Present lists longer than the average novels, decorations that you need to replace and the entire family coming to yours for the big dinner, it can be quite a stressful – and expensive – time for most! But preparing ahead of the big event can save you from spending hundreds of pounds (or dollars) on things that you could’ve got a better deal for!
Writing out the To-Do Lists
Whether it’s a week or a month before the big day, it’s always better to be organised so you don’t miss out a present or a main ingredient for the meal. When writing to-do lists, it wouldn’t hurt to find out the average price of each item. Websites like Tesco.com have price checker applications that allow you to compare prices and offers on their website, so you can make sure you are getting value for your money.
Set yourself an acceptable budget for this, depending on the amount of people you have to cater and shop for, it can range from anything as little as £30 to anything above £150. Just make sure the budget you set will allow you to get everything you need without putting yourself in an unnecessary amount of debt.
Buy gifts and Decorations in Advance
Nobody wants to be wandering around the shopping centres a week before Christmas, having to battle through the crowds of people desperately trying to do things last minute. Plan out the decorations before you start, like what you’ll need, what rooms you’re going to decorate, is anything going to be outside this year?
Thanks to the miracle of online shopping, you can also easily compare prices to make sure you’re getting the best deals. If you have the time to go out and shop, plan your route and, if possible, check ahead to make sure the things you need are in stock (Argos.co.uk allows you to reserve items before you get to the shop).
Preparing the meals
Always make sure you have enough for everyone attending your Christmas. If you buy more than you need, don’t worry! It can be used for the meal after Christmas or in lunch time sandwiches, or even as little snacks through the day. There are plenty of little homemade things you can make and bake for the day, like Christmas cookies or even your own home made traditional Christmas pudding. There are plenty of different recipes available, even some alternatives to the Christmas roast!
Organise your own little workers
If you have kids, get them to help you! Make it a little game so they can wrap presents (obviously not their own), write out the cards and stick them in the envelopes. Let them help out with the decorations too, even making their own out of cardboard, paints and glitter- sometimes homemade decorations are the best ones. If you don’t have kids, then get your partner or friends to help! Make a day out of it with lots of Christmas treats, warm drinks for the cold season and some Christmas music to get you into the spirit of things!
Just remember, Christmas is meant to be a time for celebration, festivities and family, there’s no need to stress yourself out about one day of the year! Keep organised, and get yourself a list, and everything will go smoothly on the big day.