1. Plan Your Shopping & Be Resourceful!
Reduce stress and anxiety, mental and physical fatigue, & spread out your spending by following these tips!
Research & Plan Your Shopping
- Google Black Friday and Cyber Monday coupons and deals to learn about popular items that will be on sale.
- Don’t toss your Thanksgiving Day local newspaper to the side this year! Check out what your local stores have to offer, especially because some items that are not usually on sale, may be on sale this year.
- Make your gift lists and stick to them to not only save on time, but money too!
- This may be a good time to think about future home improvement or re-decorating projects! Get a few things now instead of later (only if they’re on sale of course – at least that’s how I go about it)!
- Decide where you’ll purchase gifts and compare Black Friday and Cyber Monday pricing if you can, to figure out where you’ll save the most.
- Once you’ve researched your deals, ONLY FOCUS on those money-saving items now and plan another day to complete the rest of your shopping. Keep Super Saturday (Saturday before Christmas) in mind – it’s typically a great day to find last minute deals!
Gift Wrapping Hacks
- Wrap as you go! The moment you bring home a gift, wrap it within a few days and set it aside – you’ll have plenty to do as it gets closer to the Holidays!
- Check out this video to learn how to wrap cylindrical items, make a gift bag out of wrapping paper, create a pocket in your wrapping like for a card, and even make an accountable handle on your gift out of a wide ribbon.
- Glass bottles and jars from soups, sauces, drinks, and candles make excellent gift containers!
- How can you wrap those odd shaped items? Why with stretched out, too small, or old clothing like sweaters, shirts, or jeans, of course!
Make Or Buy a Few “Just Add a Tag Gifts”
My fun and easy go-to’s include:
- Buy or make candles
- Dip Mix Ornaments
- Garlic, rosemary, or lemon infused Olive Oil
- Cookie in a jar
- DIY Sharpie mugs
- Handmade snowglobe – with or without water!
- Clothespin trivets to use underneath hot cups and dishes or plant pots!
- DIY Coasters
- Stove top Christmas potpourri
- Bath salts or bath bombs
- 2021 photo calendars
2. Meal Plan Now
Meal planning is of particular importance this year if you aren’t having your typical crowd number for the Holidays.
- Plan Entrees, Sides, & Desserts
- Embrace scaling back portions based on your expected crowd this year to reduce food waste and help remove the guilt of “needing to eat it all” when too much is made!
- Try a minimalist approach – tone down the usual number of entrees, side dishes, and desserts to reduce shopping and time spent in the kitchen.
- Change Up Your Usuals & Take Advantage of a Smaller Crowd
- Trial healthier (yet still delicious tasting!) versions of typical dishes and desserts to improve the nutritional content and cut some calories.
- Green Bean Casserole → green beans & mushrooms topped with a butter garlic sauce; roasted vegetable mix; roasted parsnips
- Mashed Potatoes → roasted baby potatoes topped with rosemary or a balsamic glaze; cauliflower mash
- Au Gratin Potatoes → cheesy spaghetti squash; cauliflower au gratin
- Salad Kits → make your own with dark green leaves, cut cucumber, diced bell pepper and onion, sliced carrots, & cherry tomatoes topped with a vinaigrette or infused olive oil (serve dressing on the side so leftovers can be easily repurposed!); tabouli
- Candied Yams → plain diced sweet potatoes topped with herbs; minced candied pecans mixed in with plain mashed sweet potatoes
- Stuffing → cauliflower stuffing; quinoa or squash base with chopped kale, diced apples, mushrooms, chestnuts, & rosemary
- Hearty Creamed Corn → lower-calorie creamed corn
- Cranberry Sauce → fresh cranberry relish; cranberry bake
- Sweet rolls → whole wheat popovers; pita bread quarters
- Regular Brownies → navy bean brownies
- Cookies → frozen Greek yogurt bark, no bake energy bites
- Pie → chia pudding topped with whipped cream
- Ideas to Repurpose Or Freeze Leftovers
- Turkey → freeze in slices for cold turkey sandwiches or melts
- Wrap in freezer paper or foil before putting in freezer style ziplock bags
- Mashed Potatoes/Sweet Potatoes → fry with an egg, diced bell pepper, & onion
- Corn/Creamed Corn → freeze in ziplock bags
- Gravy → healthy biscuits and gravy, top meatballs, add to soup or pasta
- Holiday Roasted Vegetables → toss leftovers with quinoa or choice of pasta
- Green Salad → freeze plain in freezer style ziplock bag to toss in smoothies
- Fresh vegetables like cauliflower, broccoli, carrots, bell pepper → blend/rice separately or together and freeze in freezer style ziplock bags
- Turkey → freeze in slices for cold turkey sandwiches or melts
3. Focus On Sleep, Nutrition, & Hydration
The weeks leading up to and throughout the Holidays can throw off healthy patterns you worked so hard to create and maintain, so make them a priority to help stay on track!
- Focus On Sleep
- Fact: The Holiday season can unintentionally bring on difficulty sleeping and sleep deprivation because of everything going on and everything that needs to happen, which means preparation to still get sleep is key to keep your sleep schedule as normal as possible.
- Tips: Start adding in a few extra pro-sleep habits, foods, and beverages now and throughout the Holidays to still fall asleep easily and stay asleep to get those 7-9 hours you need every night.
- Pros: Keep your immune system on high alert, maintain your hormone levels, regulate your body temperature mechanisms, and mentally stay in tip-top shape especially for all of the planning, shopping, making, and baking!
- Focus On Nutrition
- Fact: The Holidays tend to promote weight gain.
- Tips: 1. Save the buying and making of desserts for the few actual days you celebrate. If that doesn’t cut it, minimally opt to make healthier versions leading up to the Holidays! 2. Keep to a schedule of healthy homemade meals – don’t let the Holiday rush push you towards restaurant dining, take-out, or poor meal choices in general.
- Pros: Sticking as close to your regular healthy eating habits as possible leading up to celebrating the Holidays will promote weight maintenance or minimally reduce the amount of weight you otherwise would gain from indulging for weeks vs just the days of celebration – because let’s be honest, we’re all human and it’s hard not to indulge on the actual days of celebration!
- Focus On Hydration
- Fact: When the yummy hot seasonal beverages are brought out, you may tend to drink more caffeine, more calories in beverage form, and whip out the wine glasses, scotch glasses, or open a beer more often than usual.
- Tips: AVOID THEM! – Just kidding. ‘Tis the season for fun beverages as they only come around once a year! 1. Still keep your health goals in mind. Drink your high calorie, caffeinated, and alcoholic beverages in moderation. Although it’s safe for most adults to drink up to 400mg of caffeine per day, it’s best to consume the least amount possible and reserve caffeine for just the morning. 2. Don’t let alcohol become a nightcap. How your body metabolizes alcohol throughout the night can negatively affect your sleep cycle, the length of time you stay asleep, and your overall sleep quality. 3. Keep tabs on your water intake in a measurable way like number of bottles or fluid ounces to stay hydrated.
- Pros: The post-Holidays transition back to your usual habits or New Year’s Resolutions will be much easier if you don’t go overboard with the fancy drinks, caffeine, and alcohol! 1. Keeping your caffeine intake to just the morning time can promote better sleep because relying on it later in the day can hinder your ability to fall asleep at night, even if you don’t “feel” the caffeine anymore! 2. Up to 60% of your body is made up of water and frequently replenishing your stores helps to maintain your natural energy level!
4. !Don’t Let Stress Spoil Your Holiday Spirit!
It’s no secret that as much beauty, fun, and love the Holidays can bring, stress comes along with it – a little or a lot. Whether it be due to time constraints to get things done, finances, family issues, health problems, everything 2020 has sprung on us – it’s always something, so it’s especially important to consider the tips below and TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF leading up to and throughout the Holiday season psychologically, spiritually, and physically to best manage your stress. If you let your stress build-up, it can negatively affect your spirit, mood, and relationships with everyone – including yourself!
- Make your Holiday celebration schedule in advance – however far in advance you personally need for planning purposes and to be stress-free!
- Set dates, times, and places for celebrations.
- Decide on who is bringing what entrees, side dishes, desserts, and beverages.
- Ask for help from those around you to avoid getting overwhelmed.
- If you know you get stressed about certain things around the Holidays, ask for assistance with them now to automatically relieve that pressure! Whether it be the planning, grocery shopping, decorating, cleaning, prepping of food, etc, the more you acknowledge your stressors, the easier it is to plan ahead to better manage them!
- Prune your lengthy Holiday to-do list…
- Think about what would happen if you didn’t get to every to-do and prioritize that way. If what you’re stressing over is not life or death, it’s truly not worth stressing over!
- Cross off the “things that would be nice to get done.” Let’s be honest, everything non-Holiday related can wait if you’ve already waited this long!
- Practice daily stress management techniques.
- Recognize your own temperament and what triggers irritability, stress, or other negative feelings. Find ways to manage and communicate your reactions in a healthy way. Try the 4-7-8 breath Relaxation Exercise as a quick go-to any time of day to help relieve stress and calm nerves!
- Decompress DAILY. Take at least 20 minutes to decompress in your own way – it is 100% worth it, especially during the Holidays!
- Make time to exercise!
- Aim for 30 minutes of physical activity at least 3 days per week to increase blood flow, boost your energy level, naturally relieve stress, and promote a clearer mind.
- If a consecutive workout is not an option, split it up into 10 or 15 minute increments – it’s still better than nothing!
- Cancel your clean-a-thon and just focus on necessary areas
- Downsize your dishwashing & resort to one-time use plates & utensils
5. Relieve Some Holiday Grief
We all know this year has been far from the typical year and to top it all off, how we’re celebrating the Holidays is just not the same. To offset the hurt and negative feels, take a peek at the tips below for ways to still connect with others.
- Mail or schedule door drop-off baskets with friends and family to add a special touch of spirit this year. Here are some ideas to promote health and immunity, boost mood, and reduce stress and anxiety.
- Self Development Books – hard copy or electronic, I buy and listen
- Air purifying plants like Aloe Vera, Peace Lily, Bamboo Palm
- Blue light therapy/Vitamin D lights to reduce stress, anxiety, and depression
- Foot spa/bath massager
- Essential oil diffuser and/or essential oils
- Protein powder
- PB2 Peanut Butter powder – keep the protein, cut the calories!
- Tea infuser (add picture instead of link)
- Immune boosting supplements
- Consuming whole foods is typically the best “go-to” to get the nutrition and necessary immune support to ward off illness, but supplementation is particularly helpful when foods are not an option or when treating illnesses and/or deficiencies! Since there’s an enormous selection of supplements on the market, click the link to get a few ideas that are specific to promoting cellular health and immunity.
- DIY Christmas tea tree (add picture instead of link)
- Air fryer – cut the calories of your favorite fried foods by up to 80%!
- Digital food scale
- Bent spoon recipe box with family tradition recipes – maybe toss in a few new ones to try, too!
- Instead of mailing cards:
- Create online interactive cards.
- Schedule frequent video chats and drive-by waves with friends and family to stay connected with your network. Consistent social engagement has been associated with a stronger immune system, decrease in depression, and may even lower the risk of dementia! Don’t curl up and allow the loneliness to take over, keep up with your social life for your health.
- Dive into decorations and good memories!
- If you need “busy work” to fill your mind with more positives, have fun with decorating more than usual and find relaxing DIY projects.
- Embrace good Holiday memories and share them with friends and family for good conversation.
What You Can Look Forward To…
- Lindsay’s Wellness is launching a 2021 Renewal Planner very soon! Stay tuned for details in the coming week!
- The 12 Day All Natural Cleanse is coming in January! Kickstart your health goals in a fun individual or group environment.
- Learn all there is about GUT HEALTH and how to maximize your own digestion in February to keep your body healthy and strong.
Thank you for all of the support as I have worked my way through the first phase of the path to a Clinical Doctorate. I will complete the M.S. in Nutrition and Integrative Health holding the title of Clinical Nutritionist in April. I will sit for the CNS boards after I finish my clinical hours but will be a practicing Functional Clinical Nutritionist come April 2021. This will take my Functional Women’s Health Coaching practice to the next level as I will be able to serve women in a broader scope. I will continue in the doctorate program while serving my clients. I am excited for a new year and to continue to help women Renew and Rest, Refuel and Refeed their whole body.