Thursday, December 18, 2008

Crazed for Christmas

Crazed for Christmas

My cat tried to weigh in on the subject, but I thought you would be more interested in what The Census Bureau had to say. The Labor Department Time Use Survey followed 21,000 people on their activities during an average day last year. Working women averaged about 7 hours more housework than did employed men. In households with the youngest child under 6 years of age, women spent an average of 18.9 hours in child care activities, compared to the 8.4 hours for men.

"The very word 'marriage' is so deeply associated with the idea that it involves men having to do less housework. Even the most untraditional couple will fall into it after marriage, unless they are very conscious of it. They judge themselves against this centuries-old standard of what a wife does, which they didn't have to do when they were just living together," says Stephanie Coontz, author of Marriage: A History.

Where is the weight of making this holiday a special one, the heaviest? It is in households with small children. It prompts me to ask the zen question, "Have you ever seen your boyfriend, husband or brother actually wrap a present?" I hope that some wise Labor Department groups studies the extra time women put into making the holidays merry. Until then, here are some tips so that the holidays don't flambe your day.

Five Fab Phrases To Help Your Holiday Ask.

Often women don't get help during the holidays because they don't ask.


"I need your help with _______." This will often get your guy involved.

("Help" is a word that I have had to learn, and it is very effective.) It seems to make all requests more potent.


"Are you going to make the cookies for the 13th consecutive holiday party?"

Answer: "No."

Smiling is a fine accessory to choose when saying no.

"No, but I thank you for thinking of me." When you are called a day later and asked, "Are you sure you aren't going to make the cookies for the 13th consecutive holiday party?" Everything sounds better when you are smiling.


This is a great phrase to whip out and let the folks in your life know that you need some sleep. "I'd love to sew a new Santa Claus outfit, and I need to get at least six hours of sleep tonight."

Ask Eli a question at or go to to let me know if you have ever seen the man in your life wrap a present.

Eli Davidson is a nationally recognized executive coach and motivational speaker.

Her book, "Funky to Fabulous: Surefire Success Stories for The Savvy, Sassy and Swamped", (Oak Grove Publishing) has won three national book awards.

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