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‘Tis the season to be packing? It doesn’t have to be a blue Christmas just because you’re moving! Here are some creative ways to get in the holiday spirit, despite the flurry of packing boxes, tape, and tissue paper.

1. Have a packing party

Don’t have time to host friends for your traditional, fancy holiday feast? Try opting for something more casual instead! Order pizza or Chinese takeout, ask friends to bring a dessert or a favorite holiday drink, and make “packing” the theme of your holiday party! You could have a race to see who can pack the most boxes in 20 minutes. Or you could do a weight-lifting competition to see which person can lift the heaviest box you’ve packed so far. You could even build a fort out of broken boxes you aren’t going to use! You may get some packing done or you may not, but make it your goal to at least have fun and shed some stress.

2. Cut corners

Making adjustments to “what you usually do” will make the holidays feel festive without costing you extra time and allow you to pack items like decor, big mixing bowls, etc. For example, do you typically put up a big tree that is decked out to the max? Opt for a mini tree this year that is easy to put up and quick to pack up. Instead of making homemade cookies, go ahead and buy a tub of pre-made dough and some ready-made frosting.  It’s okay to give yourself a little break on the traditions–you can still have a festive holiday without going the whole nine yards.

3. Say “no” to social engagements, “yes” to family time

If you’re feeling crunched on time but still want to go to a few holiday gatherings, prioritize family engagements and your core family traditions. If work parties and school parties are optional, you may just want to say no to those and instead use the time to pack. This way, when it comes time to gather as a family for hot chocolate or watch the football game together, you will feel like you can.

4. Postpone celebrations

It’s tough moving around a holiday, especially if you’re used to certain traditions and activities. If you think skimping or cutting back will only make you feel worse, postponing may be a better option for you. You can focus all of your energy on packing. Then, once you are moved into your new home, you can celebrate the holiday you missed. Inevitably, this will make your new house feel like home because you’ll already be making great memories there!

Whether it’s Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year’s, or anything in between, the holidays are a tough time to move. Remind yourself that it won’t be like this every year! And try to go easy on yourself and your family as you cut back, change, or postpone activities. Who knows? You may even accidentally develop new traditions! It’s possible to both celebrate the holidays and have a successful move. You’ve got this!

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