We’ve all heard it and we KNOW this time of year can be taxing, physically and also mentally; our social anxieties creep their way out as we trudge from the office party to the family meals, to the church events- it can all get a little trops. But, don’t you worry about a thang, because RnR got you! Here are our tips on how to sleigh this Christmas! We even share some tried and true family recipes we have become “pros” with, read along!
When you’re in the zone and cranking out all your Christmas meals, the house and your clothes can smell of food; this can be somewhat annoying if you’re also entertaining guests. One of the things we’ve always loved is to light some candles or spray a room scent, but the last few years we’ve found a much easier solution, also using ingredients which are synonymous with Christmas- honestly if it could be bottled-THIS is Christmas’ smell! It’s also far more eco-friendly, as you can use scraps from fruits you usually will be using this time of the year and the spices are pantry staples! In our family, as soon as Thanksgiving comes around, this is when we pull this water potpourri out! It’ll soon become a staple for you as well!
Fill a pot up with water and any combo of these ingredients: clove, cinnamon, star anise, apple or orange peel, and nutmeg. Let is boil away! It will scent the room quite quickly, you can let it boil on low for as long as you’d like, just keep topping up the water so it doesn’t burn.
- Breathe: No, really take a breath, ask yourself who is this display of “perfection” really for? What will people remember most about your gathering? Yea, it won’t be how perfectly laid out the table setting was, even if you will get compliments- Christmas is all about family, love and the time spent with the people we care about and sometimes the people who drive us crazy; don’t lose time sweating the small stuff. Not knocking a nice laid out table setting (trust me, I have a Pinterest board dedicated to it), but sometimes you just have to let things fall where they may because life is far too short.
- Make a list: That being said, if you are the one doing the cooking this Christmas, start by keeping yourself organised, so as to avoid getting overwhelmed with the task at hand. List everything you need to buy; ingredients, decorations some of those little extra things that you don’t really need (little touches), but REALLY want 😂. Making a list also allows you to keep track of which meals will need to be cooked and arranged 1st.
- Take in your surroundings: Perhaps this ties in with our first suggestion but it’s definitely the most important mantra for the day. We’re not always going to have tonnes of Christmas’ together, as sombre as that may sound, but more along the lines of growing up, expanding one’s family and inner circle. So, take the time- stop and just take in the high spirits and company, Lord knows we will need to keep those vibes for later in the year when times get a little tough. Just put on some music and enjoy all of it, especially the things that go wrong! 😄
- Start Ahead: As much as we all want to be Martha Stewarts, it’s not gonna happen and trust me Martha cheats and starts ahead. 😉 If there are items you can cook/prep ahead and freeze (desserts are perfect for this) then get ahead of the game and do so! That way on the day all you’ll have to do is simply cook/bake it.
- Enlist Help: We’re one of those people who feel bad to enlist help, but sometimes it’s important, especially if you are feeling the pressure, you can make it fun and stock up on drinks and snacks, trust me- they will come! Last year, my SIL (sister-in-law) had a girls night where we all came over, brought a recipe, ingredients and drinks- we all prepped and cooked some Christmas desserts. It was not only a lovely night, catching up and chatting, but we managed to crank about 15 desserts that night!
Christmas is a time of joy, fellowship and love, I know that we can all get swept up in the allure of having the Pinterest perfect spread and ace being a hostess with the mostest, but sometimes we need to rein it in and get back to the basics. Don’t let the holidays get overwhelming- make it about the things that matter.