Holiday preparations are in full swing at our home, and while they have been eagerly anticipated, the work that accompanies our preparing is rocking our calendar and zapping our energy. There are lots of things that I am good at, but juggling a schedule is not one of them. When we enchant a shift in routine, or find ourselves in a season where there are countless activities and how do we cultivate peace in our hearts and in our homes? So, sweet mamas, I present, a Five Ways to Find Hope in the Holiday Bustle, or any time when you are overwhelmed, because don't we all need just a bit more merry?
1. Take Time to Look at the Big Picture
Carve out a few hours when you can open your calendar and see the big picture of what is happening in the coming weeks. Mentally prepare for what lies ahead and how you will manage the logistics. Pray for God to lead you by faith in all your commitments, and maybe even to help you say no to a few things that don't fit for you in this season. Can you enlist a friend to help with pick-up or drop-off, adjust the baby or toddler's nap to ensure that your day will flow a bit more smoothly, or prep any supplies in advance for an outing or event? Even small changes can make a big difference!
2. Prep Like a Mad Woman
Nothing makes my family crazier than to being on the go AND starving, and even though I've been a mom for over a dozen years, nothing sneaks up on me more than dinner time (or lunch...or breakfast!) I need a game plan! Somehow, as my holiday baking list is carefully laid out and ready to go, our normal meals get booted to the back seat. If you're stuck trying to meal plan, you can download the bi-weekly meal plan right here at The Better Mom- it is amazing, This month, I'm spending time grilling and freezing chicken and ground beef, slicing vegetables, and making sauces on the weekend when my husband can take a shift with the kiddos. Then on weeknights, my sous chef work is done and I'm able to put our meal together in a lot less time. Are there things you can do ahead?
3. Laugh a Little!
A good laugh is truly the most wonderful of reset buttons, moms! If you find yourself with a huffy tone, feel tense or grumpy on the inside, take a minute to make goofy faces with your kids, twirl until you're dizzy or just google some knock-knock jokes together...I promise you will be ready to tackle what is before you afresh and your children will light up at the way you lead their hearts into a sweet connection with you!
4. Don't Be Afraid to Fail
At the end of the day, if you crawl into bed with a to-do list that isn't all crossed off, with ideas of crafting and shopping that didn't quite make it to life in your home, or with the realization that you completely forgot about basketball practice, ballet class, the PTA meeting or your mother-in-law's birthday....take heart! Sweet mama, you can take your burdens, concerns, heartache and even your schedule to the feet of Jesus every single day. Rest in him. Remember that you are lovely and that you will never get it all right or be perfect. There is grace and so so much to be learned when we stumble. Don't be afraid that you won't keep it all together!
5. Don't Neglect Your True Nourishment
It might just be the easiest thing to skip, forget, or let slide by when you are overwhelmed, but friends, you need time every single day in God's Word. Search for treasure, seek wisdom, bring your petitions to his feet and listen for his voice. There is nothing that will sustain you more than meditating on his word and joining your heart to his in prayer. Don't miss what God has made you for, don't miss enjoying his very real presence, because your days are too full. Make time and let him carry you through the rest of this season...it is all about waiting on him, remember?
Share some of your ideas for making it through overwhelming seasons in the comments? Wise women copy other wise women, and I'd love to copy all the wise things you do! Let's get a big list going to help each other in this community.