Christmas

Decrease Holiday Stress- Watch Your Spending

Decrease Holiday Stress- Watch Your Spending

This week, we have shared some really helpful tips so far in ways to decrease Holiday stress, which helps each of us to enjoy the Holiday season better.  Today I'm going to go over ways we can continue the tradition of giving during the holiday season without stressing ourselves and our bank accounts. 

Decrease Holiday Stress- Emotional Boundaries

 Decrease Holiday Stress- Emotional Boundaries

Clients tell me all the time, “I hate the holidays”. There are many stressors as people are attending family gatherings and trying to meet everyone’s expectations for the season. We hope reading this week helps you stay focused on making this holiday season less stressful! Keep your emotional boundaries firm

Christmas Through the Eyes of a 2 Year-Old

Christmas Through the Eyes of a 2 Year-Old

If you’re like me, Christmas is your favorite time of the year—the decorations, the presents, time with family—and the image in your mind of everything going perfectly!  This week at Imagine Hope we are continuing to talk about how Christmas looks through your child’s eyes.  Today I will be talking about 2 year olds, and how to have appropriate expectations for them this holiday season.

Christmas Through the Eyes of an Infant

Christmas Through the Eyes of an Infant

It is Christmas Time! Trees are going up. Lights are being put out. Gifts lists are being made. Traditions are being upheld. This time of year can be a magical time for people of all ages, but have you ever wondered about how kids of different stages look at Christmas? This week we will break it down by ages so you can make sure you have appropriate expectations for your kid's.

How to Enjoy Your Christmas Break - Relax

How to Enjoy Your Christmas Break - Relax

Can you believe it’s December already? Christmas will be here in a few weeks and so will Christmas break. We hope all our readers take advantage of this time to be intentional about planning for and enjoying their break. This week we came up with several ideas that you can do as an individual or family over your break.

Decrease Holiday Stress-Part 4

Decrease Holiday Stress-Part 4

Teri, Tammy and Natalie have shared some really helpful tips so far in ways to decrease Holiday stress, which helps each of us to enjoy the Holiday season better.  Today I'm going to go over ways we can continue the tradition of giving during the holiday season without stressing ourselves and our bank accounts.  Tip number 4 is to watch your spending. 

Christmas Gifts that say “I Get You” - Part 1

 Christmas Gifts that say “I Get You” - Part 1

Christmas is coming up and many feel pressure to find the “perfect” gift. This week Imagine Hope is giving you tips on what to give based on your partner’s love language. There is a great book that helps couples examine which love languages they speak: The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman.

Joleens Favorite Christmas Memory

Christmas-time always brings up pleasant (and sometimes not-so-pleasant!) memories of growing up and celebrating the Holidays with my family.  One of my favorite memories from growing up is from when I was about 7.  My Grandfather on my mom's side of the family ("Grampie"), used to dress up like Santa Clause.  Every Christmas, Grampie would leave (little did we know... he was leaving to go change into his Santa costume because HE was Santa!), and not too long after he was gone, we would hear sleigh bells (little did we know... it was GRAMMIE who was ringing them outside of the back door!), and Santa would arrive.  That year, Grampie had a play microphone in his bag of toys for both my sister and I.  I remember later that evening, dancing around the living room with my sister and my Dad, singing at the top of our lungs to the radio (actually, I think it was probably a record... ha ha) and our new microphone, passing the microphone back and forth as we acted like "stars" on stage (with my Mom laughing with us in joy).  This memory is so fond to me because it is a memory of being completely carefree as a child, feeling the full presence of quality time with my Dad, sister and family.  Christmas was his all time favorite holiday, and he was all to happy to share his inner child through play with my sister and I.  My memory isn't of a gift or expensive present I received, but a memory of quality time when I felt the full presence of my family, as they helped instill in both my sister and I the true meaning of Christmas... spending time with family in celebration.  May your Christmas with your family and friends truly be a blessed one, full of love and good memories! Joleen Watson, MS, NCC, is a therapist at Imagine Hope Counseling Group. She enjoys doing marriage counseling, relationship counseling, couples counseling, and individual counseling.  Imagine Hope also specializes in family, child and adolescent counseling and serves Indianapolis area including the surrounding areas of Carmel, Noblesville, Zionsville, Westfield, and Fishers.

Natalie's Favorite Christmas Memory

I love everything about Christmas- the meaning, the giving, the lights and trees. Most people seem "different" this one time of year. But for me, my fondest memory among many is when I was probably 4 or 5 years old. I shared a bedroom with my older sister Stephanie, then probably 7 or 8. One of our friends had told us that he actually SAW Santa last year in the sky! (We later found out he was a pathological liar- literally!) So my sister and I decided we were going to wait up all night and see him ourselves. I remember listening to my little AM radio (Oh I am aging myself!!) and hearing "Grandma got ran over by a reindeer" for the first time! We couldn't believe someone would write such a song! Then we saw some twinkling red lights in the sky!! Was it him??? It stayed at a distance and moved past us in the sky. We were sad- it was just an airplane! We stayed up as late as our little bodies would allow us. We never saw him....  But we had fun waiting up! And in the morning a pink Big Wheel with flowers on it was waiting for me! I hope you remember and create many Christmas memories this year. Have a wonderful Christmas and our best to your New Year!!

Natalie Chandler, MA, LMHC, LCAC is a therapist at Imagine Hope Counseling Group. Natalie enjoys doing marriage counseling, individual counseling, and couples counseling.  We also specialize in family counseling, child, and adolescent counseling. Imagine Hope serves the Indianapolis area including the surrounding areas of Carmel, Fishers, Noblesville, Westfield, and Zionsville.

Tamara's Favorite Christmas Memory

When we decided to do this blog, the first memory that came to mind was when my brother and I got our 10-speed bicycles from Santa. I was 10 years old, and he was 8 years old (I have another brother, but that was still a few years down the road...). It was tradition for us leave Christmas cookies/Eggnog for Santa and carrots for the reindeer in the kitchen, and Santa would in turn leave our presents unwrapped in our living room in front of the TV. We had a good system going! But not this year....

When my brother and I came down the stairs with excitement to turn into the living room to see what wonderful presents Santa had left, we saw NOTHING. Nada, zip, zilch. We were stunned. Actually, I was deflated. My dad, who always called Santa, "That Old Bird", just played it up talking about how "That Old Bird must have lost his mind for good this time & forgotten what he was doing last night."

I'm not sure if my brother had already moved past the fact that Santa left nothing, or if he was just ready to tear into the wrapped presents, but I couldn't press forward. I just knew there was no way Santa FORGOT about me. So, off to the kitchen I went to see if he took MY cookies that I left him, while leaving me with nothing.

And there they were! Two red 10-speed bicycles parked in the kitchen. I started screaming and jumping up and down. "They're in here! They're in here!" And, it was an unusually warm Christmas that year too, so we got to ride our bicycles that day. I'll never forget the Christmas that Santa changed the rules on us. Merry Christmas to all the Santa's and Elf's out there, from my family to yours!

Written by: Tamara Portee MA LMHC LCAC

*Tamara enjoys doing marriage counseling, individual counseling, & couples counseling at Imagine Hope. We also specialize in family counseling, child & adolescent counseling. Imagine Hope serves the Indianapolis area, including the surrounding areas of Carmel, Noblesville, Zionsville, Westfield & Fishers.