When All is Not Calm and Bright: Giving The Gift of Holiday Help


When All is Not Calm and Bright: Giving The Gift of Holiday Help | Duluth Moms Blog

Silent Night used to be one of my favorite Christmas carols.  Now that I have parented through three first Christmases, those tender lyrics sting a bit.  Nothing has ever been calm and bright for me in those first few months with a newborn.  Those first Christmases were bittersweet for me.  Returning to work after maternity leave, juggling the new demands of our now larger family, and trying to maintain all the holiday traditions that I so loved and usually enjoyed, turned me into a classic Christmas Scrooge during those first holiday seasons.  There was no time, no help, and no sleep.  It certainly was not the “most wonderful time of the year” for me.  Bah Humbug!

After having survived through several chaotic and sleep-deprived holidays with wee ones, I’ve crafted the ultimate gift list for any new mama. Gift her any of these and you will be sure to put some jolly in her holiday. 

Drive the Sleigh
Take her shopping and drive the shopping cart. It’s often hard for a new mother to leave the house without baby especially if she is nursing.  Instead of offering to babysit, offer to come with her on her shopping trip or holiday errands. Push the shopping cart and watch the littles while she enjoys perusing the aisles.  It’s nice to have company, someone to talk to, and an extra set of hands.

Bring Some Figgy Pudding
Bring over a meal, or order a pizza and have it delivered.  One of the most thoughtful gifts I received one holiday season was a delivered meal from a local restaurant from my sister who lives hours away in another state.  She knew my husband was traveling for work and I was strung out.  Within an hour, I had a meal at my door and I’m pretty sure I cried when I realized I didn’t have to prepare dinner for myself and the kids alone, after a long day at work. 

Gift Wrap
Offer to come over and help her wrap gifts.  Wrapping items, especially with peeping eyes in the house, takes time and a special operations team to ensure top secrecy.  Offer to wrap gifts for her, or if you’re like me and wrapping is a skill you’ve worked hard to perfect since your high school gig at the Hallmark store, give her the time and space to showcase her craft.  Keep younger kids occupied and burp the baby while she trots off to her secret gift stashing location and enters holiday wrapping heaven. Be sure to offer to bring over some supplies or pick some up if she is in need of any.

The Christmas Ham Hair Cut
I don’t care much for honey ham, so what I really want to get my hands on during the holiday season when I have a new baby at home is some pampering.  A massage, a new hairdo, or a trip to the nail salon.  Some time to make myself look less tired and a bit fresher is more luxurious to me than any designer purse in that holiday store ad I am using as a spit up rag.  A gift certificate to a local spa or salon is perfect along with arranging childcare. 

Pack Up Her Sleigh
Is she headed out of town for the holiday?  Help her pack.  Watch the baby while she packs.  Do a load of laundry so she even has clothes to pack.  We travel every single holiday.  We are away from both sides of our families and pack up all our presents, luggage, and Christmas cookies and drive for hours in a quest for holiday cheer.  It’s stressful and lots of work.  I am a Grinch before, during and after it all.  Any help in holding up our, “No present forgotten!” motto would be much appreciated.

Errand Elf
Be Santa’s favorite and call her before you head out to the store.  Ask her if she needs any last minute items and offer to pick them up for her.  Baking supplies, forgotten ingredients, or that Lego set that suddenly went on sale.  Sometimes it is hard to push yourself out the door and into the holiday bustle to grab just a few items.  I remember that Christmas when I ran out of Scotch tape.  Half of my gifts were sealed with blue glue sticks. 

Deck the Halls
Offer to help dig out those boxes of holiday decorations or help hang lights.  I love decorating for the holiday season but an extra set of hands to string lights or help hold up that wreath while nailing down the perfect spot would go a long way to spreading Christmas cheer!  Bring over something warm to serve up in mugs.  Coffee is good.  So is hot chocolate.  And don’t shy away from singing along when your favorite Christmas carol comes up on Pandora.  “Strike the harp and join the chorus…”  Bring a little merry to her household!

A Long Winter’s Nap
And finally, perhaps the most appreciated give of all.  There are very few silent nights in the home of a new mother.  Give the gift of a Christmas nap.  Watch the baby, let her sleep.  Best gift ever! 

Sleep in Heavenly Peace Friends. Sleep in Heavenly Peace.


Comments are closed.