesn’t look the same in either of them. One is very driven, does well in school, activities and really spends lots of time bettering himself. My other child isn’t as driven but still responsible and always comes through when he has to do something and does it with a smile (well, most of the time). They know what their responsibilities are around the house and even if I have to remind them they will do it.

A big thing I can attribute to this is teaching them morals and honesty. I want them to be themselves but know I’m always here for them. I give them trust and they continue to earn it. I’m aware that can change at any moment, but will trust them until they prove me otherwise.

I love them and let them know that love looks different in each person. I respect their privacy as long as they don’t take advantage of my respect. At times I’ve needed to talk to them about what’s important in the world. I’ve let them know that no matter what they did I would always love them. I may not like them or what they’ve done at times, but I will always love them.

They have always been first for me. As I’ve laid down house rules and responsibilities, which are subject to change, and stay consistent. When I talk to them about a consequence for their actions I always make sure I can follow through. I’ve supported them when they needed help in school, with friendships and even bullying. Good times and bad times I’ve always been there.

When I am away or working or whatever, I can trust them to be at home by themselves. They know I trust them and don’t want to lose that so they follow the rules and don’t take advantage. One of my kids even asked me if his prescription was ready and when I said yes he went to pick it up himself.

Of course they fought just like other siblings do over the years, but now they have matured and are more thoughtful of each other. They still disagree and debate, but overall they do get along. They respect each other and me. We all respect each other.

The most important thing your kids need to know is that no matter what, you love them and you are there for them, follow through with what you say and teach them good morals.

Thanksgiving? People are Stressing

 

Thanksgiving is just 2 days away. Thanksgiving? People are stressing as they begin to cook, clean, grocery shop, setting tables and preparing for guests of different numbers. That also means for some that Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday are just around the corner.

I don’t know which involves more work. There is a fair amount of work for either. Some people are stressing out a lot while others love it.

Those that go shopping must scope out the Black Friday Deals and get the shopping planned out so you don’t miss out on anything. I mentioned Shopkick recently and they come up with specials too and places where you can get kicks. If you know what you want and where you want to shop, there’s nothing like looking in the paper or online at the stores you like to shop at. Get your list and check it twice.

But now I am encouraging everyone to stop for a minute and be thankful for what you have. Enjoy the spirit of the day. Do what you can in advance, but remember to take a short break here and there to keep your stress level low.

My son and I were discussing the value of a 20 minute nap. A refreshing nap even if you don’t fall asleep let’s your mind settle and clear so you can finish preparing and get ready to enjoy a stressful day with what I hope is a little less stress.

Something else I do is listen to music. Depending on how I’m feeling and what mood I’m in depends on what music I choose. If I’m stressed I put on soft soothing music. If I’m feeling productive I put on happy feel good music. (wow, I sound so cliché)

Add a cup of tea too. Pick what works for you and use it to keep your stress level down. Getting so wrapped up in the preparations can take away from the fun. On that note, good luck and Happy Thanksgiving.

Take a Leap Back in Time

Ghosts and goblins are going to take a leap back in time this Halloween. With Daylight Savings Time, this year they have an extra hour to scare us. At the witching hour of 2:00am on clock fall back picSaturday night (Sunday morning) we turn back the clocks back one hour. You got it, it’s fall back with Daylight Savings Time.

HELPFUL HINTS

Many of our electronic gadgets change automatically. You should consider using your phone to look at to make sure you aren’t to early for an appointment.
Fire Departments around the country suggest changing the batteries in your smoke detectors, carbon dioxide detectors and make sure they are working properly. A clock and fire alarmsuggestion worth acting on. So with the lost hour you can take some extra time out so you can stay safe. Lose time but take time. sounds like an oxymoron, but it’s really important to keep them in working order. Once my son and I were in the family room and we noticed an odd oder. We couldn’t place it. We finally called 911. One Fire Truck, One Ambulance and one Police car later, it turned out to be a defective wire on my gas stove. I’m grateful we weren’t sleeping. We could have died. While they were there, they checked my current smoke detectors, replaced batteries and even replaced one of the detectors that wasn’t working anymore.  They also suggested that I get an electrician to hardwire smoke detectors through out the house.

November is just 2 days away ….. Uhhhh, did I say November? Not only is summer gone and fall is leaving, we are losing an hour just as the temperatures are dropping. The sweet smell of winter and snow days. For years I’ve wondered why we change the time back. It’s because it’s so dark in the morning. Who wants there kids standing at the bus stop in the dark. True or not, that makes sense to me.

Get out your snow gear and get ready for the holidays. It’s all right around the corner. black friday saleHave you seen? some stores are closing on Thanksgiving and a select few are closing on
Black Friday. Good for them, thinking about the employees. I will miss them when I go on my traditional Black Friday shopping trip. Flyers are coming out soon for those of you that go. Stores start to leak the specials and that’s a good time to start mapping out your Black Friday shopping trip.