Carmel Health

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Mr Milne's Guide To Surviving Christmas

With the finals (almost) over, and one semester of (good) grades already safely stored on Edline, you can now relax from the pressures of school and look forward to Christmas. Hopefully you will have time to relax, reflect, and refresh yourselves for the challenges that await you in 2011. However, Christmas can be one of the most stressful times for the family and so here is my guide to surviving the holidays. With the house full of family members, perhaps including siblings who have been away at College, it's possible that so many people packed into a confined space can cause a few frustrations. Plus, if your parents are hosting Christmas celebrations, they too might be under pressure to make this a memorable occasion so here are my tips to make things run smoothly:

  • Be aware of how others in the house are feeling. If you sense that they are stressed, ask if there is anything that you can do to help. When we do good things for other people we feel happy also, and so here is a great win-win situation for everyone.

  • Enjoy the food! Don't worry too much about possible over-indulgence. You don't want to offend the person who has prepared the food and don't feel guilty about gaining weight. Research that I read recently suggested that most people only put on 1lb at Christmas. However, I also read research that said that 10% of Americans gain 5lb in weight when you include Thanksgiving AND Christmas. I say just enjoy the food. Make healthy choices, take the low fat option if possible and enjoy the protein rich turkey!

  • Be safe! With ice and snow predicted, the roads aren't the safest of places at this time of the year. The police will be out in large numbers trying to identify those drivers who might have 'celebrated' a little too excessively so be aware of this. Be careful of other drivers, and please don't accept rides from anyone that you think might have been drinking.

  • Christmas offers you a great opportunity for reflection. Take time over the next few weeks to give thanks for all of the great things in your life. You can reflect on those who are no longer with us, and include those that are suffering in your prayers. Enjoy all that your faith has to offer you over this time of religious celebration.

  • Finally, set yourself some goals for 2011. What do you hope to accomplish over the next 12 months and how do you hope to do so? What steps can you put in place now to ensure that you are more likely to achieve these goals? Share your goals with your family and encourage them to do the same - this gives you a great opportunity to provide support for each other.

I've had a great 2010 and look forward to all that the New Year has to offer.

Have a wonderful, stress free Christmas with your friends and family!


  1. For those of you who care (or for those of you who like cross-genre curricula) here is how Benjamin Franklin (not to be confused with one Eric Franklin—though both are (were) boss) might surmise Tutor Milne’s rhetoric:
    • Point One – The rotten apple spoils his companions (from Poor Richard’s Almanac)… in retrospect, there is a Virtue (#11 – Tranquility—be not disturbed at trifles, or at accident common or unavoidable) that corresponds with this as well (from The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin.
    • Point Two – (there are two roads to take with this… I prefer both at the same time) Fools make feasts, and wise men eat them (from Poor Richard’s Almanac) & Virtue #1 – Temperance—eat not to dullness; drink not to elevation (from The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin).
    • Point Three – (again, two options…) If your head is wax, don’t walk in the sun (from Poor Richard’s Almanac) & Virtue #9 – Moderation—avoid extremes; forebear resenting injuries so much as you think they deserve (from The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin).
    • Point Four – (let’s just assume there will be one from both Poor Richard’s Almanac & The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin from now on…respectively) Dost thou love life? Then do not squander time; for that’s the stuff life is made of & (a blend of the following) Virtue #6 – Industry—Lose no time; be always employed in something useful; cut off all unnecessary actions & Virtue # Order – Let all your things have their places; let each part of your business have its time.
    • Point Five – (ah, the conclusion to it all!) Have you somewhat to do tomorrow, do it today & Virtue # 4 – Resolution—Resolve to perform what you ought; perform without fail what you resolve.

    And thus, strive to imitate the Humility (Virtue #13) of Jesus and Socrates…and let us not forget, one Eric Franklin! Whoops, I mean Benjamin Franklin…

    Happy Holidays!

  2. Don't type in Word, then paste in Comment. You will not like the results.

  3. Cheers to the author of this fine article. Yes, the holidays are a time for reflection and happiness. I myself, reflect on all of the positive pionts in my life. I am grateful for my wonderful wife, kids, relatives, and friends in my life. I cant say enough about how rich I am.

    This article makes great points on how to enjoy the holiday season. I agree with everything that was written. I will enjoy all the food I can, i will enjoy all the time with my family and friends, I will be safe as much as I can, and finally I have prepared some goals that I will share.

    1. Be a better husband. I made a pledge to my wife that she will always be number one in my life, and I need to constantly remember why I will always love her.
    2. Be a better father. I need to make strides in being a better father. Time with my kids, at times, is too short. I have to make sure that I give each of my kids their one on one time. My kids are my life, and I strive to be the best Papi I can be for my babies.
    3. Be healthier. I need to start taking care of myself. I need to become more mentally, and nutritionally healthy. I need to stop smoking and eating foods high in fat. I need to start exercising more, my mind and body.
    4. Be a better person. I need to be a better person. I want to become a better listener, a better friend. I need to focus on my environment more, I need to drive myself to be better, more positive.

    Thank you for writing this Andrew and Merry Christmas to everyone. Thank you to you and John for being such great friends, I love you both.

    The Rev