Family & Friends

Managing Christmas Chores So You Can Have Some Christmas Fun!

Patricia Yarberry Allen, M.D. is a Gynecologist, Director of the New York Menopause Center, Clinical Assistant Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Weill Cornell Medical College, and Assistant Attending Obstetrician and Gynecologist at New York-Presbyterian Hospital. She is a board certified fellow of the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology. Dr. Allen is also a member of the Faculty Advisory Board and the Women’s Health Director of The Weill Cornell Community Clinic (WCCC). Dr. Allen was the recipient of the 2014 American Medical Women’s Association Presidential Award.

Christmas Eve is one week from today and Christmas Day falls on a Tuesday. Christmas Eve dinner at our house will be this Friday, December 21st since that is the night that our adult children can be present making my Christmas week even shorter. Nonetheless, for those who celebrate Christmas Eve and Christmas Day on the designated  days, the Christmas work week begins officially today, with only seven days left for many women to:

1.  Buy gifts for all those people in our lives where lots of thought is required.

2.  Make a list of all the people and special organizations we want to remember with a donation or gift of cash.

3.  Create a schedule that allows us to manage the holiday meal if we are in charge: find the recipes, choose the table decorations, shop and plan the cooking times.

4.  Wrangle the family members to do their part so we are not exhausted after this special week.

There are things you can do to decrease this week’s stress:

1. Remember that sometimes it is the thought that matters and not every gift has to be unique and perfect.

2. You won’t remember every single person this Christmas who deserves to be on your thank you list but you will remember later.

3. You are unlikely to be able to donate to every organization that makes a difference in your lives or in the lives of others. Perhaps you will find time to donate in the new year, instead of money.

4. You don’t have to recreate a holiday meal from your romantic memories.  This is a case of “sometimes less is more.”  More time with family and guests and less stress.

5. You must ask for help in prep and clean up. Don’t wait for volunteers.

6.  Try to have a little fun when you are doing all the work to make Christmas nice for everyone else.  I chose a pedicab for moving down congested 5th avenue last week as a special treat.

At the heart of the Christmas celebration there is peace and hope. I wish that to each of you this week.

Dr. Pat

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