(BRANDON HANSEN/Chewelah Independent)
With Christmas now just around the corner, there are gifts to buy and wrap, holiday parties to attend, trees and decorations to put up and countless other things to do for the holidays.
Sometimes it can be stressful when people should be enjoying both their friends and families during the holidays. That is why we put this handy dandy survival guide together so you can keep your Holiday Cheer!
IF YOU’RE TRAVELING, CHECK THE WEATHER
Weather can be spotty in Eastern Washington and the Pacific Northwest during the holidays. It’s always important to check weather conditions and make sure you’re prepared for the conditions you will be driving in. Give yourself plenty of time to get to your destinations. Check conditions and forecasts for mountain passes as those could present you with the most challenging travelling conditions.
BE AWARE OF ICE ON SIDEWALKS
A minor point, but do you want to spend the holidays with an arm sling. Injuries because of snow and ice happen all the time. Make sure you salt and shovel your walkways and understand the conditions you’re walking in.
WATCH OUT FOR REINDEER
Or regular deer. The Stevens County type don’t have red noses so they are hard to see in the dark.
BE WARY OF PORCH PIRATES
The crime of stealing from people’s porches is getting more prevalent. If you’re waiting for a gift in the mail:
1. Install security cameras to catch the thief.
2. Get to know the delivery people.
3. Network with neighbors and agree to have packages dropped off at their place if they’re in.
4. Pay for a package receiving service: either a PO Box or a personal mailbox at a mailbox store. You can get your package safely delivered there or get packages delivered to your workplace.
5. Watch tracking info like a hawk.
6. Be worried you have pirates. If you see a pirate ship pull up to your neighborhood, be very worried.
ADMIT TO YOUR RELATIVES DIE HARD IS A HOLIDAY MOVIE
You can argue about politics during the holidays, but don’t argue about this. Die Hard is a holiday movie. So is Lethal Weapon. So is the movie Miracle. Don’t forget the growing collection of both holiday comedy and holiday horror movies. You don’t just have to watch “It’s a Wonderful Life” over and over.
BE AWARE OF FIRE HAZARDS
That Christmas tree by the fireplace can be a fire hazard, so can that power strip that is supplying your mountain of Christmas lights with electricity. A house fire is not something you need adding stress during the holidays.
The holidays can be busy but don’t stop taking care of yourself. Get plenty of sleep. Make sure you’re hydrated and eat healthy food. Everybody expects to gain weight over the holidays, but keep your exercise routine and continue to stay active to keep your body in good condition. It’s easy to forget this when things get busy. Pace yourself as well with all the events going on.
Talk with relatives about who is going to take on which responsibilities before the holidays. Like anything, communication is key and can save you a lot of last minute holiday stress when something will eventually get messed up. Come up with a plan before moving forward with holiday plans. Be realistic with your plans and don’t try to have the perfect Holiday.
GIVE YOURSELF A BUDGET
Budget your spending for the holidays so you don’t stress out as much about getting gifts. Also remember some gift ideas can be relatively low cost including a home-cooked meal, small gift cards, a coffee drink or even coming up with something handmade.
AVOID SPOKANE LIKE THE PLAGUE
Shop local, unless you want to be stuck at the Francis Ave. stoplight all afternoon.
DON’T DRINK TOO MUCH
It’s easy to have too much Bailey’s in your Christmas drink, but make sure you moderate your drinking and don’t overindulge. This can lead to some negative impacts on the holidays.
THINK AHEAD WHEN PLANNING FAMILY TRADITIONS YOU’D LIKE TO HAVE
Everybody has traditions for the holidays. When planning for November and December, decide what traditions you’d like your family to experience.
GET LOTS OF PHOTOS
They will definitely be worth the memories. Just don’t get photos of people eating.