Bah Humbug!

Education & Training with My Three Readers

Bah humbug!

My Mom used to say this jokingly with her best friend when I was a kid, and I didn't really understand - until I became a full-time full-on Mom of three children myself.

Thanksgiving/ Christmas/ Holiday burnout for moms is a real thing. And I LOVE Christmas. I love everything about it. The traditions, the lights, the food, the weather. And most of all, as a Christian, I love the time of worship and focus on the birth of Christ.


I had no idea all the work my Mom was doing. Over the years, I've tried to pare back and cut out the unnecessary. I don't always do everything homemade from scratch, and I don't put everyone and their dog on my Christmas gift anymore. 

You pretty much have to have direct daily contact with my kid to be on the "teacher gift list". (Used to be the principal, the pe, art, and music teachers, etc.).

I just can't anymore. Trash men don't get a gift anymore. I may not get the cards out. There will NEVER be an Elf on any shelf in our house. 

I have tried to whittle it down to the MOST meaningul traditions that our family love. One is the Advent calendar tradition that we do. We do something a little bit different every year. I even made a printable Advent calendar for 2019 for my blog! We always read something each night of December - something Scriptural, something to lead us to the birth of Christ. And I do take the time to create a little "clue" to send the kids looking for the treat I hid that day. They will remember that forever!

And.. we still watch certain movies, make fudge and decorate sugar cookies, go light-watching, and do all the fun things, but I'm careful to introduce anything new.

Because - the Mom should have peace and rest during this bustling time, too. I"m doing better with it. I just want to take this moment to encourage the weary Mom out there! 

Relax your expectations. Pour your energy into a few important "forever" things. Carve out the time to enjoy the season. Because a happy Mama is more of a gift to her family than a stressed one. More joy for the season!

Comments (17)

Rose Mary Justice
Synergy Realty Pros - Dandridge, TN
Synergy Realty Pros

The important things are spending time with each other.  Making memories will last a lifetime.  I love your choice of reading and treats.  Your children will never forget these things.   

Nov 19, 2019 09:40 AM
Kathy Streib
Cypress, TX
Home Stager/Redesign

Hi Amy- I think a lot of people, especially moms, will be shaking their heads in agreement when reading this.  We all tend to set the expectations high, trying to do everything that we think will make Christmas meaningful, and miss what it's really all about. 

Nov 19, 2019 07:20 PM
Kathy Streib
Cypress, TX
Home Stager/Redesign


                                            Thank you, Amy. 

Nov 23, 2019 06:41 PM
Debb Janes
Nature As Neighbors - Camas, WA
Put My Love of Nature At Work for You

Good for you, choosing the most meaningful and important traditions for your family makes perfect sense. We can't do it all, regardless of our age.  Recently, I was finding myself growing frustrated while putting lights on a tree in our yard. It's very high and I using a pole to place lights - and it kept getting tangled in branches. My frustration level was increasing - finally I stepped away and sat on the porch. I realized the task should bring me joy - and when I stopped trying to set them in the branches "perfectly" the magic happened.  Enjoy every drop of the season, Amy.  Sounds like you've got your priorities in place.  D 

Nov 24, 2019 07:30 AM
Mimi Foster
Falcon Property Company - Colorado Springs, CO
Voted Colorado Springs Best Realtor

And this is the most important blog post of the season. This has been a trying year for my family. I have five daughters and a generous spirit, and the girls and their spouses and the grandkids, of course, are spoiled. But so have their closest friends been, and so many others. THANK YOU for this wonderful reminder. This year will be different from all the others and I can't wait 

Nov 24, 2019 07:40 AM
Sheila Anderson
Referral Group Incorporated - East Brunswick, NJ
The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133

Good morning Amy. Each of us must decide what matters to us and what is important. I hope you have a good holiday.

Nov 24, 2019 07:51 AM
Kat Palmiotti
406-270-3667,, Broker/REALTOR® - Kalispell, MT
Helping your Montana dreams take root

Yes, we should all do what makes us feel happy and in the "spirit." If something makes us feel frazzled, we should just stop doing it!

Nov 24, 2019 08:09 AM
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

Hello Amy - that combination of perspective along with time spent on this planet combine to help us decide/sort the important things in life. Good for you!

Nov 24, 2019 08:56 AM
Dorie Dillard Austin TX
Coldwell Banker Realty ~ 512.750.6899 - Austin, TX
NW Austin ~ Canyon Creek and Spicewood/Balcones

Good morning Amy Brotherman ,

I love your wise message of relax the expectations!! I'm proud of you and hope many take heed to your advice.

Nov 24, 2019 09:25 AM
Francine Viola
Coldwell Banker Evergreen Olympic Realty, Olympia WA - Olympia, WA
REALTOR®, In Tune with your Real Estate Needs

I know so many people can relate to this.  I was just lamenting the other day that I'm glad to have Thanksgiving weekend "off" but actually all I will be doing will be cooking, cleaning, dragging out the decorations, doing errands and will be more exhausted than if I wasn't "off" from work! LOL!

Nov 24, 2019 09:30 AM
Rebecca Gaujot, Realtor®
Lewisburg, WV
Lewisburg WV, the go to agent for all real estate

Great post Amy. I always wonder how my mother did everthing with 11 children in the house. Wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving with your family.

Nov 24, 2019 09:44 AM
Anna "Banana" Kruchten
HomeSmart Real Estate - Phoenix, AZ

Hi Amy Brotherman agreed! Relax and enjoy the real meaning of Christmas and what that means to each of us. My Mom had 8 kids and just thinking of all the craziness makes my head spin. My birthday was Christmas Eve and somehow she always managed to make it special and stand out too. soon as Christmas Eve service was over it was Christmas!

Nov 24, 2019 11:31 AM
MichelleCherie Carr Crowe .Just Call. 408-252-8900
Get Results Team...Just Call (408) 252-8900! . DRE #00901962 . Licensed to Sell since 1985 . Altas Realty - San Jose, CA
Family Helping Families Buy & Sell Homes 40+ Years

I also love Christmas and advent calendars and weekly Sunday night advent time are my favorites.

Nov 24, 2019 06:26 PM
Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543
Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400 - Devon, PA
Selling the Main Line & Chester County

This is so true and glad you worked it out and have avoided burnout.

Nov 24, 2019 06:43 PM
Debe Maxwell, CRS
Savvy + Company (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC

OMG, I love this post, Amy and honestly don't think my boys will ever have the realization that you shared - that things were just magically done by your own Mom and how much work it does take. That is so true and I also think you've laid out THE only important things about the season. The rest is simply fluff - keep it simple and remember the reason for the season. 

Nov 25, 2019 12:02 AM
Charita Cadenhead
eXp Realty - Birmingham, AL
Serving Jefferson and Shelby Counties (Alabama)

You definitely have me in your corner.  I believe that things change over time and even if they don't change organically, sometimes we just have to make a conscious decision to change things.  It's okay for us to create new traditions and it's okay if they evolve over time.  I stopped stressing out over Christmas years ago.  If I recall correctly, things changed for we when retailers started putting up Christmas decorations in August. 

Nov 26, 2019 07:05 AM
Tom Bailey
Margaret Rudd & Associates Inc. - Oak Island, NC

Amy, this is a great post. I understand better than most men do. My first wife had health challenges, and I didmost of the Christmas prep!

Nov 26, 2019 11:52 AM