Many people love the holiday season, but my favorite time of year comes after the hoopla of Christmas has passed.
Don’t get me wrong, I have some friends who are Christmas Lovers – they begin counting the weeks until Christmas starting in July, finish their holiday shopping by September, decorate in October, start playing Christmas music and carrying around Starbucks holiday cups in November, and begin their official daily countdown on December 1. But more than all of the prep, what I love most about Christmas is seeing my family, and I wouldn’t trade that for the world. I have to admit that every year, I feel a sense of relief once the Christmas craziness is over, probably because every year, despite my best efforts, here’s what happens:
- I buy gifts that people pretend to like, but really, miss the mark. I know, it’s the thought that counts (and I do try!), but I’m über practical so I can’t see the sense in buying people things they don’t love.
- Starting in 2014, I travel with young children (who puke in the car!!).
- I eat far too many cookies. I can’t really blame anyone but myself for this one. I’ll just say I don’t do well when tempted by treats. Check out this photo of half a pie I found in the trash room in my building. Apparently I’m not the only one #thestruggleisreal … though I have to wonder, did the leaver of the pie actually think a stranger would raid the trash room and eat the rest??
- I end up pushing (and getting pushed) through crowds of tourists in midtown Manhattan. We took the kiddos to see the big tree and they LOVED it because they are obsessed with lights at the moment. It was so worth it, but we had to endure lots of shoving to make it happen.
My favorite time of year is after Christmas, specifically this week, which I always use to look back on the past year, look forward to the next, and get my household in order for what’s to come. I don’t do big New Year’s resolutions, but I do appreciate the idea of a fresh start. There is something exciting about a new year, unmarred and unknown. I like to look at it from this distance and wonder what might unfold.
To give you a sense of what I’m usually up to during this week, in past years, I’ve written a personal vision, set goals, completed photo projects, created vision boards, re-organized my apartment, refreshed my wardrobe, and more.
This year, I have a week off from work (yes!!!), but so does our nanny (gah!), so I’m on full-time mom duty, which is super hard. It’s easy to forget this when you’re a working mama. Taking care of two toddlers is no joke!
This week, I have grand plans to dive head first into my list of projects. Between nap times and the time after C+E’s bedtime and before mine, if I focus, I should be able to get my organization on and wipe out 80% of this list. Bolded items are priority items.
It helps that this week is a recovery week for IM training and that Michael will be traveling at least one night. I am substantially more productive when he’s not home luring me into takeout and Netflix!
Here’s what’s up (by area):
- Organize the Tupperware (honestly, this should be a weekly task)
- Clean out coat closet
- Clean out kitchen pantry
- Reorganize “junk drawer”
- Set up charging station
- Sift through drawers / closet and purge unused items
- Hang calendar & new framed art
- Clean out C+E’s drawers, donating clothes that don’t fit / are out of season
- Sell / Donate old gear / toys
- Set up new toys
Self / Family
- Write Thank You notes
- Take advantage of after Christmas sales to buy triathlon gear for training (in progress)
- Use gift certificates (in progress)
- Go through photos from 2015 to reflect on the year
- Consider 2016 and create a vision for the year
Do you have extra time away from work this week? How are you spending it? What are your end of year traditions?
I hope you enjoy the rest of the week!