I’m Dreaming of a Stress-free Christmas

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Sometimes, all it takes is hearing things out loud for reality to set in. For example, I can probably raise your stress level by simply saying 7 little words: “Just ten more shopping days until Christmas!” Did you feel your blood pressure rise??

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Christmas shopping has always been a headache for me, but usually because of money, but this year my wife has come up with a way to relieve that stress. I had heard this before, and I think it has circulated on social media in the past. The boys will each be getting four presents this year:

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It is a polarizing idea for some, I know. Some feel that this will negatively affect kids who are “used to” getting a lot of presents. Then there are those who feel that this idea will actually help older kids understand life on a budget, and actually help them be thankful for the gifts that the do receive. As a parent on a budget, it helps to know we are not really going outside the budget we set aside for them. As far as stress, this is something that has proven to be very helpful as our shopping is done for them, and has been for a while!

At first, I wasn’t sure how they would take this, but in the end, I think it will be just fine. I say that because this is the first year that they didn’t have a long list of things on their Christmas list. As a matter of fact, when I asked them to start thinking about what they wanted for Christmas they answered with “I’m not really sure,” “I don’t know,” or “gift cards.”

We told them we had already picked picked up “what they need” and “something to wear” and told them they needed to work on the list of “what they want” and “something to read.” Simplifying this didn’t really help either. I literally dragged them to Barnes and Nobel to look for books and to a couple other places for what they wanted. I think I walked away with a few ideas, but nothing really substantial at the time. I have a few left over ideas that I need to pass along to my dad, who has to go shopping for them, too.

Non-shopping stress

While the stress of shopping has been alleviated, now we are dealing with another stress. Remember at the beginning of the blog I mentioned how hearing something out loud can make something a whole lot more real? At Sam’s OB appointment this week we learned that baby is sitting head down – an indicator that she may be here before we know it (and possibly before her due date in February)!

Now, we are aware that with most first babies, they tend to be late rather than early. This statistic was made known to us this week at our birthing class, as well. While the due date is still 64 days away, we are faced with the stress of trying to finish sanding, cleaning, painting, and decorating her room before her arrival. I am feeling the pressure and the stress that goes with it!

This is my first time dealing with drywall – I had no idea just how dusty it gets! The dust from sanding is EVERYWHERE! I end up tracking the dust from room to room as I am working. It is just a mess that I feel will NEVER get clean!

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64 days may seem like a long time, and it is, but I am still working my full time job, working both part time jobs, attending birthing classes, and squeezing in doctor and therapy appointments in there, too. The possibility of our daughter arriving ahead of schedule has my wife and I freaking out a bit, to say the least.

Once I am off the air, I am heading home to try to finish up the sanding and patching. I will probably need to go ask my neighbor for his shop vac to “attempt” to get most of the dust up – just in case I get the walls to the point where we may be able to start painting! I would LOVE to have everything done by Christmas … but I know that is NOT going to happen!!

I may need to add a stress management class to the mix of all the stuff I already have going on ….

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3 thoughts on “I’m Dreaming of a Stress-free Christmas

  1. That is a great plan you have as far as what to get. Your wife gets an A+ for that…that is awesome. Kids these days are more knowledgeable than we were in some respects. We are finished with Bailey’s stuff…the last stuff came today.

    Good luck on the room Keith…keep at it man and you will get it. I had my artist friend to paint a “Peanuts” mural on the wall right before Bailey was born. I hated moving from that house because I know it was painted over.

    Back when I had a lot of disposable income before the boy…My shopping would end on Christmas Eve in a mall…I hardly ever drink at all…but I would order 2 Long Island Teas and wander around shopping…budget be damned! Yea that don’t work anymore.

    Like

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