HTS?: Surviving the holidays together!

Somewhere in September when most students are getting ready for the new school year I start my Christmas wishlist already. 

‘Cause it starts weeks before, phonecalls from family about days, time, presents and so on. Alle deadlines for school come together, stress about were to go, how to get there, what to wear, and way too much food. That’s my Christmas in short. 
And then with a little luck you have a partner who experiences the same which pushes your blood pressure to dangerous heights around the 25th. 

Luckily, you have me: D 
I went searching for ways of surviving the Christmas together. One of the tips that I encountered: Spend the Christmas in bed .. For the whole How to survive the Christmas together read more!


Research has shown that most relationships are ending after the holiday, in January and February  You both are busy with family obligations, everybody comes together so there are more chances to fight, they are expensive months which can cause stress already and you can probably think of way more reasons why relationships strand after the holidays. Of course that’s not what you want and fortunately there are ways to not become part of the percentages of stranded relationships.

Discuss your expectations!
It’s smart to discuss what your family expects from you in advance with your partner. Especially if this is your first Christmas together. One family does nothing while the other family comes from near and far to be together. Therefore don’t assume that your partner has the same obligations. Determine from discussing your expectations where you want to go and who to meet. And yes you may need to make compromises. First day of Christmas with your parents and Boxing Day with his family out to dinner? Or maybe you take this year’s Christmas dinner for your account and both families are invited? It’s all possible, but make sure you both agree on it!

Extra tip: Especially if this is your first Christmas together the other person doesn’t know what to expect. Be honest about how things feel moderate at your home or what impact the holidays have on you or family members so you know what to expect from each other. That way, not every growl escaping has to be taken personally. But this gives you no right to behave like an idiot because you would have been warned! Consider each other.

Set a budget!
As I noted earlier, the month December is an expensive month which is not easy for everyone. What can help is to set a budget. Consider how much you will spend on whom and whether you buy all the gifts together or each on his or her own family. If you start this on time, you can also start saving money for this purpose way before.
In addition, you should consider traveling to family or food which should be included in the budget plan as well.

Plan!
A logical continuation of the budget is planning. Do not postpone everything and start your Christmas groceries the last day before your huge diner, think and buy gifts in advance so you won’t be left empty hands and also take account of what where to buy. If you are keeping the party at your place you should divide the tasks and be clear about this.
Are you going to visit family, determine in advance how much time you have for everyone and plan visits as logical as possible, for example, from the farthest to closest living relative.

* Extra tip: Do not forget to plan your time together! Through all this bustle people often forget themselves which causes more stress than necessary. For example, go between visits together to a pub for hot coco or walk through the woods.

* Extra tip 2: Make sure you do not schedule too tight, there can always go something wrong, not at least because of weather changes or failed cuisine.


Prepare!
With proper planning comes a good preparation. Think about what you want to wear and make sure that your clothes are clean. Some dishes can easily be prepared a day in advance and otherwise surely pre-cut. The gifts and other things can either be put at the door or loaded in the car already. With good preparation you avoid not only too much time-pressure which puts your schedule in danger and gives stress but also makes you sure that you can enjoy as much of the day rather than spending all day behind the stove.

* Extra tip: Keep it simple, involve the guests and distribute the food. That way it really is something from the family together, you limit the stress for yourself and maybe even learn something new.

Then there is the big day … The party is about to begin! And with a little luck is not as stressful as usual thanks to my good tips!


Stick to your schedule!
If it’s correct you have a planning, try to play by a time-schedule, so do not start your makeup while your partner is already in the car. And how pleasant it may be, do not take a third or fourth piece of cake with your family in law if that means there will be less time left for you two alone.

Count to 10!
Christmas is not the time to talk about family quarrels, so also keep criticism to yourself (especially about your laws). If, however, fights or something like that arise try to step away from it. Everyone experiences stress during the holidays which often causes less patience and more snarling. Keep this in mind and don’t be fooled. Count to ten more often and just laugh. You can always come back on it later, if you still think it’s necessary..

Enjoy!
Ultimately, everyone wants the picture of the TV, to spend a cozy Christmas along with the whole family. That is only possible if you do not compulsively try to reach perfection, count to 10 more often, clench your jaws and above all keep smiling. The fun does not depend on how beautiful the tree is or how perfect the table is set for the even more perfect Christmas dinner, it is what you make of it together, so do not forget to enjoy what you dó have!

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! <3
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