The Christmas Social Media Parent Pressure

 

Today on my social media timelines I have seen lots of photos of Elf on the Shelf elves getting up to all sorts of mischief and people giving their children a special ‘advent breakfast’.

 

Instagram Perfect

 

Firstly ‘advent breakfast’?! Is that actually a thing now? Which is fine and lovely, making happy memories and traditions with your children is amazing however you choose to do it.

 

As for the elf on the shelf – I personally find the elf a bit creepy and smug looking … I swear that creepy little guy follows you with his eyes. I think I am very much in the minority with that though.

 

I do kind of get why people like it and I suspect finding new hiding places and random activities for the elf to be doing is probably pretty hilarious and fun.  If the boys were younger and I could find a less creepy looking elf that, then I expect I may have even joined in.

 

There are some pretty amazing home-made advent calendars being shared too, that people have put so much effort into. Plus the book advents where people have somehow found the time and patience to wrap 24 books up.

 

Then there’s the other side of it. The parents I am seeing online, who are feeling actual guilt because they haven’t bought an elf, they haven’t Pinterested their way to the perfect home-made advent calendar or gotten up at the crack of dawn to cook their children pancakes in the shape of a reindeer.

 

Now to me Christmas is about family time, it isn’t about putting a lot of stress and excess levels of guilt upon yourself for not giving your child an Instagram perfect Christmas and advent. If your Christmas tree looks like ours will when it goes up, like someone emptied a bag of glittery crap on the tree and then got bored halfway through decorating it, then seriously relax.

 

These Instagram and Pinterest perfect homes are probably nowhere near as perfect as they look. If they’re anything like me, then they’ve cleared one corner in their disgustingly messy house to look vaguely like they have their act together. Si has renamed cobwebs as Blogwebs in our house.

 

The advents and elves and advent breakfasts… yes if you want to do them then do them, seriously Christmas binge all you want. However, if you don’t want to do all of that stuff or have no time as you barely have time to brush your hair each day… don’t do it. Don’t feel such pressure that you lose sleep and stay up til 2am cursing that your gingerbread house keeps falling apart or your ‘effortless’ home-made advent calendar is actually the craft project from hell.

 

Do Christmas your way. Mum/Dad guilt is prevalent enough during the rest of the year, at least give yourself ruddy Christmas off!

 

Alternatively buy gin*, a lot of gin. (*insert whatever alcoholic tipple you want)

 

Stevie x

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16 Comments

  1. 1 December 2017 / 2:45 pm

    Yep I’m in the gin for Christmas club! Had no idea an advent breakfast was a thing until today and I hate that flipping elf!
    Nat.x

    • 1 December 2017 / 2:48 pm

      Yes!! I’m glad it isn’t just me ha! Same here with the advent breakfast and if it’s a new ‘thing’ this year, next year it’ll be EVERYWHERE. I love how involved people get with Christmas and I enjoy the photos etc but Christmas to me is meant to be chilled out, relaxing and family time over anything else. Plus ALL the food of course and gin ;) I’m a gin convert these days.

      Stevie x

  2. 1 December 2017 / 3:05 pm

    Amen to that! I’m so grateful that my kids are a bit old for these new ‘traditions’ that seem to have sprung up out of nowhere and that they don’t have Pinterest to see what they’re ‘missing out’ on. Our Christmas is just our Christmas. It’s not beautiful, but it’s perfect for us.

    • 1 December 2017 / 3:07 pm

      Which is exactly what it should be, your Christmas exactly how you want it whether that’s Pinterest perfect or more like my sort of Christmas ha ;)

      Stevie x

  3. Laura @ Dot Makes 4
    1 December 2017 / 4:03 pm

    Yes, this!
    Christmas is a time when you get together with family and friends and do Christmas your own way. Mine is always messy and chaotic and not what you could call ‘social media standard’, but I love it! Perfect to me :)

    Also, I agree with you…the Elf on the Shelf is creepy!
    Xx

    • 1 December 2017 / 6:47 pm

      Ha it really is! And yep definitely lovely, your perfect Christmas is the one that you want not the one that you think you should want :)

      Stevie xx

  4. 1 December 2017 / 4:50 pm

    I totally agree. I tried elf on the shelf a few years ago and gave up after 3 days ;)
    If you want to make yourself feel better, look at my sm feed.
    Christmas isn’t perfection and I like it that way. It’s like when people compare presents. Who cares? Buy what you want for who you want and don’t compare to other people.
    Fab post

    • 1 December 2017 / 8:36 pm

      Thank you :) exactly just do what you want to do and let everyone else do what they want to do. People put way too much pressure on themselves to try and compete/compare with others or to just try and be perfect. I like my Christmas with as little stress as possible :)

      Stevie x

  5. Rachael Arnold
    1 December 2017 / 7:33 pm

    Wow. Never heard of advent breakfast. Although my children are grown up I know for a fact that my grandson isn’t treated to these fancy breakfasts. My daughter and son in law also do not believe in the elf on a shelf business. As you say do what makes you happy. An elf being naughty is not their cup of tea. They much prefer to spend time with their son (well as much as they can give) and do special activities. He is only 2 so no doubt in a couple more years he will be asking for an elf.
    I say so long as you and yours are happy at Christmas (and all year round ) then that is what matters. Be it with our without these ideas that have popped up lately.
    And yes I also do not have the perfect house. I always have to crop my images to remove some background mess!
    Hope you all have a wonderful Xmas. X

    • 1 December 2017 / 8:37 pm

      I hope you have a wonderful one too and yes exactly in my opinion being happy is the main thing for any family :)

      Stevie x

  6. 1 December 2017 / 7:56 pm

    Yes to all of this. I hate seeing people getting sucked in when they are already feeling so under pressure at this time of year. I am also glad mine are older now, but when they were younger I did things like stop sending Christmas cards to make things easier for myself (I still don’t send them). I am all for making Christmas as easy as possible. And yes don’t get me started on the creepy elf x

    • 1 December 2017 / 9:04 pm

      I think things were much easier before Instagram and Pinterest and Facebook … I feel old saying it but I remember when Fin was a baby someone telling me about this new thing Facebook and me laughing at what a weird idea it was ha! Seriously though since people mostly put the good bits of their lives on there and the good angles of their house etc etc it just makes some people feel so inadequate and rubbish and I HATE that that’s now affecting some people’s enjoyment of Christmas. Seriously Christmas is meant to be full on happy, not stressful, not a military mission to organise – unless that’s what makes you happy ha!

      Stevie x

  7. 2 December 2017 / 10:26 pm

    Love this post – some years I think maybe I should co-ordinate my tree a little, make a little more effort for it all to be a little more ‘picture perfect’ but my girls love decorating it and yes it may look a little ‘tacky’ and well crazy – but I don’t care. It is us!!!

    No elf on the shelf here either – I know I would regret it as soon as I started it!!!

    • 2 December 2017 / 11:17 pm

      Thanks lovely x Ha we put our tree up today and it has baubles of all different sizes and colours, ones we’ve bought on holidays etc and random crafty Christmas bits the boys made when they were small all over it. Our tree makes me smile because it’s decorated for us, not for Instagram etc ;) It suits us, messy and far from perfect, but full of love.

      Stevie x

  8. Christine
    7 December 2017 / 2:25 pm

    Haha I have just found your blog!. I am a mum and grandmum living in Cornwall. What you say all makes sense and close to my heart. Christmas to me is the flurry of flour for mince pies. Homemade cards and decorations, scents of all sorts erupting from the kitchen and sharing an extended dinner with lots of laughter. I always think immaculate houses are sad and rigid houses. Btw I’ve no idea what elf on the shelf is!

  9. 9 December 2017 / 7:50 pm

    I couldn’t agree with you more. Do Christmas your unique way don’t follow like a sheep, We had an elf on the shelf that quickly took residence in the girls room and didn’t come out and do naughty things set up by us and as for the advent calendar on day one it got took apart by my eldest! Fortunately it didn’t contain chocolate.

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