Gifts From Handpicked

The Ultimate Christmas Day Checklist

Christmas a time of peace, love, joy, harmony and sharing, or a logistical nightmare designed to leave you exhausted for weeks, in need of a personal dietician and possibly, re-hab?  While Christmas is supposed to be fun it can turn into a massive headache if you're not used to organising it! While your average domestic TV goddess may demurely, seductively ooze her way through Christmas as if it were all a breeze, Santa does all the hard work and in-laws are delightful, the rest of us hardened Christmas providers know better. If you're new to running Christmas, here's an ultimate Christmas Day Check-list to smooth your way past the stuffing of an over-sized fowl and on to sedately manoeuvring yourself in the direction of your first small sherry. 

Tips For Making Christmas Morning Special

Christmas is for the kids – and we're talking the kid inside ourselves here too.  Making it special should come naturally but preparation is the better part of valour here.  Ensure you have a ready supply of the following;

  • Christmas Stockings – You don't have to leave your credit card on life support to provide a small bundle of age-appropriate joy filled socks.  It's a small touch but it gets everyone in the mood on Christmas morning.
  • Bin Bags – Prosaic, but a supply of these will help to restore the perfectly groomed looks of your living room after the Somme-like, frenzied onslaught of unwrapping. 
  • Clothing; it's traditional to wear some on Christmas Day but you might want to ensure everyone has a ready supply of PJs, woolly jumpers and big warming socks for that early morning present-fest.  Keep your Christmas Day best until you're ready to sit down to eat; especially if you're cooking! 

Christmas Food

OK, this should probably be first on the list of essentials but it's worth checking that you haven't forgotten anything at the last minute. The traditional Christmas dinner is nothing more than a heavily disguised Sunday Roast but it's the details the count and the following should be sourced now; pigs in blankets (construct your own or buy ready-made), Apple Sauce, Bread Sauce, Cranberry Sauce, Stuffing (if you're making your own you'll need sausage meat, sage, onion breadcrumbs). 

Don't forget the vegetables, it's worth picking these up last minute if you're determined to provide fresh; sprouts, carrots, potatoes (a pallet load if you're  mashing and roasting), cabbage and broccoli are all options.

Nibbles are your choice here really but everybody expects to put on more weight than is healthy at Christmas. Use disposable plates to cut down on washing up and you might be finished with that chore by New Year's Eve! 

Don't Miss Out

Christmas Day should be relaxing but if you're not prepared fully it can end up being a disaster.  Plan ahead to make sure that you don't miss any TV you've been looking forward to since September, get the “record” settings sorted well in advance! 

If you've been lucky enough to convince the in-laws that you'll visit them (rather than the appalling alternative), then plan any visits carefully and coordinate equally and carefully if you've more than one set of relatives to visit.  Avoid sensitive times like the post-lunch nap and/or Queen's Speech (if they're traditionalists) and don't forget a present for the cat!

Christmas is for Sharing

If you're running Christmas for your family remember it's a time for giving and sharing. They can ensure you get some of the Spirit of Christmas if they share the chores. Write a rota if necessary and delegate tasks well in advance. Above all, don't forget to enjoy yourself. Re-hab and diets can wait!