holiday fireplaceDon’t beat up the messenger.  Every year I send out a blog or newsletter letting people know that in 6 + weeks the main holiday in the USA, Christmas, will be here.  And every year I get boos and hisses for being the messenger.

Why is it that you react that way?

They have not changed the time of year for Thanksgiving, Chanukah, Christmas or Kwanza.   And Christmas, which seems to be the biggest of these yearly holidays, ALWAYS lands on the same date each year…the 25th of December.

Yet when I speak about the holidays all I get are rolled eyes, grunts and groans and very little positive anticipation of the next several weeks.

I do not have all the solutions for skipping and/or improving a stinky attitude or stress for this holiday season, but I’ve got some terrific suggestions that I know have worked and worked well…eliminating stress around money, time and general negative anticipation.

christmas cardsThe total list for the 2015 NO Stress Holiday Season is right hereI hope you share this link with everyone you know.  The list contains all the best loved and best working stress relieving and money saving ideas, tips, techniques and strategies since the inception of my annual NO Stress Holiday list for the past 15 years. 

Read on for this years’ take on gifts and money which is from personal experience and been used by my clients with grandly wonderful results:

First of all.  Do not buy anything for anyone.  That will save you some serious money.

Secondly, have your kids or someone else’s kids help create and wrap whatever it is that you are giving.  Remember that kids love tape and glue so have lots of it available. 

GIVE THE GIFT OF YOUR TIME – it is the most special gift you can give.

Wrap the kid created card with newspaper, old magazine pages, construction paper from the play room, printer paper that was going to be used for recycle. 

Decide what it is you are going to give of yourself and put it in a card.  There is SO MUCH you can give:

  • Lunch by your favorite creek
  • Wash someone’s car because you are so good at it
  • Provide 2 hour sessions on technology to your parents or grandparents
  • Help clean a garage or basement
  • Sunday drive in the country
  • Babysitting for kids or aging parents who need some time
  • Turn off the TV, device, laptop, pad – whatever and tell stories of your life
  • Take someone to story time at the library
  • Novel idea – ask them what they would like from you

snowman reindeerI give what I am good at.  I am a Master Gardener and certified in Permaculture so I can pretty much do and consult on your yard, landscaping, garden…so I fill my cards for my special people with two hour segments to consult on their yards and a weed while I am there.  People are thrilled and I get to play in the dirt and talk about my favorite pastime.

My son in law gave me a beautifully polished and waxed car cause he LOVES doing that and I never will.  However, I feel the joy still because he did something cool to the windshield and every time it rains, the rain just makes itself into droplets and is easily wiped away.  To me that is magic; something I would never do; makes me think of him when it rains and I am totally grateful for his time.

My kids and friends give me their time.  Working my yard with me…walking in a favorite place…teaching me new tricks on my device…sharing a recipe for a homemade cream or food.

We put the cards on the tree and there is great anticipation on what will be given this year. 

If I do give a wrapped gift, you can always tell it is from me because it is done with nontraditional wrapping.  By the way, I am renowned for how I can wrap with crepe paper and make it look good.  Well, at least you know it is from me.

What  are you going to give them?  And what are you going to give yourself? 

wrapping presents reused paperBefore my family and friends starting sharing our time as gifts, we spent thousands of dollars on gifts.  Now we spend time.  Precious, loving, fun producing, memory making time.

Do share the NO Stress Holiday tips 15th annual list with everyone you know whether personal, work, church, family.  There is something on the list they will love and use.   

Blessing and love, 


 P.S.  Go sign up for the list.  You will be glad you did!!!!!!!!

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