Do you dread the holidays? Have you lost the excitement of decorating your home and buying gifts for everyone?
Once the kids are no longer little, the holidays can lose all the magic.
However, they don’t have to be stressful. There are things you can do to make things easier.
5 Ways to Beat Stress This Holiday Season
Let’s take a closer look at how to beat the stress this holiday season. Below are just five ways you can do it.
1. Start Shopping Early
One of the most stressful things about the holidays is the shopping. This is especially true if you wait until the last minute. Instead, why not start shopping now?
When you give yourself several weeks to shop, it’s easier to find the perfect gift for everyone. You can also find so many great deals on items that are on clearance, through special sales, etc.
I also find it much more enjoyable to shop from the comfort of home. With Amazon Prime, I can have items shipped quickly to the recipients and just alert them that the box coming their way is a GIFT. Don’t want them to see what it is ahead of time? Pay for gift wrapping!
Also, keep a running list of who you are buying a gift for this holiday season, what they might like including sizes for clothing, and then mark what you’ve bought and where you’ve put it. There is a whole different level of stress when you either overbuy for one person or can’t find where you stashed the gift!
2. Spread Out the Work
Many people make the mistake of shopping for their decorations, decorating, meal planning, wrapping, etc all in December. Many tasks take place during the last week.
Instead of doing everything in December, start as early as possible. For example, put up your decorations in November. If you started shopping early, wrap the gifts starting the day after Thanksgiving.
You can also plan your menu in November as well. Busy days may mean that the crock pot or pressure cooker will become your new best friend.
Remember that the more you spread things out, the less stressful things will be.Remember that the more you spread things out, the less stressful things will be. @LauraOinAKClick To Tweet
3. Host a Potluck Dinner
If you’re the one that’s in charge of a holiday dinner, host it potluck style. You can take care of the turkey and ham and then ask guests to bring a side dish, dessert, or drinks. This takes so much pressure off preparing the perfect meal.
The same can be true for any holiday gathering you might be planning. You’d be amazed at how generous people can be.
When we lived in Ohio, we often celebrated major holidays with my husband’s extended family. The hostess always let you know what dish or drink to bring for the festivities. Usually, we had the kitchen counter lined with slow cookers to keep everything warm for serving. One Christmas Eve was at his aunt’s where she had plywood across the pool table for a large serving spot.
One of my favorites for a potluck holiday party?
Cook up a large batch of Cincinnati Chili. Keep it warm in a crockpot and do the same with cooked pasta. Use a divided container to house all the toppings. Then invite your guests to bring a side or dessert!
4. Make and Freeze Candy and Cookie Dough
You don’t have to make everything fresh. So many people spend hours and hours baking during the week of Christmas.
Instead of doing that, why not make candy and cookie dough and freeze it?
This allows you to start the first week of December and have all your candy made and the cookie dough ready to bake. Then you can pull it all out during the week of Christmas.
A personal favorite cookie for the holidays is the Snickerdoodle. My husband loves when I use almond extract instead of vanilla.
You don’t have to do everything yourself. Your husband can run to the grocery store for last minute ingredients and can help wrap presents. If your kids are still living at home, they can help clean the house for guests, decorate the house, etc.
The holidays don’t have to be stressful. There are so many things you can do to make things go smoothly. Whether you start shopping early or delegate certain tasks, you can beat the stress this holiday season.
What are some ways you are easing the stress of the holiday season in your house?