To the majority of people Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year. Good mood, great food, dazzling lights and long awaited presents.
It would’ve been perfect if the person standing behind all this wasn’t actually you.
Like it isn’t enough that you are buried up to your eye balls in Christmas shopping and gift wrapping, but now you need to be thinking of cleaning, cooking, keeping everyone entertained and meeting their dietary requirements.
A study by Travelodge revealed that women spend around 270 hours preparing for a family Christmas.
This is the equivalent of 11 days worth of shopping, cleaning, cooking, gift wrapping and decorating. Cleaning, probably the most unpleasant task of all, takes 15 hours of your time.
To make matters worse, here are some of the greatest Christmas concerns women have:
- Keeping the guests entertained tops the list with most women worrying they won’t manage to keep the party going for friends and family.
- The fact that guests may think the house is dirty is the second biggest Christmas concern for women, followed by stressing over the state of the guest room, bathroom and kitchen.
- Partner and children embarrassing them is not on top of the list, but still made it. Wonder how often that happens?
- The state of the spare room made the list of top five!
- And last, but not least women worry often that guests may hear their partner snoring.
Are these concerns unfounded? Not really. Surely decorations won’t look nearly as pretty in a cluttered home and guests are very good at assuming all sorts of things based on the state of your dwelling.
Your mum for instance, may think you’ve done a great job organising a fine party for everyone, but his mum might take the neglected oven as a sign of a neglected marriage.
For better or for worse, Christmas will live on in your guests’ memory long after the last glass of punch has been sipped.
The good news is that it is possible to organise Christmas in a methodical way and to simultaneously keep your sanity intact.
Don’t let anyone spot your greasy oven shelves and assume you are anything less than a great housewife and a host!
According to Rune Sovndahl, co-founder of Fantastic Cleaners Australia for Leader Newspapers, it is unbelievable how many households book oven and one-off cleaning in the period before Christmas just to make sure they pass the “in-law inspection” with flying colours.
One thing is for sure, if you want to survive Christmas, you should tackle all your preparations in an organised and methodical manner.
One way to keep your sanity intact during the holiday season is to start observing Oosouji. And, no, that’s not some weird ritual involving the slaughter of innocent animals. It is a Japanese tradition that will help you get the house thoroughly cleaned. In late December, during Oosouji, people in Japan clean their homes from top to bottom. Bluntly said, you will need to clean all the little things you otherwise ignore like door knobs, light switches, windows, oven, under the carpet etc. The point of it is to help de-clutter your home, mind and life, so you can enter the new year unburdened.
If Oosouji is so not up your alley, you can always delegate to trusted professionals. That’s your best chance to get a clean slate without lifting a finger. There are expert cleaning companies like Fantastic Cleaners who work weekends, public holidays and odd hours at no extra charge.
When you prepare for Christmas also:
- Have a budget and stick to it – it is possible to have a blast without breaking the bank. It’s not cheating to make your own ornaments and gifts!
- Clean the patio and doorstep. Make sure the front door is in tip top condition. Complete the look with a lovely Christmas wreath.
- Tidy the fridge and freezer. Free some space for all the food and drinks you will have to accommodate before, during and after the Christmas party.
- Don’t put the decorations up too early, as they will start to collect dust soon and will become a nightmare to clean when the party is just around the corner.
- Enhance the bathroom – buy quality soap and toilet paper, soft towels, flowers and scented candles.
- Sweets are not just for snacking – use Christmas cookies and marshmallows in a jar to decorate side tables.
Wish you a very Pinterest-y Christmas!
Do you have any tips or tricks to add to this? SHARE with us in the comments below.