Even though it’s a little late in the season, stress reduction is crucial to getting through holidays in tact. Since stress is a vital component of holidays, I figure it’s still relevant. The Mayo Clinic article I link to is basic information that’s good to be reminded of.
I have to get my two cents in, of course. Planning ahead is on the list, but it doesn’t include the most important way to do this: Make simple meals that you can prepare ahead. If you’re at a loss, pick up this month’s issue of Real Simple (the best magazine ever) and turn to the holiday insert immediately. You’ll find a collection of menus for different types of parties, including a shopping list and a break down of what can be prepared in advance.
After attending one party and hosting two more between Sunday night and this afternoon, my mom told me that she plans for Christmas dinner to be a re-creation of a Thanksgiving meal. My response? "Are you trying to kill yourself and dad in the process?" (not in those exact words). Enter Real Simple.
If you’re also inclined to overdo it, give yourself a break. Who wants to be laid up with a horrendous headache on Christmas, Hanukkah or New Year’s? Even if you’ve done your grocery shopping, ask your guests to help. People like to pitch in and it will help you relax — as long as you don’t try to control the results of your sous chef.
Now I have to convince my mom long-distance to not go crazy for our meal. I’d say I have a 5% chance of success.