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Simplify Your Holidays in 3 Easy Steps

Photography iwishtheyweremine [1] by Paul Keleher [2]

Is your December out of hand? Gift lists, parties, decorations, shopping….

I’m just as guilty, trying to squeeze in everything before the holidays. Let’s face it, adding stress to the holiday season doesn’t usually make it more fun. Today, let’s step back and assess what we have left to do. The Life Skills Network [3] has created tips to help you simplify your holidays!

1. Simplify Your Shopping

Buy online. Online shopping has been the center of simplifying my holidays. I can compare prices, avoid crowds and ship items directly to recipients saving time and money. For ideas check out 10 Amazing Frugal Gift Ideas Under $20 [4].

Don’t impose spending minimums. Don’t spend more on something silly just to meet a dollar amount. Last year I talked about Why I Won’t Spend the Same Amount on the Kids [5], but it works for any family member.

Shopping with kids. Impossible to get any shopping done with your kids in tow? Have them snap pictures for a wish list to keep them busy or buy for them right under their nose [6].

2. Simplify Your Decorating and Activities

Use a theme. We Save on Tree Trimmings and Holiday Decorations [7] by assigning each member of the family a theme at Christmas time.

Pick just one project. Now that I’m home, I love working on projects with the kids. However, it’s easy to get carried away. I saw this fabulous idea for Advent Boxes, but it’s going to have to wait until next year. When in doubt, defer!

Bake once. I’m still in search of the perfect Christmas cookie that I can make for everyone. My aunt is known for her fudge; someday I’d like to have a recipe that everyone looks forward to. This year I’m trying Crunchy Peanut Butter Balls [8] and they taste pretty good so far!

3. Simplify Your Life

Do fewer things. Don’t overcommit yourself to every party and holiday invitation you receive. Put your effort into seeing those who mean the most to you. Schedule time after the holidays to get together with others.

Get creative. A tradition in my extended family is a planned regift. It helps you Finish Your Christmas Shopping Under Budget [9].

Prepare for next year. Even if this year is already turning into chaos, there’s always next year. Be better prepared for Christmas next year [10].

More Ways to Simplify

Check out all the tips to simplify the holidays from The Life Skills Network: