If you’re like most people, you’re probably feeling a little stressed about the holiday season. And this is understandable, since there’s so much to remember!
Along with buying presents, putting on Christmas dinner, and visiting friends and family, you often have to deal with family drama, and remember that great uncle John can’t be seated next to aunt Tracy or they’ll bicker all day, and sometimes even have to have multiple celebrations due to friends and family being out of town or having conflicting schedules.
With that said, it’s no wonder why most people cringe at the thought of the holidays, and whine that it seems like they come earlier and earlier every year. But if you’re smart, you can reduce the stress and ensure that your holidays go more smoothly than ever, allowing you to enjoy the holiday season and relax with a nice glass of wine in your hand.
Here are some ways you can make the holidays easier this year:
Buy gifts in advance
There’s nothing worse than being that person who is wandering wide-eyed and aimlessly through the mall on Christmas Eve. And no matter how many times we promise ourselves we’ll do better this year, we always seem to be in a rush at the last minute.
The best idea is to set up a schedule so you can ensure that you’re getting everything done, without feeling like Christmas is taking over your life. In the weeks leading up to Christmas (say October and November), commit to buying a gift for one person each weekend. You may even find that while you’re shopping for one person, you find something perfect for another at the same time, and end up finished with your Christmas shopping even earlier than anticipated.
Breaking the task down into small chunks makes it far more manageable, and it’s easier to shop for 10 people over 10 weeks than it is to do it over 2.
Stock up on fillers
The beauty of stocking fillers is that you can get a wide range of toys and novelty items for a tiny price. Choose cheap stocking fillers which can be gifted to a range of different people, since you’re bound to have an extra person or two visit over the season, and then you’ll have a small gift which is ready to go.
Half the fun of stocking fillers is tipping the stocking out and seeing a range of different gifts, so try and personalise them for each person and throw in a few funny presents as well.
Get your groceries sorted early
Around Christmas, supermarkets become an exercise in patience, and even the most level-headed person can end up throwing a temper tantrum when someone cuts in front of them for the 4th time. The answer? Do as much as you can before the holiday season and you’ll be toasting to your own genius on kitchen day.
Order a Christmas hamper, or pre-order your Christmas turkey, chicken or ham so you’ve got one less thing to worry about.