family at airportWith traveling to visit relatives, preparing meals, buying gifts and dealing with crazy families, the holidays can be stressful. During our Nov. 14 #TMOM Monday Twitter Party, we shared our best and worst holiday stories, how a spreadsheet can make holiday planning easier and how we can be more thankful travelers. Check out this advice for staying calm around family, remembering that the season is about family, friends and being thankful for what we have.

 

How do you prepare for the holidays?

 

@annedoggett: I start my shopping early, sometimes right after Christmas, and take advantage of sales!

 

@judy511: I’ve already made vegetable stock and my college kids’ favorite baked goods (all frozen).

 

@candyland0606: I buy early! I’ve got my turkeys and hams, now on to making cornbread for the dressing!

 

@TaniaRealtor: Prep for the holidays by organizing my house and keeping track of everything on a spreadsheet (only way I can remember what to do!)

 

And then there’s the more laid back approach…

 

@thegeekwife: First, not stressing over every detail, and second remembering the reason for the season.

 

@ionMyAdventures: Go with the flow…it’s all good!

 

@CarissaRogers: Used to have all ready and done by Dec 1st, two b-days, Christmas EVERYTHING. Now? Mail Order. Amen

 

What’s your best advice for sane holidays with the family?

 

@mellanhead: Take deep breaths, and remember it is one day. Also have a cocktail or two.

 

@tiffany053p: Have plenty of games for the kids to play, TV for the guys to watch sports, and drinks for the ladies!

 

@misaacmom: Keep the food coming, and everyone will be happy!

 

@mimitravelz: Go with the flow. Thanksgiving is relaxing. Christmas gets hectic with gift-buying. Amazon makes shopping easy.

 

We also have some less conventional tips for dealing with the crazy family…

 

duct-tape-rolls@kimorlando: Use duct tape.

@judy511: Quality wine.

 

@M4B1G: Leave them at home…lol couldn’t resist.

 

Share your best or worst family holiday story.

 

@candyland0606: Turkeys were supposed to be smoked by inexperienced smoker; came out raw, rotten, and with bag ‘o guts still inside.

 

@DebMomOf3: Definitely when we got stuck in snow on way to inlaws for Thanksgiving – TWICE! Hubby & FIL missed dinner digging us out.

 

@annedoggett: Best & worst: My worst was when I was 19 and my mom died a couple of days after, best all of the rest of them.

 

There were great memories to be shared as well…

 

@MOM4EVEREVER: Best holiday was last year. we were moving and still went and volunteered at the shelter. Kids had a blast.

 

@msmary1962: The year we rented a cabin and “camped” for Christmas, and everyone came and ate with us there.

 

@seemummyjuggle: Best Christmas was year my first daughter was born end of November. It was magic. Same with my second.

 

@kimorlando: We skipped connecting flight and dinner and saw Cowboys game in Dallas.

 

@ionMyAdventures: Spent one Christmas morning opening stockings on Pismo Beach – love that memory!

 

Have you had a Thanksgiving dinner disaster?

 

thanksgiving@bikeohio: A disaster? How about a turkey in the oven when the oven decides to clean itself and go into lockdown?

 

@misaacmom: One year I could not get the turkey to cook – had to scrap the entire thing.

 

@mimitravelz: 1 of 2 bathrooms wasn’t working = 6 adults and 5 kids had to share 1 bathroom. Yikes.

 

@judy511: In college, roomie put turkey on balcony, and it froze.

 

@4hatsandfrugal: Our only disaster so far has been when our aunt went out of town for the holiday, and we had to eat at a buffet 🙁

 

@didyouyarnthat: No disasters but I missed one cooked by my chef BIL one year cuz we got unexpected huge snowstorm. Still regret it!

 

What travel-related thing are you most thankful for?

 

@MOM4EVEREVER: I am thankful for 24 hour gas stations with clean potties

 

@simplyandreah: Not totally travel related but I especially love my iPhone when I’m traveling.

 

@DreamFog: Headphones.

 

@bhaley9962: I’m thankful I am within driving distance to all my family. No hectic airports.

 

@inkscrblr: Melatonin. Being honest here. Gravol. Immodium. Secrets of successful travel.

 

@judy511: Zipcar.

 

@ChaCha572: My GPS – Saves my nerves.

 

How can you be a more thankful traveler?

 

@CindyRichards: Turn off your phone, camera, iPod, and really pay attention to and appreciate what’s around you wherever you are.

 

@misaacmom: Knowing that you have something or someone to travel for!

 

@judy511: If a flight attendant goes out of her way, thank her.

 

@thegeekwife: Be kind to those that work in facilities on holidays to keep you safe, don’t litter our highways and cherish our environment.

 

@4hatsandfrugal: By accepting what may come…traffic, diaper blowouts – it’s all part of the travel game.

 

@ChaCha572v2: Be thankful for people who are still welcoming to tourists and travelers.

 

Join us next Monday for another fabulous Monday Night TravelingMom Twitter Party!