Merry Christmas! I hope that you have a wonderful day with your family. I’ve put together a list of 11 Christmas Day hacks to ensure that you enjoy a stress-free day.
1) Keep it simple
You don’t have to cook the most elaborate Christmas dinner or buy loads of presents. Christmas is about spending time with the people you love, so cut your stress levels by keeping it simple.
2) Prep like a Christmas boss
Who wants to spend Christmas Day morning in the kitchen? Not me. So prep everything you can the night before. That includes chopping the vegetables, making Yorkshire pudding batter and making your cauliflower cheese.
You should try and wrap your gifts ahead of time too and make sure you have things like batteries to hand, because you’ll want to get the kids’ toys working straight away. Make sure you have a roll of bin bags handy too, because if you’ve spent hours cleaning the house, you won’t want it to be trashed at 7am when the kids wake up and realise that Father Christmas has been. Bin bags are handy for quickly disposing of all the disregarded wrapping paper.
3) Make sure Father Christmas leaves a stocking
If you have kids, then make sure that Father Christmas leaves a stocking in their bedroom. That way, if they wake up at an ungodly hour, they can look in their stockings and play with those bits until it’s time to get up. You don’t have to put anything elaborate in there. Think pound shop treats.
4) It’s just a roast dinner
We lose our minds over Christmas dinner don’t we? Acting like it’s the most important meal of the year, but actually it’s just a glorified roast dinner. So keep that in mind if you start stressing about how moist the turkey is.
5) Make your own rules
Nobody says you have to open presents at 10am and eat at 3pm. You make the rules, so do what’s easiest for your family.
6) It can wait
Remember that certain things can wait until the morning. Don’t stress out about putting the dishwasher on again, or clearing the table. If you want to, fine. If you don’t, wait until the morning.
7) Don’t strive for perfection
If something goes wrong on Christmas Day, then it’s not the end of the world. Take the pressure off by just aiming to enjoy what you can. It doesn’t have to be perfect.
8) Give yourself some space
Here’s the thing, not every family is a happy one. So if your brother in law gets on your nerves and you can only bear to spend an hour with him, then take yourself off for a bit.
You don’t have to spend every minute of Christmas Day with your whole family, so do what you feel comfortable with. Take some space if you need it. You might actually find that a little break helps to defuse any tension.
10) Relax and enjoy
Everybody deserves to enjoy Christmas Day, including the cook and the chief Christmas gift wrapper. So take some time in the day to relax and to enjoy the moment.
11) Instagram is not reality
Don’t compare your celebrations to everybody else’s. It might look like your old school friend has had the perfect day if you just look at her filtered Instagram images. But she probably failed to snap her kids fighting over their new toy and didn’t mention that her father-in-law had rudely complained about her cooking.
Instagram is not reality and despite appearances, the world and its dog haven’t had the most perfect Christmas imaginable.
What are your top Christmas and New Year hacks? I’d love to hear any top tips that I’ve missed.