We have been in full tilt holiday mode for awhile here. Though I must admit that there are a lot of things that didn't get done this year, I have also given myself permission to be okay with that. Rather than go crazy trying to make everything/cook everything/see everything, we've made/cooked/done what we can and tried to leave plenty of down time in our schedule so that neither we nor the kids get so stressed out and cranky that the celebration becomes a chore.
So far, it's been working like a charm!
I made homemade gingerbread playdough for the kids and some friends.
(FYI - we use these clear plastic desk blotters on our dining table for clay and/or messy crafts. They cover a pretty big area, can be moved with items on them to dry or be completed later, and are easy to wipe clean. These ones were about 5 bucks at IKEA.)
We've attended both kids' school Christmas parties. Here, Bailey is managing to both eat a peppermint cookie and flip everyone off at the same time. Charming.
Owen's class made and decorated little graham cracker houses. He came home with his belly full of all his "extra" candies, shirt covered in frosting, and a huge smile on his face.
And even though I haven't baked a single cookie, I did manage to make two batches of my baked caramel corn. This is one batch cooling in our kitchen because the first batch had already been given away.
It's a really good thing I only make this once a year because I have no self-control around it and will munch on it until I feel sick.
So, as the year draws to a close, I will be staying close to home and the ones I love. I hope that wherever you are and whatever you celebrate, you are able to surround yourself with love and joy and peace!