Once upon a time Christmas was nothing but excitement and presents and visits from Father Christmas… now it’s just hard work! Humph.
This weekend lots of us will frantically be sorting out last minute Christmas preparations… but there are ways to make this all easier. Hello Christmas tips.
1. The big food shop
There’s no better way to save time and money than to shop online. Many supermarket chains have done the thinking for you with suggested shopping lists and discount ideas. Once you’ve made your selection, save your shopping list to make next year even easier.
2. Easy peasy presents
If you still have Christmas shopping to do, there’s still time to order online! Take a look at these ideas for easy gifts for under a tenner. There’s a selection of gifts for girls and gifts for boys. What about the stocking fillers, we hear you say? Don’t worry, we thought of those too! Here’s a selection for under £3.
3. The wrapping paper
One of our favourite Christmas tips because it saves so much wrapping time! Don’t spend your weekend wrapping. Do away with wrapping paper this year and bulk-buy smart gift bags from pound shops and market stalls. Wrap the pressies loosely in tissue paper, pop them in the bags, and place under the tree.
4. Decorating the house
Haven’t got the tree up yet? Invite some of your children’s friends around this weekend and hold a Christmas decoration-making afternoon. Provide a few mince pies and put on a Christmas CD to get them in the festive spirit. They’ll be easily entertained.
5. Season’s greetings
Haven’t got round to sending Christmas cards? Save time, money and paper by sending online Christmas cards with a personalised message. You can still send the paper versions, but keep these for people who really appreciate them, such as elderly relatives who don’t have the internet, and long-distance friends.
6. The Christmas dinner
Christmas is about festivity and family, so don’t feel like you have to be a domestic goddess. Buy a few time-saving gravy granules, ready-made Christmas puddings and pre-peeled and chopped carrots to make Christmas dinner preparations easier. And here’s a Christmas meal plan that will help you stay on top of it all.
7. The Christmas party
If you’re responsible for organising a Christmas party this year, keep it simple. Put together some of these easy party food options, scatter dishes around the room – and let everyone pick and nibble.
8. The entertainment
Don’t panic, just delegate! Ask the most technically-minded person in your house to come up with a playlist of Christmas songs, and the biggest telly addict to highlight all the best programmes in the listings so you know when to tune in.
9. The relatives
To avoid the annual whistle-stop tour of all your friends and family, hold an ‘open house’ day instead. Prepare a few nibbles, tell your pals to bring a bottle and invite them to drop in any time throughout the afternoon. It may be an exhausting day, but it’s a good way to see everyone in a short space of time.
10. Cleaning up
Before your house is overrun with Christmas chaos, set your kids the task of tidying it. Invest in a big plastic stocking to be used as a temporary bin liner, and tell them the person who collects the most rubbish gets to eat the end of the chocolate log at tea time.
Share your Christmas tips by commenting below. Happy Christmas!