If your children are not in a holiday camp, chances are they are doing what my children are doing today — watching Netflix movies, snacking and asking questions about which relatives homes they’ll visit tomorrow.
Holiday and winter break periods can be tricky for parents. Fortunately, because my job follows the same schedule as my children’s,we’re off on the same days.
It does require more planning on my part, however. Keeping all three — ages 8, 10 and 12 — occupied, busy and entertained for the break is not easy.
There are only so many hours of video games they will play and so many hours of television they will watch before growing bored.
It’s a good thing my calendar is packed with a lot of “to do” lists, much of which include designated days for closet cleaning, porch sweeping and sorting through winter clothes.
This Thanksgiving eve is also packed with visits to the pediatrician for their flu shots, dental visits and my son’s haircut appointment.
My stepson, who is in college, complained weeks ago about his throbbing tooth. He’ll be sitting in the dentist chair today, too.
Were it not for holiday breaks, a lot of household business, errands and other projects would be neglected.
I also plan to knock out a couple of must-do chores from my own list, including cleaning my closet. This is the time of year when clutter takes over, probably because I’m constantly pulling out winter coats and sweaters and not getting rid of the springtime clothes.
Holiday breaks are also the perfect time to light, or in our case, flick a switch to fire up the fireplace.
And while everyone is gathering around the fireplace, I’ve planned another family project involving framing and organizing hundreds of old photos that are boxed away in the attic.
And no holiday week is complete without cooking. This is the week when my oldest daughter has committed to baking a cake and making a batch of Rice Krispy treats.
Shopping can pep up the holiday week as well. For the past two years, I’ve seen friends and family racing off to department stores on Thanksgiving night to catch early Black Friday deals. I won’t be one of them. However, I did order an electronic tablet during the deal of the day from a home-shopping channel one recent evening. It sure beat fighting the crowds.
However, according to the National Retail Federation, 140 million holiday people will shop in stores and online during the Thanksgiving week.
Food, shopping and gatherings are a big priority this week, but it’s also a great time to catch up on chores, get those teeth cleanings and flu shots out of the way and take some time to break the routine a bit.
Chante Dionne Warren is a freelance writer. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.