How to recover from the holiday high? Hashtag: nyeta (LOL)
I had some serious separation anxiety with our Christmas tree this year. Usually, we take down the tree even before New Year’s Eve but somehow, it was hard to pack away the decors this time. Maybe because the holidays were extra fun with the family especially at night when we all got cozy in the family room with the cool (ish) weather in Manila.
It’s back to normal at home—Aryanna is busy again with college, MTV and some of her pending projects. Dylan’s schedule is also packed with school, soccer and lots of playtime activities while Tom is preoccupied with his fine art photography, working on his commissions and improving his website. I’m busy as usual with blog projects, shoots and finalizing my new biz with my daughter. In other words, family time will be scarce. The only time we can all be together is at night and even then, some of us still have to work on projects, homework and at the same time give Dylan attention because he is high maintenance!
Here’s what I’ve been doing to make evenings better with the Epperson’s:
Make dinner easy yet special. After a day’s work, the last thing you want to do is slave in the kitchen. I make a one-pot meal (or ask your helper to cook for you) that’s easy and yummy for the whole family to enjoy. Nothing beats the smell of homecooked food to welcome home the family.
If you’re single, same banana, homecooked meals allow you to sharpen your cooking skills plus, it’s healthier than buying takeout or eating out.
Set the table. It takes very little effort to make meals special. A simple tablescape can elevate any meal. If you’re too busy to prepare it yourself, teach your house staff to arrange the dining table. If it’s too much work, at least use beautiful tableware. Ilabas ang plato-platuhan, ate!
Light a scented candle in the family/living room. This will instantly put you and the whole family into a relaxed state. Aromas can trigger memories and influence behavior. It’s amazing how light can positively affect humans. Again, be sure to set an alarm (usually 2-3 hours depending on the candle) when to put out the flame.
Shit, shower & shave. Get refreshed before relaxing. No amount of scented candles can mask the smell of a day’s work.
Digital detox. More and more, parents (sometimes, children too) are losing their patience with bad manners due to the misuse of technology at home. After dinner, resist the urge to immediately watch tv or be on your gadgets (may I suggest playing game boards or engage in just good ol’ conversation). A short but sweet digital detox can do wonders!
Listen to soothing music. Bust out the turn table and play the Classics or download some “Relaxing Music” playlist on Spotify. Fill the room with the sound of heavenly tunes. It’s life-changing!
If your kids can’t relate to the your music just put on headphones and roll your eyeballs at them, haha!
Get cozy. All it takes is a clean and organized space at home to relax everyone. I have a cool Sutter Chest Coffee Table from Philux where I store Dylan’s toys and other clutter in the family room. I just dump it all inside the chest at the end of the day and the room looks pristine.
We also love watching tv and movies at night so I make sure that our sofa is comfy with lots of throw pillows and a light throw or blanket for that one lamigin (someone who easily gets cold) family member (aka Aryanna).
End each day on a positive note. Take charge of how you feel by taking steps in having a relaxing and fun evening.