It’s the most wonderful time of the year! I LOVE Christmas! I have ever since I was a little girl. When the first Coca-Cola polar bear commercial would air, I would immediately get starry eyed with the anticipation of the coming Christmas season. Not much has changed, I still feel this way at the beginning of the season. One of my very favorite nights is decorating the Christmas tree with my boys (pictures below). I turn on Christmas music and light a Frasier Fir candle, just like my mom did when she would decorate for Christmas!
But why is that feeling only at the beginning of the Christmas season? Just this week, my list started to fill up, and I could feel the joy of the season slipping away. I could feel that tightness in my chest and my brow start to furrow. How will I get all of this done?!?? Noooooo, wait…. it’s already happening! That beginning of Christmas feeling is already slipping away! How can I do Christmas without getting totally stressed out? Stress kills the joy of Christmas! This got me thinking, and…
…Here are my ideas on how I’ll try to avoid being a stressed out mess this Christmas:
– 80% is good! No one is asking me for 100%, so why am I making myself mad (literally) trying to achieve 100%?!? If I don’t spend hours searching for the perfect Christmas card (yes, I usually search for hours), it’s going to be fine!
– I’m going to try to remember my priorities and say no to the small things, which in the end, is saying yes to my family and frankly, my sanity.
– I’m going to try to change my perspective. This is a season of giving and serving others. And yes, sometimes that is sacrificial and hard, but isn’t that refreshing? Sometimes I just need to get over myself and my wants. (Btw, this is only possible because I don’t have a child under 5. With a child under 5, every minute of every day is sacrificial.)
– In the same breath, I’m going to try to guard myself against burnout. This could look like a number of different things, from exercise to getting things done early. (Oh, please let me have presents wrapped before Christmas Eve! Ok, I know this will NOT happen. I just need to give up that dream right now. Ha!)
The last two came from an email my friend Courtney sent:
– Lower expectations, increase tolerance. Oh man, I need this tattooed on my forehead. Remember how disappointed I was when our Easter didn’t look like the Pottery Barn catalog? I fall for those idealic scenes everytime!
– Focus on what’s really important this season- Jesus! Courtney recommended this Advent devotional that will be delivered to your inbox during Advent. Refocusing on what really matters will surely help de-stress.
Now, let’s see if these ideas will help keep me sane this year. Just tonight, I had to make a late night run to Target for a new Elf, and honestly, in that moment, I forgot everything I wrote above! Ha!
I shared my Whoville Inspired Christmas Tree on Instastories and received lots of source questions, so I thought I’d share it here on the blog!
Here’s my Whoville Inspired Christmas Tree:
I love how all my boy’s ornaments are always on the bottom half of the tree. I will miss it when they’re tall enough to spread them around.
Tree (fake)- Balsam Hill (I don’t recommend Balsam Hill.), Tree Skirt- Nativa, Felt Ball Garland- Land of Nod, Pink and Purple Ball Ornaments- Target, Snow Flake Ornaments- Old (were my mom’s), Colorful Ornament Ball Garland, Navy and White Striped Ribbon, Green and Blue with Gold Stripe Ornament, Rainbow Ornament and Tree Topper- all found at the Paul Michael Company booth at the Nutcracker Market in Houston
I bought a new (fake) wreath this year. My sister found the perfect bow to punch it up!
Wreath (fake), Topiary (fake), and Bow- all found at the Paul Michael Company booth at the Nutcracker Market in Houston
My Favorite Night of the Year:
Courtney Wells says
I’m still obsessed with your colorful wall art. I followed the artist on Instagram (hoping to snag something similar) but he hasn’t posted in forever. Any links to where I cup I’d buy his art! I love colorful and 3 dime signal art!
Your tree is so happy, I love it!
Carly Lee says
Hi Courtney! I purchased the piece of art through my friend, Kate Bellin. I bet she could help you! http://www.katebellin.com HTH!
Were you able to find it? I love it too!!
Your tree is gorgeous!! Love the sweet pictures of the boys decorating! I, too, struggle with burnout. I think setting the right atmosphere is important for keeping ones sanity. I need to get the candle (our tree is fake too) and play more Christmas songs. Thanks, as always, for keeping it real!
Hi, how many strands of the Land of Nod felt balls did it take to cover your tree?
Looove your tree- it’s so festive and happy! Weird question- what is your rug and is it soft?
Thank you so very much for that comment about little ones under 5. That was a refreshing and lifegiving thing to read as I am entertaining my 4 year old in carpool line waiting for my 5 year old….aaaand it took me 5 minutes to type this because he was trying to shoot the phone with his cap gun the whole time😂😂😳
Carly Lee says
The HARDEST years of my life. Hang in there! I can finally talk on the phone again!
Amen! I started thinking about this right before Thanksgiving, when we had pictures with Santa at an event and I was scrambling to get two cute, coordinating, monogrammed (!) outfits in time. This is the year I get things done early and remember to enjoy the small family moments! 🙂 I think it’s easy to get crazy because it’s the moms who typically are responsible for making the magic happen, with all that entails. Christmas is my favorite time of year and my mom is a large reason why I feel that way. She made it magical, and I want the same for my kids. But the first Christmas was humble and the most magical of all. I’ve saved the Advent devotional to my podcast favorites and look forward to getting caught up today. Thank you for being real and for the solid tips!
Carly Lee says
Yes! You bring up so many good points!!!! Thank you, Sarah!
Love your tree and how well it matches the artwork over the chest.
Carly Lee says
Hi Jeanie! I hope you’re doing great! Thank you!
Where did you get the ornaments and garland so cute!