Aunt Bonnie is coming over. And Uncle Joe. And Uncle Joe’s girlfriend and son. And, and, and…whether you are hosting 5 or 50 for the holidays, you’re feeling the pinch of preparing for the holidays and for the holiday family get together. The good news: there are services you can use during the holidays to keep up with the ever-growing list of to do’s (and that’s in addition to your busy professional schedule and kids’ commitments). So what can you do to tackle your holiday to-do list?
- Hire a cleaning service for the month or day. You have a million other things to do…gifts to buy, a menu to prepare, cookies to make with the kids (along with work and school)…why spend your time cleaning? Hire a local cleaning service for the month of December or for a day right before your family gathering. Have the cleaners give your home that deep clean from top to bottom, so you can focus on the important holiday prep details.
- Have your gifts wrapped at the store. When you have tons of presents to buy and organize, be efficient. Have the professionals at the store or online store wrap your gifts. If you are buying presents online for family and friends that live out-of-state, have the gifts wrapped and shipped directly to them—saving you a trip to the post office.
- Leave snow removal to the professionals. Save your back and time. Hire a snow removal service to clean your driveway for winter. Make sure you ask them to come and clean an area for parking right before your family arrives.
- Make a list (and check it twice). Now is not the time to be inefficient. Make a to-do list, and check it twice to make sure you are staying ahead of the work. If you can’t keep up, look for services (decorating, cleaning, etc.) to help check items off the list.
- Use a party planning app. There are several party planning apps that help break down the list of what needs to be done and when. Download your preferred app on your phone so you can stay on top of your holiday party details no matter where you are.
- Prepare as many dishes as you can ahead of time. Find recipes that allow you to prepare your dishes a few days or even week in advance. Avoid the last minute rush. Use slow cookers and roasters to help you prepare appetizers and side dishes.
The first step: take a deep breath. Then, get organized. Make a list of services you trust, such as a local cleaning service and snow removal company. If you are planning on heading up north with your family for the holidays, contact a cleaning service to clean your cabin and have it ready before you head to northern Wisconsin. Don’t forget to make the biggest preparation: for the celebration after it’s all done and everyone has gone home.