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Mum's Guide To Hertford Blog


What have we been up to recently? Have we a new family recipe we've loved we want to share? Do we want to highlight a particular area of Hertford? From National Make a friend day to pizza dough recipes you can find it here. We are specialist days out bloggers and when it comes to days out with the kids locally we aim to give you the lowdown. So do head over to our tried and tested pages too. 

From Hertford's Number 1 mummy blogger (in google search results- last updated 24/9/21) and Tots100 chart featured parenting blogger and one of the leading mummy bloggers in Hertfordshire (Rank 3 in Google searches 24/9/21) and rank 4 in google searches for "Hertfordshire bloggers" (11/21). #kayleigh&theboys



How to avoid Christmas burn out!


As i write this article there are around 4 weeks til Christmas. And everywhere I go and every parent I speak to is stressed! Why is it that us parents always end up mega stressed and run down in the run up to Christmas?

It's time to make a change and reclaim our sanity and our festive cheer.

I asked you in my social stories recently what made you most stressed in the run up to Christmas. Here were your top answers.

1: The cost

2: Stress of booking events on time, FOMO

3: Schools- remembering everything for schools

4: Logistics - the need to be everywhere and socialising 

5: Getting Sick

So lets deal with these concerns 1 by 1.

The Cost

The Gifts-Christmas is expensive, there is no getting away from that I recently blogged more about a budget friendly Christmas (details here) but the number 1 way to reduce the cost of Christmas is to reduce the number of people you by for. In the words of Martin Lewis- get off the reciprocal gifting train. Talk to your friends and family, can you do a secret santa instead? Can you just agree to only buy for the kids this year etc? Most people are in the same boat. A few years back I reduced the number of people I needed to buy for by half simply by having a conversation and everyone was delighted I had brought it up. Set a budget and stick to it (I know its hard!) personally once I am done shopping I try to avoid the shops and temptation as much as possible. You do not need a Christmas of excess to have a good Christmas. I have lots more budget friendly tips here.

Christmas Food- How many of us throw food away post Christmas, we feel the need to buy all of the fancy things because TV tells us that's whats needed for a perfect Christmas.

We buy enough food to feed the 5000, and the shops are literally shut for 2 days at most! I'm not telling you you need to miss out, of course not but if you are hosting why not ask everyone to bring something specific or be responsible for one thing. If you are on a budget think about what you actually need and buy realistic amounts of it and don't forget to freeze what you can. I have two hamper baskets on top my kitchen cupboards which every week from October onwards I add a few bits too, we're talking picky bits , things that wont go off. By the time i get to Christmas I have most of those additional bits that I need.

Fancy days out- This also links to a later point BUT there are undoubtedly an abundance of fancy and expensive Christmasy days out locally. As a blogger I am often gifted tickets to review these attractions and I can confirm they are lovely BUT I make a point of only doing one Santa visit a year and for all the fancy days out my children have been on the things they have loved doing the most is walking around town looking at the Christmas lights. Its things like the Ware Bear Trail or walking round Van Hage, its not the expensive things that they talk about each year. If a big Christmas day out is in your budget, then great, but if its not I promise you there are enough FREE and cheap things to do locally to give your children a visit to remember without the huge price tag. Social media is amazing but it can also give us huge FOMO , cut your self some slack and save yourself a huge wedge of dough!

Stress of booking events- FOMO

Now I like to think we can help with this as we always let you know when something is open for booking and we try to update you as much as possible as to where still has spaces. Write key dates on your calendar or get Alexa to remind you if you have one. My top tips would be to prioritize - pick one or two things you want to book and allocate some time to book them. If you've missed out, cut yourself some slack and get on our webpage and look for an alternative, if you get really stuck message me on socials or emails and i'll try and help you find somewhere that has space and don't forget about all the wonderful Christmas moments you can capture at home .

Schools- remembering everything for schools

There is so much to remember this time of year when it comes to Christmas and schools, nativity costumes, Christmas jumper day, bottle tombola, raffle tickets, christmas fayres and more! TOP TOP: Grab your calendar, a hot drink and a black sharpie. Spend a good 30 minutes going through your emails and finding all those key dates and write them in big bold capitals on your calendar and then put it in a prominent position. And remember if its optional and you are feeling overwhelmed say NO!

Logistics - the need to be everywhere and socialising 

Ooh I hear this one a lot! Christmas party season, lets visit great aunt winnie, lets go for a christmas catch up and so on. All of these things are of course lovely BUT only if they bring you joy and aren't going to put you over budget. I do not know why us parents have got ourselves into such a rutt with not being able to say no. Lets champion the words "NO Thank You" this Christmas. Lets schedule in some home time, watch a Christmas movie, have a duvet day. If you really don't fancy the Christmas Party, or you are just exhausted and want an early night, it's ok to say no. If you can't schedule in that pre Christmas visit to relatives or friends houses due to scheduling conflicts say no, arrange to meet after Christmas instead when people are usually less busy and it will give them something to look forward to post Christmas too. 

In the run up the Christmas there are so many bugs flying around prioritize rest, prioritize sleep, prioritize a hot bath and a book, prioritize what ever makes you happy. It is ok to say NO!

Getting Sick

Sadly I am not a miracle worker I am not going to be able to stop you getting sick, but I highly suspect that running on empty, trying to do too much and stress are not helping us to stay healthy. Like i've said above, be kind to yourself, allow time to rest, reduce the expectations of everything being perfect, drink lots of water, try and get some sleep, eat good food with plenty of nutrients in , a good multivitamin always helps. I also like to give my kids and I a probiotic drink especially at this time of year and to drum it into them to keep washing their hands , this isn't a sure fire way to stop yourself getting sick but hopefully it might help a little.

Another top tip I want you to book mark for next year is to follow the lovely Gemma over on The Organised Christmas Blog - this really helps me stay on track when planning for Christmas.

I hope these tips help, we are really our own worse enemy when it comes to Christmas, lets scale things back, be kind to ourselves and try to rediscover the joy of Christmas minus the stress. Keep your eyes peeled for more blogs coming your way including a budget friendly things to do over Christmas blog. This Christmas prioritise your wellbeing, if its too much or it doesn't bring you joy - say no!

Lots of Love

Kayleigh & The boys


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