Isn’t it funny how the year-end holidays have a way of sneaking up on us each year (even when they occur on the exact same date)? The holiday decorations show up in the store while we are still in shorts and flip-flops, and before we know it, we are fully immersed in the most wonderful time of year. High Point Events has put together some planning tips to help you make the most of this frantic, yet festive, time of the year.
Consider creating a holiday binder
Set aside a special binder or notebook just for the holidays. Denote one section each for cleaning duties, home improvement, holiday prep, gift lists, recipes and a calendar of events – or whatever else you need to break down into manageable chunks for the season. Having everything that needs to be done and kept track of in one convenient place will help you to stay on track and keep your sanity. For the really organized holiday, include a calendar or timeline with each section.
It’s a wrap
Make your wrapping station work for you! While some people prefer a formal wrapping station, like this, others like to have a mobile option that allows for convenient wrapping at the kitchen table, in front of the television, or in any other area of your choosing. Keeping everything in one central location makes it easier to take care of wrapping when you have a few minutes while also allowing you to keep track of your supplies. Consider purchasing only one or two styles of wrapping paper and other decorations to keep it simple. Your “signature wrapping style” will make it easy to identify your presents-to-give and will make your purchasing and use of supplies easy!
Stock up and make ahead.
Take advantage of sales and less crowded stores before the holidays, and stock up on non-perishable staples, decorations and other paper goods – things like alcohol, wrapping paper and baking supplies. You will likely save money, have your choice in terms of selection and avoid the holiday crush.
Look for recipes that allow you to make items ahead of time and freeze them. Cookie dough is a great candidate for this. Make the dough a few weeks ahead of time and freeze. Thaw, decorate, bake and serve amidst the holidays. Less of a fuss but still fresh from the oven!
Another good candidate is side dishes for the holiday dinner. Look for veggie casseroles to make and freeze a day or two ahead. Just be sure to allow enough time to thaw them when the big day arrives!
We’ve even known people to cook the turkey the day before, carve it, then wrap tightly for the fridge. The “day of,” it’s a simple matter to remove from the fridge and heat. No more waiting around for that reluctant bird to cook!
The holidays are over and now it is time for the annual clean up. Strategize your clean up and make things easier for the next holiday season. It may seem simpler now to throw those snarled strings of lights into a plastic bag, but think how much less stressful next year’s decorating will be if you spend a few minutes now? Wrap Christmas lights around cardboard cut to fit in a plastic bin and simplify your next holiday season immensely.
Clear plastic bins and other containers which come in a variety of shapes and colors can be an inexpensive, effective way to organize/store holiday items. Find the sizes that work best for your decorations, ornaments and wrapping paper, label them and store them away for easy access a year from now.
Look out for you!
Whether or not it is the holiday season, it is still important to take care of yourself (“Grinch Prevention”). Be sure to eat healthfully, get some sleep, and continue your exercise and other health routines. The holidays can seem overwhelming, but make sure to take some time for yourself, enjoy the season and savor the moments with friends and family from near and far.
The holiday season always comes and goes too fast. We hope that these tips allow you to make the most of these precious moments. Please keep us in mind if High Point can help with any of your catering or event needs this time of year!