It really is the most wonderful time of year and in our household excitement levels are already super high, goodness knows how we will be by the 25th!
As my children get a little older the magic of Christmas really is coming alive and it is so lovely to see them so excited and enchanted by everything this month holds for them. Thankfully my son has changed his mind and no longer wants a tortoise from FC, a reptile tank really doesn't fit with the table scape I have planned this year!!
That brings me onto thoughts of planning and how having the logistics and organisational details in place can help so much in making the run up and actual day be as smooth and relaxed as possible. We can at least plan for that to be the case anyway!
Any regular readers of this blog will know by now that I am a paper person and planning, lists and stationary are at the forefront of most of my daily life, glamourous I know. However, I really do find a sense of calm comes from being as well prepared as I possibly can be, which in turn helps the whole household stay reasonably chilled.
Below I have included some of my most important 'go-to' tricks that really help make things as smooth as can be and help me to get as much enjoyment out of this crazy logistical time as I possibly can, I really hope one or two of these help you too!
Lists, Lists, Lists
I've said it before and I will say it again, having a list (or in my case several) helps to get thoughts and 'to-do's' out of my head and onto paper, where I can prioritise them and get them ticked off. This time of year I have lists on my work desk, kitchen tops, kitchen desk and sometimes even in the bathroom to look at when I first get going in the day. I sound like I am organising the fun out of life right now but trust me this helps!
Wrap it up
It is worth spending a bit of time in front of the piles of presents you have been buying over the last few months and thinking about wrapping them all up and how you want this to look. A pretty present says so much! Getting the wrapping paper, cards and bags altogether with your gifts gets a bit of a conveyor belt effect going and can really help to show how many groups of gifts you have and can prioritse these for you to get through methodically.
Pre-prepared cooking hacks
Even if you are a budding semi-professional chef, the logisitcs and volume of food expected at Christmas time can be overwhelming before you have even peeled a potato! Again get the shopping lists and menu planners going in plenty of time, but also think about what you can do before the big day to mitigate stress levels boiling over!
One brilliant hack I have recently discovered and tried, so I know it works, is pre preparing and freeezing everyone's beloved roast potatoes, trust me here, see my simple method below;
- peel and half your potatoes - boil them for 10 minutes - drain and dry - once dry shake so they fluff up - lay on a baking tray and dust with flour - freeze on baking tray - once frozen take out and turf into a bag - keep frozen until the day before - cook for 40/45 mins, turning regularly - voila you have easy but delicious roasties!
Plan a couple of outfits
After all your hard work and plans to get everything in place and make the day as magical as you can, you might like me, find yourself wanting to stay in your pj's and eat your Christmas meal under a blanket, as the inclination to think about getting dressed up is long gone. However, dressing up a little can really help to make you feel part of the party (whilst in reality you are the frantic duck flapping so hard under the water). Treat yourself to one item and make sure you are happy in it, so you know you will feel as special as the roast potatoes on the day!
Plan the table
We are hosting Christmas at home this year so I have focused a little harder on what the table is going to look like. Much like a well wrapped present, a beautiful table to sit at makes all the difference to a special day and meal altogether. This year I have gone a little OTT with Mrs Alice and we have a plethora of figures and animals joining us at the table this year. I love having the time to lay a really lovely table and I cannot wait to do this with the littles on Christmas eve.
Finally, I have just included a few of our best sellers this season to help with any last minute Gift Ideas for your nearest and dearest!
The perfect gentleman's brew in our masculine deep teal green with Deco design
Pretty in pinks with this spoiling tea cup and saucer, mug, egg cup and plate
For Little Ones
Although a little fragile, for the not so little little ones why not really treat them to their own egg cup and mug set
The ultimate cup of coffee has to be poured into the highest quality fine bone china cup, and a saucer just adds an extra refinement to the gift