Our Survival Guide to Handling Christmas Festivities at School
It’s that time of year when parents are inundated with requests for random Christmas play costumes, home-baked goods, Christmas jumpers and an endless list of items for the school Christmas Fair. And don’t forget all of the invitations to the various plays and concerts – it is the school term which fills many parents with dread and the spirit of Christmas has often been drowned before we reach the big day itself.
So how can we manage this busy time of year and come out the other side with a smile on our face?
Step 1. The Christmas Jumpers & Play Costumes
Don’t feel pressured to buy a brand new costume or make one yourself.
Perhaps you can, with a bit of creative license, cobble one together with things you already have at home.
It’s also a good idea to set up a system within schools whereby children can borrow costumes and jumpers – do you really need that donkey costume for last year or could you lend it to this year’s donkey? And how many times did your child actually wear their Christmas jumper?
This could prove a little fundraiser for the PTA – collecting and storing old costumes and then charging a small fee for children to borrow them. Or you could simply set up a ‘swap-shop’.
2. The Bake Sale
You shouldn’t feel pressured to bake a cake, there is nothing wrong with taking in a shop bought version.
If you feel that people may judge you, you could always put it on a paper plate, sprinkle it with icing sugar and cover in Clingfilm! No-one will know the difference!!!
3. Attending Christmas Fairs
Get the children involved in sorting things out for the fair. They could also help make things such as cakes and simple crafts. And on the day, don’t feel obliged to spend a fortune – set yourself a budget and give the children their own money to spend so they don’t have to keep asking you – this is a good way to teach the children about the value of money.
4. Attending School events
You cannot attend every single event in your child’s school life, especially if you work. You need to prioritise the ones that you (and your child) feel are the most important: sit down together, have a discussion and honestly explain the situation to your child. If you are lucky enough to have family nearby you could spread the load and each attends one. And, if you have younger children who aren’t invited, you could call on family to help or set up a babysitting circle with friends (this could also be used to manage a child-free shopping trip).
5. Being organised
It is easy to miss things at this time of year so it is a good idea to have a planner that is visible to all. Print one off of the Internet and write down all of the events that you need to remember. Also, remember to add when your child needs to take specific items into school. Stick it to the fridge so it is visible to the whole family and hopefully at least one of you will remember to check it each morning.
Parents who are tired, stressed and stretched to their limits are not in the best position to raise happy contented children. Trying too hard and taking on too much can lead to a parent being exhausted and unable to properly care for their children. Choosing a parent-centred lifestyle means parents avoid putting their children’s wants above their own health and well-being.
This post was written by Claire Gillies