jug•gling the nev•er-end•ing dec•em•ber to-do list

We are halfway through December and Christmas is right around the corner.  Every year the holidays seem to sneak up on me.  I have huge goals to finish my Christmas shopping in November, have the gifts wrapped and the Christmas cards mailed by the first week of December and have loads of cookie dough made and stocked in the freezer until I’m ready to bake during the holidays.  Every year I have this plan – this grandiose vision that I will meet all my goals and be sipping eggnog in the evenings while watching Love Actually in the couple of weeks leading up to the big day.

Yeah. Right.

At this rate, I won’t be sipping eggnog until I am buying it at 50% off at the grocery store when the holidays are over.

A mom is always busy – it seems like we have something going on every day, 365 days of the year.  Everything is meticulously planned, to the minute, in order to fit it all in.  In the six weeks leading up to Christmas, we take on what seems to be an exponential increase in our usual to-do lists (as if those lists didn’t need to be cut back already)!

  • Christmas shopping – I hardly go to the store anymore and opt to purchase gifts online but it’s not often done all at one time.  The list of people to buy for often stays on my mind for a few weeks as it slowly gets done.
  • Christmas gift wrapping – the most tedious process over the holidays.  The worst part is trying to find bits of time here and there between everything else to finish it before Christmas Eve.
  • Christmas baking – I love Christmas baking, but not every other night.  Overall, it adds about 2 days to my “to-do” list.
  • Christmas concerts – My son is at a new school this year that couldn’t find a space in time to host a Christmas concert.  Was I upset?  Hell no.  I could have given the principal a big hug.  The school will have a spring concert instead.  I still get to see my 7-year-old in a concert while having one less thing to put on that December “to-do” list.  Win-win.
  • Christmas concert (if you are a teacher or are married to one) – I will definitely not see my husband for two days and he has already been working overtime on his school’s production.
  • Classroom/ daycare holiday celebrations – I’m putting “pick-up fruit tray” more than once on my “to-do” list.
  • Work holiday parties/lunches – Two nights in our family calendar.  Office offsite lunches are also more plentiful during the month of December so I plan on a couple of those as well.
  • Hosting family/friends – no matter how simple I try to make it every year, it is still a lot of work and involves extra grocery store trips, cleaning, cooking, and baking.  One hosted evening equals a couple of days of preparation.

Of course, as you all know, none of our other “to-do” list items get put on hold while we try to keep our heads above water in December.  Hockey games and jersey laundry duty, dance lessons and dance recitals, after school science team meetings, the office move to a new location, and work project deadlines all remain on the list and will continue well into the new year.  If this weren’t enough to do, us moms always find the sudden urgency to clean out the closets or under the bathroom sink before January 1 hits…am I right?

The December juggle is tough but we will all make it through.  Juggle what you can, fake the rest (store-bought shortbread is just as good as homemade), and enjoy that eggnog.  You deserve it.

Happy Holidays


the mother juggle