Find Your Merry

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Tis’ the season to be jolly, fa la la la la…

Who hears those words on repeat in this holiday season and instantly mumbles, yea right la la la la blaaahhhh, as stress attacks your mind with your to do list that seems a mile long and instead of feeling the merriness of this season you feel anxiety in its place.

Shopping. Gift giving. Meal sharing. Party and fellowship. End of the year workload.

Your extrovert self does not know how to say no to all the together time and your introvert self is screaming out to receive energy from your alone time.

I get it, the holidays hold a different schedule and pace, some in a marathon sprint at times.  Your “best yes” becomes misplaced and saying no to things is hard pressed.

Pinterest Christmas has the expectations for home decor and family time activities in overdrive and a family suffers with not enough if it is not a go big or go home holiday expression.

The family traditions can build so high that instead of them ushering together time, they are just a cross off a long list that you miss experiencing the moments spent within them.

Our family loves going to a tree farm and chopping down our tree together but this particular year that felt too much for all of us, so instead we piled up in our minivan, drove to our nearest store, and picked out the perfect tree for our family. As we brought it home and enjoyed our tradition of decorating dance party night, I savored the joy from my children’s faces and knew that we did not miss it just because we did it a different way this year.

CHANGE IT UP to fit within your family’s time so that the activity ushers your togetherness, instead of taking it away.

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I believe that with intentional focus, there are ways to actively maintain pace of this season without missing it along the way, so I have compiled a find my reprieve in the busy list to help our family receive the jolly and the merriment without the anxiety and the feelings of the blah.

How to find reprieve in the busy…

Home decor/ family tradition

  • Lay down Pinterest for this season if you find yourself gravitating toward envy of what your home is not in comparison to others. You do not have to break the bank just to purchase the matching display of Christmas visual.
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Let your children fill it with homemade decorations and use that time as family quality time to slow down and to talk about the reason for this holiday season as you make memories together.

  • Make a family list of holiday activities (shorten it if your time feels strained) and stretch them out during the season to make it fun and engaging  

What are ways that you can simplify your family’s holiday schedule?

Shopping/ Gift giving tips

  • If in store shopping is your thing then arrange for a loved one to watch your children as you invest in a full day, uninterrupted and without short time restraint, and give yourself time to shop for those you love without feeling pressed for time.
  • If online shopping is your thing then set your time, light some candles nearby, turn on holiday music and have fun with choosing the things your people will love.
  • Or do family homemade gifts and use that time to make memories together.

What is your favorite way to give gifts to others?

Meal sharing thoughts

  • I love home cooking and all of the delicious options in choosing holiday seasoned meals, but when you have people coming over and it feels strained to “host” and to “fellowship” then choose fellowship. If home cooking is your taste then look at doing whatever you can the day before or earlier in the day so that when people enter your home then you can be sitting with your guests instead of unseen in the kitchen. Mix up the meal with store bought and home cooked if that allows you presence to enjoy in the time together with your loved ones.

What are some meal prep hosting tips that you can share?

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Workload balance

  • Balancing end of the year tasks can be daunting amidst the hustle and the bustle of the season, yet I have seen destress happen when I work in “power hour” times. Utilize your work times with efficiency and if you need to do one late evening a week in order to be present in other moments then carve that out in your family’s schedule.

What are some work tips that you have in balancing the season with work needs?

Find your merry in this season; stop doing the things that make the joyful moments stressful.

Change it up and do it a different way if need be.

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Hi, my name is Trishia and something that I value about my story is how my heart is outstretched throughout the world and I have many "homes" that fuel my soul. Being born and raised in Alabama, my southern roots remain a deep part of me. Living in New Orleans and then relocating to Cincinnati, post Hurricane Katrina, I learned how being exposed to culture and diversity can build empathy into a person. Married a generous, humble, hard-working man, Brett, from Cincinnati and then later moved to Kenya, Africa where our years spent working overseas has shaped my soul in more ways than I can articulate. We are now back in Cincinnati, investing in building a staffing company, and after 15 years of marriage are raising an 8 year old son, a 9 year old daughter, and a 10 year old son. Jesus is my anchor; I love quality time, sharing heart to heart;, traveling the world remains a passion; witnessing community loving one another well encourages me; photography is a lens I use to invest into the hearts of others at T Ralston Photography {www.framethejourney.com}

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