Eliminate your holiday meal stress!

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Hosting a Christmas meal can be exhausting and expensive. A lot of preparation goes into planning a menu, buying the ingredients, and putting each dish together the day of. Then, there is always a home to clean, a table to set, and beverages to be put together as well! This makes the holidays tiring and stressful, and doesn’t let the host enjoy the meal with family and friends.

Planning early or making a schedule only goes so far – a lot of work must still be done the day of, and a lot of the stress cannot be avoided. However, if you’re hosting a holiday meal, consider lightening your load by assigning others to bring a dish!

Just because you are hosting the meal, doesn’t mean you should be afraid to ask for help. Side dishes like casseroles or vegetables are easy for others to bring and quickly heat once they arrive. You can also ask some of your guests to bring one or more desserts. If your aunt makes the best green bean casserole, or your sister has time to make a dessert, don’t be afraid to ask them to contribute to the meal. Beverages or appetizer dishes are also easy to assign to others.

Allow yourself to enjoy the meal by taking some of the load off of your feet. Many of your guests will be happy to help and contribute to the meal. To prevent people from bringing the same item, or bringing a dish that doesn’t fit with the meal, consider delegating a specific dish or giving each guests a couple of options to choose from. This way, you will still have control over the menu and dishes, but won’t have to prepare everything yourself. You can also stay more organized the day of by confirming with each guests a couple of days before whether or not they will need to heat anything in the oven or microwave, so you can plan your own cooking.

Make the holidays more enjoyable this year, and spend time with your family and friends. Too often, hosts spend most of their time organizing menus, shopping for ingredients, and preparing turkeys, and don’t get to visit with their loved ones. There is only so much organizing you can do beforehand – the only way to really cut down on stress is to eliminate some of the tasks that need to be done for the meal. Get your guests to help and bring a dish of their own, or even dessert – anything to help you enjoy the meal with them!

This year, have a relaxing an enjoyable holiday!