Other traveling moms share their tips for staying sane during the holidays.
Keeping your plan and shopping/errand checklists handy — whether by blackberry or even a paper organizer — lets you take advantage of every odd minute so you can schedule more family time. I also carry a few items of personal business in my purse at all times in order to take advantage of odd moments (standing in line, waiting for a plane) to pay bills, write a personal note, review an insurance policy. — Anne Cipolla
Plan A, B and C. Also remember the spiked egg nog! ‘Tis the season. — Lisa Koetter
Best thing to do, don’t panic, don’t feel guilty, get help, and be home when you are home so your family has your undivided attention. Make it fun for your family when you are back from your business trip so they are waiting for you with open arms. One year, my brother rented a karaoke machine and it’s now a tradition. If for some reason you cannot be there that special night, plan a special event for the following day so everybody can be together. We now have a “family going to the movies event” on Dec. 25 for those who missed the night before. — Hortencia Banuelos
Having lived through countless holiday seasons on the road, my suggestions are:
1. Keep the season simple. Discuss with your family the essential activities.
2. Shop online and have the gifts delivered to a neighbor or good friend.
3. Delegate to your family members. My biggest mistake was trying to do it all myself! Even the youngest members in the family can help out with decorating, card writing, and whatever.
4. Pick a day of the week to check in with everyone. One year, we even had a Christmas Job Board hanging in the kitchen and as tasks were completed the kids got a big kick out of checking them off or reporting to me when I got home that they did their job!
5. Start planning early. Thanksgiving is a great time to talk about the holiday season coming up and what everyone wants to have happen. If you have traditional family events, traditional baking, religious events, whatever it happens to be, break them down into manageable “chunks.” That way YOU can enjoy the season, too!! — Pamela Schmidt-Cavaliero