Holidays can be so stressful. Especially if you are hosting company, cooking the meals, arranging for everyone to be comfortable, and feeling like you need to do all the entertaining. Here are a few tips to help yourself relax a little and let yourself enjoy the special day, too!
1. You don't have to do everything yourself. It's okay to ask people who are coming over to bring a dish! Some may even like to come early and help out with the cooking. If you can get someone else to handle the appetizers or the drinks or the desserts, that's one less thing you have to worry about.
2. Ask your company to keep the area neat. Having the kids who are over keep their toys or jackets or boots all in one set location will keep your living area clean for everyone to enjoy. If there's a designated area for luggage, laundry--whatever tends to pile up in the way--will keep your house appearing more organized and keep you more relaxed.
3. Enlist help. Try asking for help. You'll probably be surprised at the positive response! Many times people would like to help you but don't know what you need. So asking someone to carry a tray of food into the dining room, having a few people help bring the dirty dishes into the kitchen, asking your family to help wash dishes while you prepare dessert, or hiring help for the occasion can all be a great relief for you.
4. Take Shortcuts. Get wild and crazy with these ideas: use disposable dishes and flatware; use paper napkins; buy the desserts instead of baking them. Go out on a limb and figure out how you can save precious time to spend with your company instead of cooking and cleaning for them!
5. Remember the meaning of the holiday. Remember that people aren't really coming over to eat delicious food off of fancy china and be served homemade pumpkin pie. People are all coming together to see each other and the eating is just the icing on the cake. Let some things go. Do what's important. And remember the famous words of Dr Seuss, "Those who matter don't mind, and those who mind don't matter".
Make it a great one :)