Why not make your Christmas stress free this year! – you in?
Most people focus on the presents, food and guests when it comes to planning Christmas – but there are so many other things to think about as well. Are you always missing a few key items come Christmas Day that would have made your life a lot easier?
That’s where this list will come in useful for you!
I’ve put together my “must-have’s” for Christmas, some are things to get, and others are just things to think about – but all should make Christmas a lot less stressful for having them in your home.
#1 – BATTERIES
Of course batteries** feature high on the list – I don’t know many homes that haven’t run out of the right sized batteries just as they are needed for new toys and games for the kids….
Don’t run low by stocking up now!
TIP – If you buy presents that will need batteries, then write down what they will need so you can ensure you have the right amount of the right size on your shopping list.
#2 – DISPOSABLE BAKING TRAYS
My little treat to myself every Christmas! (I know I know – I need to get out more ;o) )
But, joking aside, disposable baking trays** really help with the Christmas dinner because there is no soaking of trays or washing up to be done after you’ve eaten.
TIP – You could go even further and use plastic plates/cutlery and glasses when you host parties – the ultimate in easy clearing up!
#3 – EMERGENCY MEALS
You may well have planned all meals over Christmas – but what if someone turns up unexpectedly, or you have to suddenly host something?
Having an extra meal in the freezer will be a godsend if anything like this happens. Choose something that can be cooked from frozen, and that needs little “extra” bits to make a complete meal.
I like things like Lasagne and garlic bread, or cottage pie and frozen peas, or pizza – all would be happily received by people, but dead easy to put together with hardly any notice.
#4 – EMERGENCY GIFTS
Along with food for unexpected people and events – you would be wise to have a couple of extra presents wrapped and ready to give out should someone pop in that wasn’t on your list! It will save you any embarrassment should they bring something for you….
Choose a couple of gifts that would be easy to give to people – things that work well are: –
Yes, you may not need them, but should the unexpected happen you’ll thank yourself you were prepared! And, if you don’t need them then you can always give them as gifts throughout the year, or use them yourself!
#5 – SPACE IN YOUR FREEZER
There is always more food to store over Christmas – especially if you are hosting anything.
As such – start to eat out of your freezer ahead of time so that there’s room for the Christmas food once you need to buy it. You don’t want the extra hassle of having to work out how to store everything once you come back from the supermarket…
#6 – A BUDGET
A massive stress producer over this time of year is money.
Work out a budget for everything (include food, decorations, hosting, entertainment, gifts etc….) and STICK TO IT.
Yes, you may have to compromise on some things, but chances are they won’t be missed – and you will save yourself a massive bill come January…
#7 – PRE-PREPARED FOOD
Christmas cooking can be a stress – especially when you are catering for lots of people. You also want to be spending time with your guests/family and less time cooking – so what better than a little pre prepared food to take the stress away!
I love to get some pre prepared veg for our Christmas meal, as this can usually be microwaved quickly in the bag and therefore doesn’t need a saucepan and space on the hob. I also get a pre stuffed chicken crown that just has to go into the oven – no messing around!
And I have friends who have bought pre prepared food for the entire Christmas dinner before and swear by it!
Whatever level you choose – going pre-prepared for at least some of your food will be like hiring a helping hand over Christmas – and that’s a present in itself!
#8 – A PLACE TO HIDE PRESENTS…
If you don’t want your kids or your partner (!) to find their presents this year, then you need to have a plan of where you will keep them hidden away.
Think about somewhere that they won’t go – that they aren’t likely to look in, and you’ll be set! Some places I love to use are under my bed (storage beds are the best, and can’t be opened easily by little children), in the garage, in the loft (my hubby stores things up there, but he knows I will never venture there!), or even in friends/families homes close by (perfect for bulky gifts)….
TIP – Wrap presents as you buy them as well so even if they find them they won’t know what they are….
#9 – TIME
This one gets forgotten all too easily – but if you don’t give yourself (and others) time over the holidays then you’ll all get stressed which could all too easily be avoided.
- Use a monthly planner to show what you are doing and when – this will help you clearly see whether you are over booking yourselves.
- Use a Christmas meal planner to roughly know what time you need to do things on Christmas Day – and when you will be eating (there is one in my Christmas planner – along with lots of other helpful printables).
- Plan to have some down time as well – both as a family and if you can, some time for just you (a magazine and a quiet spot for an hour does wonders!)
So – there you have it – all the ingredients needed to make your Christmas stress free!
Give yourself a break and get these things all sorted ahead of time and you will save a lot of hassles and headaches over Christmas itself – and what better present could you give yourself than that!
And if you want some ways to deal with stress this Christmas then just CLICK HERE…