There's nothing like seeing Christmas through the eyes of your kids but getting through it with them in tow can be exhusting.
Read on for how you can make things a little easier and survive Christmas with the kids.
It is a wonderful time of the year for doing lots of lovely arts and crafts or play activity ideas but in reality trying to fulfil all the things you've pinned on Pinterest is sometimes unrealistic.
Younger children have short attention spans and there are other things that you will need to be doing so be realistic about what you and your little one will be able to achieve.
Younger children in particular do best when they have some sort of structure to their day.
Tiredness and hunger never bring out the best in little ones so try and keep to their usual meal and nap times to avoid over tiredness and ensure that they eat well.
Less can be more
Younger children can often find Christmas overwhelming. Staggering present opening over the course of a few days works well for some. Often they are wanting to play with a present as soon as it is opened so allowing them some time to play quietly away from the chaos can help too.
If your little one is not a fan of roast dinner then serving up a plate full of it on Christmas Day isn't going to change that. Encourage them to try parts of it but also ensure that there is something that they will definitely eat to accompany it.
Older kids often like helping so let them be involved in your planning. From the food shopping list to gifts for others give them some responsibility. Perhaps they may like to be in charge of arranging the gifts under the tree and handing them out on Christmas Day or setting the table for Christmas dinner.
Let it be
I love a Christmas jumper, pj's and socks but not all older kids feel the same so ask before you buy and let it be if they really do not want to be part of a photo shoot looking like Christmas has thrown up over them! It won't be many more years and their love of all things OTT will be back!
As kids get older the amount of festive things they want to do gets less so don't expect them to be making family members cute Christmas cards anymore or wanting to make a gingerbread house. Let them chose what they want to do and if possible go with it, perhaps suggesting a new family board game or letting them be in charge of Christmas movies to watch.
Give them some space
Older kids and Teenagers in particular like their own company or that of their mates on Facetime and it's important they still get that space however, chatting through your expectations of what you would like them to do/be a part of beforehand is a good idea to ensure they understand that Christmas is not just about them.
So that's the kids sorted but it is also important that you take some time for yourself and have a chance to relax. Make sure that others are mucking in and that you are able to enjoy the festivities too.
Merry Christmas to you all!