It's official - As of today, it's a little over a week until the fat man in the red suit's arrival. So, the pressure's on and you're probably feeling it. Precisely why, along with help from some regular contributors, I've put together this survival guide of true life, no BS Christmas hacks to avoid any major meltdowns this season:
- Fluff And Fold: Send out your laundry and get someone to come in and clean your house or apartment. Save your energy and that red mani you just sat for. (Don't know about you, but I find sitting for a manicure pure torture these days. Idk, it might have something to do with the fact that I can't use my phone?)
- Unless You Drive A Fiat Or Mini (Cooper): Uber it and avoid parking hassles, headaches, and tix. Wouldn't you rather spend $25+ on a new lipgloss or something?
- This Week's Powerball Is 119 Million: Get yourself a few quick picks like right now. Merrier Christmas for you, right?
- You're Too Busy To Watch Your Fav Shows (This Is Us, Younger, Westworld, etc.) This Month: DVR or get your do the On Demand or Netflix thing. Making time to watch 'your shows' is a must do to stay sane this time of year.
- Bye Bye Paper Cuts: Find stores that offer complimentary (FREE) gift wrapping. Bought a few hardcovers today at Barrington Books Retold in Garden City and they asked if I needed it wrapped.
- Extra Is Where It's At: Keep a few extra gifts on hand. I used to work with someone who had a "gift closet" n her home. Sounds unnecessary and kind of Real Housewives-ish, until those friends and family members you thought weren't coming show up at the front door.
- Give Yourself Some Credit: Get the app for your credit card on your smart phone. Life changing because it shows you how much money you're actually spending. A nice wakeup call if (like me) you enjoy shopping a little too much.
- Bring Your Headphones: Tap into Pandora or my personal fav, Spotify (My playlist includes lots of 80's post-punk pop and 90's complaint rock.) and listen while you're shopping the brick and mortar stores because fluorescent lights & Christmas music can really do a number on you.
- The Elf On The Shelf Takeover: A solid reason to boycott Facebook or cut back big time for the month of December
- Scams And Scoundrels: Don't get packages delivered to your house, unless you're home all day long. Reports of stolen ones double and triple this time of year. (Long story short - thieves tail delivery trucks, then swipe the packages from your stoop.) Have a merrier Christmas by going to pick them up at UPS or FedEx instead. Hey, it might be a slight inconvenience, but it's much easier than having to replace gifts that have been swiped by a ring of thieves.
Ciao for Now,
Photo Credit: Photos of Providence skyline, ornaments, and Christmas tree courtesy of PattyJ.com
*Updated and revised from the original version of this post that appeared on PattyJ.com on 12/14/15.