Christmas Carols Already, Bah Humbug!

Okay, so Halloween was last week, Thanksgiving  is three weeks away and the stores are playing Christmas carols and their aisles are filed with decorations, trees and whatever else we may need in December. Bah Humbug… Really?  I think it’s too early and so does my friend Lucy Adams, Author Mom and woman with the best sense of humor ever!

Here’s the problem, little children have no sense of time. Tomorrow could be in five minutes and next month could be in ten. So how are parents supposed to put things in perspective, keep the excitement to a dull roar for another two months, and try to be patient when the sentence that is repeated many times each day is  “Do I get my presents now?” 

And what about teaching your little ones that the holidays are not only about presents. What about Gratitude? Giving Back? Family Traditions? Delicious Food?  How do we share the things that are really important when Christmas in in our faces in October? How do we keep the stress level down while creating wonderful memories for each holiday, one at a time?

Here’s how:

 Lucy Adams interviewed me and a few other experts that weighed in on this very subject. And then she wrote a fabulous article for the Augusta Family Magazine titled: “Combating The Sinister Christmas Creep.”  Here’s an excerpt: 

Stay in Control

Parents are busier than ever. Exhaustion can make a person susceptible to being pushed down the path that commercialism blazes beginning in September. “We wouldn’t think about Christmas in September 20 years ago,” says Blythe Lipman, a parent and preschool consultant who runs the website “The commercialism pushes parents.” Parents want to make their children happy, but it becomes stressful.

A yearning to recapture that feeling from childhood also whisks a parent into the fray. Where parents go, children follow. Take control of the message and the memories. Make sure children are getting the meaning you want them to internalize, not what advertiser A is telling them on TV.  Lipman says, “It’s a time to create memories with the family. That’s what children remember, not the $50 toy they got.”

She suggests that families celebrate each distinctive holiday preceding Hanukkah or Christmas by developing a ritual for each one that makes it different from the others. “Take time to do things with the kids,” says Lipman. “The beautiful customs are what’s important.” This will keep the celebrations from bleeding into each other and minimize confusion for younger children. “It’s important for children to remember something specific they did,” she says. Talk about each holiday, decorate for each holiday, develop family traditions for each in its time. This will deflect the outside world’s premature focus on Hanukkah and Christmas. During the Christmas and Hanukkah season, direct the discussion and the activity beyond the gifts. Share the why behind the holidays and include doing good for others in the planning and preparation.

To read the entire article, click on the link: (And I know you’ll love it!)

Wishing you a Merry November!

Blythe Lipman, President and Founder of Baby Instructions based in Scottsdale, Arizona, is a nationally recognized baby and toddler expert, a parenting consultant, an author of three award-winning books, Help! My Baby Came Without Instructions,  More…Help! My Baby Came Without Instructionsand Help! My Toddler Came Without Instructions, a teacher, a caregiver, a keynote speaker, a blogger AND host of Baby and Toddler Instructions, a weekly Parenting Internet talk radio show which airs live every Wednesday at 11:00 am EST on itunes and toginet.   She is owner of the online parenting magazine My Best Parenting Advice and the site Baby Instructions.
My Best Parenting Advice : Christmas Carols Already – Bah Humbug – by Blythe Lipman and Lucy Adams