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Parenting Fails: 7 Ways to Make the Holidays Miserable

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Taking On Too Much

So you want to bring treats to your child's class while sewing your own stockings and shopping for your entire family, but in the end, something's gotta give. You're stuck with a to-do list that leaves little time for you to kick back and enjoy the season. Genius coping tool? Delegate some of your responsibilities to your little one. Nothing makes a kid feel more important than being needed as part of the team, adolescent psychologist Fran Walfish notes. "Let her set the table or allow him to bring the dirty dishes to the kitchen. Find ways to engage your kids, teaching responsibility and building their self-esteem with the pride of accomplishment." As an added bonus, you'll lighten your own load too.