How to Survive the Holidays with Kids
Sometimes, it can feel like all you need is a break after spending the holidays with your kids. This is completely normal and does not make you a bad parent; you are only human after all. With the Christmas holidays coming up, you are probably wondering how you are going to survive it this year. This feeling of dread gets even worse if you are planning to travel with your kiddos.
If you get a feeling of impending doom every time you think about the holidays, you are not alone. In this guide, you will find tips and tricks that will help you survive the holidays with your kids, and if you are traveling, have a great time with them as well.
1. Prepare your Child
Children, especially younger ones, thrive on routine. While Christmas is an exciting time for them, it also throws a spanner in the works when it comes to their routines and the sense of security they are used to. If you are planning to travel with your little one this Christmas, prepare her for some of the changes she’ll experience such as sleeping in a new bed or having unfamiliar toys to play with. It will also help ease her anxiety when you reassure her that some parts of her routine will not change, such as her bathtime routine and her bedtime stories.
2. Involve Her in the Planning Process
Involve your child in the planning process for your holiday. If you are planning to travel out of town, let her know in advance as well as the mode of transport you will be using. You can make the revelation even more fun by showing her where it is on a map, photos of the rooms you will be staying in online, and the activities you’ll do once you get there. Allow her to pack a bag with a few special things that remind her of home. You can also bring her favorite blanket, pillow, or nightlight.
3. Take it Easy
It is easy to get carried away and try to pack as many activities as possible into a single day. Try not to do this during the holidays. Instead, schedule a few fun activities for the day, with plenty of time for your children to relax. If you are traveling, remember that your little one will probably be exhausted by the time you get there. So be sure to schedule some quiet time in her day so she can relax and rest after the journey.
4. Consider Kid-Friendly Activities
When you travel for the holidays, you may find yourself gravitating towards activities that you like, such as visiting an art gallery or museum. But will your child enjoy it? If your answer is no, you can either opt to bite the bullet and do something kid-friendly instead or arrange for childcare if your hotel offers this service so you can go and have fun by yourself.
5. Make the Right Flight Arrangements
When flying is the only way to get to your destination this Christmas, you need to make a few smart decisions. If you have a younger child that is prone to tantrums, or if you have a child that finds it difficult to sit still for too long, you might want to book a flight with stops along the way for your child to stretch her legs. If you have an older child who can distract herself with an inflight movie, go for a direct flight. Avoid traveling later in the week or earlier in the day because that’s when flights are most crowded. If your child will need a meal on the flight, make these arrangements beforehand. Pack a few games and activities as well as a few cheap new toys that you can give her every hour or so.
6. Traveling On The Road
Road trips are yet another great way to travel for the holidays. You can make it even more efficient by starting the trip when your child would usually take a nap. You can even load her in the car while she is still in her PJs and drive at night. If you have to travel while your kiddos are awake, make sure everyone has a carry-on bag of entertainment items such as tablets or music players.
The key to surviving the holidays with kids is to keep them happy and entertained. Prepare your child for any changes to her routine and try not to cram her days full of activities. She needs to rest, too! A well-rested, happy child will make your life blissful during Christmas. Good luck!