10 Ways to do Christmas Day the fuss-free way

Stress free Christmas Day

Christmas is the time of year that, for all its excitement, can also be stressful, tiring and a bit of a let down after so much excitement in the lead up to the big day (particularly for parents). A simple approach to Christmas will help you avoid this outcome and in turn create a new tradition of fun and relaxation. The key to a fuss-free Christmas Day is all down to preparation and a focus on family. The following tips will help ensure that every member of your family has the chance to sit back and spend quality time together on Christmas Day.

1. Planning for a later celebration

Whether you are hosting the festivities at your home or going elsewhere, try to make the family celebration later in the day. This way, the kids can play with their pressies throughout the morning and not be forced to open their exciting new toys and then leave them behind.

2. Share the load

If having a celebration with family or friends on Christmas Day, have everyone contribute something to the feast. This encourages a sense of family community which is what Christmas is really all about.

Stress free Christmas Day

3. Prepare in advance

Prepare as much stress-free Christmas Day food in advance if possible. Serve cold food and plan a simple menu that you won’t be slaving over all morning on Christmas Day. We suggest hot barbequed chickens and cold prawns for decadence without the stress.

4. Early meal for the kids

Feed the kids soon after your guests arrive so that the adults can relax without children complaining of being hungry. While the adults eat their Christmas feast, sit the kids down to watch a favourite Christmas movie.

5. Keep your family traditions

Push the stress aside and try to keep some Christmas Day traditions for your family. Take the time to sing carols, open presents or have a special family breakfast before the craziness of Christmas Day gets into full swing. Don’t get distracted by all of the other things that ‘have’ to be done.

 6. Reasonable expectations

There are only so many hours in the day. Aim to share memories with your children and extended family. These are the things your kids will remember, not the gourmet meal. Driving all over town on Christmas Day to visit relatives is no fun for anyone.

7. Involve the kids

Where possible, involve the kids in the Christmas Day preparations. Depending on their age, they could complete tasks like setting the table, folding napkins, help to decorate the gingerbread house or help prepare some simple food items. This will eliminate their declarations of boredom and allow you to get on with the other arrangements.

8. Secret Santa

Consider starting a ‘Secret Santa’ arrangement for the adults in your extended family. Buying one present instead of half a dozen or more and putting a dollar limit on the present itself will minimise the expense and the stress in choosing a present.

Stress free Christmas Day

9. Distractions

Take a few of the kids’ new presents or other activities with you when visiting on Christmas Day so that they have something to keep them entertained in any situation.

10. Packing for a late evening

If going out later on Christmas Day, consider packing pyjamas and anything that might help the kids wind down at the end of an over-stimulating day.

Follow these tips and enjoy a more stress-free Christmas Day this year that everyone in the family will look back upon with fond memories.

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