Sorry folks, but it’s not an InstaPot or a Roomba that’s on our lists this year.
If you’ve clicked on this article, I have to assume that it’s because you’re not sure what to get that special lady in your life. I’m hoping to share some non-conventional ideas with you. Most cannot be wrapped and put under a tree (so I apologize if you’re reading this as you browse shops at the mall on December 24th!).
As moms, we spend nearly all of our time taking care of other people. When it comes to the holidays, we’ve already planned, shopped, baked, wrapped, and decorated ourselves into a stupor by the time the holidays actually arrive. Show us your appreciation by giving us a non-conventional yet thoughtful gift! It’s quite simple even though it may seem impossible: we want time with our kids, AND we want time away from our kids. We want to have more free time (doesn’t everyone?!). We want to be our best selves, so that we can be the best partners and parents we can. And you can help us! Here are some non-conventional things that we REALLY want this year:
Regarding Our Kids
A fight-free day – We would love it if every day was a battle-free day, but let’s be realistic. One single day where no one argues with anything we say? That sounds like heaven! Get the kids involved, and pick a day where everyone makes an effort to cooperate and show kindness.
One-on-one “dates” with our kids – I have four kids, and last year for Christmas my husband gave me gift cards to their favorite restaurants. In a big family like ours, I know it’s hard for each kid to feel like they’re getting enough individual attention. It was amazing to be able to spend an entire day with each child, one-on-one, where we got to do something special together and, of course, eat at their favorite restaurant. I really treasure those days, and I know the kids did, too!
Regarding Our Homes
A cleaning service – Hiring someone to clean your house might seem extravagant, but I can promise you that it is money well-spent. Part of the problem I have when I clean my house is that I am forever distracted by the kids’ stuff (“Aww, look! A box of baby things under the bed! I better go through each item and reminisce!”). A professional house cleaner can get the job done much more efficiently. Plus, it could save your marriage the “Whose turn is it to scrub toilets?” argument!
Laundry fairy – OK, there is PROBABLY no such thing as a laundry fairy, but maybe there are other people who live in the same house that can sort, wash, dry, fold and put away their own laundry? Maybe?
A subscription to grocery service – Home Chef, Blue Apron, even Kroger Clicklist. These are quite common names lately. Having at least two meals per week planned, prepped, and portioned out can save us busy moms lots of time!
Salon/Spa Day – I love spending time at the salon, getting hair and nails done, or even a massage or facial. I don’t love that when I’m doing those things, I can never fully relax because I am always thinking about how much time I’ve got before I have to get back home. It would be great to be able to spend some time pampering myself and not have to keep checking the clock.
A date night we don’t have to plan! – In my wildest fantasies, I like to imagine my husband coming home from work on a Friday and saying with a smile, “We have a sitter coming in an hour. Why don’t you go shower and change into something that doesn’t smell like spit up? I’ve planned a night to remember for us.” Then the sitter, who he already lined up ahead of time (this is key!), arrives. We kiss the kids goodnight and head out for a night on the town! Or, more likely, we have a kid-free dinner to some place we’ve already got a gift card for. Then maybe do some light furniture shopping, probably return something to Home Depot, and come home by 10 p.m. OK, hopefully we would do something more adventurous, but let’s be realistic!
Send. Us. Out. Of. Town. – Tell me to plan a girls’ weekend or family vacation, with or without kids. I have serious wanderlust around the holidays! So many people travel and then post pictures about their adventures on social media.
Tickets to a show/concert – Pay attention to what music we are listening to lately, and buy tickets to a concert. Again, make the plans for a babysitter yourself; it’s one less thing that we have to worry about! For bonus points, send us to a concert or a show with one of our friends or sisters, and stay home with the kids yourself!
Stitch Fix or Amazon Wardrobe – I am fairly certain that Obama was president the last time I spent money on non-maternity work clothes. My closet is full of outdated, ill-fitting clothing that I largely ignore. I wear mostly athleisure wear for my day-to-day “style.” A wardrobe service might help me find some fashionable clothes that fit my body and make me feel confident.
Social interactions with other adults – Sign me up for a book club or a Mommy’s night out. Call my best friend, or cousin, or sister, and arrange for us to spend some kid-free time together. It would be great to have an uninterrupted conversation for once! Pick up the kids, so I can go out for a drink with my coworkers after work on a Friday. I mean, I love my kids, and I love my husband, but sometimes I need to get out of our little circle!
What is on your unconventional Christmas list this year?
Post a comment below!