Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Tips to Stay Sane During the Holidays

Here are a few things that I do these days, to keep my sanity during the holiday season.
  1. Decorate early.
    I love my Christmas decorations, the memories that go with each ornament, the twinkle lights, garlands, etc. And growing up, that was what we did on Black Friday. As a business owner with holiday orders to print and ship, and craft shows to prepare for / participate in, waiting until after Thanksgiving is no longer an option.
    The tree went up last Sunday. The lighted garland is dead so was replaced. (And to make things even easier, I even ordered it online. Still need to go to Target for a few things though, like replacement bulbs for the pre-lit tree.)
    I also don't decorate as much as I used to. Wreath with plastic ornaments on the front door, holiday tree, lit garland in archway. Stockings for the cats, swapping out silk flowers with silk poinsettias, and a few sparkly baubles. That's about it. And scented candles, of course.
  2. Doing holiday cards? Get them done before Thanksgiving.
  3. When cooking meals, throw some leftovers into the freezer to have for busy nights.
  4. Order your stamps online.
    Big fan of ordering stamps online, and shipping hasn't been more than $2 for LOTS of stamps. Saves a trip to the post office and you won't risk hearing "Oh, we're out of that design."
  5. Wrap holiday gifts as you purchase them, and don't forget to tag them!
    I also keep a list so I don't forget what I am giving, and don't accidentally give duplicates!
  6. Divide, conquer, and plan ahead.
    If you're attending a holiday dinner at someone's house, ask early what you can bring.
    (Mom, are we doing Christmas Eve at your place or mine?)

    Hosting? Don't fear asking a guest to bring something, just do it early so that they have time to prepare.
    Want to do it all? Then plan ahead. And embrace Excel spreadsheets.
  7. Add a few appetizers to the freezer to have for last minute visitors. I used to have a bag of gougères in the freezer at all times. Easy enough to prep, they freeze wonderfully, and are fancier than they feel. Puff pastry is also good to have on hand, but right now I'm looking for more paleo-friendly items. Any suggestions?Also good to have on hand, cookie dough in freezer, hot chocolates, crackers, olives, and mixers.
  8. Don't do more than you can handle.
    I overheard, at the JLSA show, Heloise giving hints for the holidays and she says to never try out new recipes for holiday dinners, don't make things outside of your comfort zone, and you don't need three sides or three pies, just do one!
Order these holiday stamps online.
My holiday stamps this year.

Do you have tips and suggestions to make the holidays easier?

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