Christmas is the most wonderful, magical, exciting, smile-attracting and enthusiastically anticipated time of the year. Even more-so than Father’s Day.
But it’s also stressful.
Well good news, folks, I’m here to help.
Don’t feel like you have to stick, like red & green Christmas tree sellotape, to tradition. You don’t need to roast a turkey and check the date on the jar of cranberry sauce at the back of the fridge. Most of us don’t eat turkey all year around because chicken is better. So buy chicken.
You aren’t really there for the food anyway, or the presents – it’s about spending time with family. I mean the little kids are there for the presents, obviously, but us adults are switching over to the Secret Santa model in droves because who has the money to buy everyone a gift they probably don’t even want?
Spending time with family, however, is priceless and worth the effort. Especially these days when it’s so difficult to even find a weekend no-one’s working.
The other problem is juggling family commitments. Everyone wants you at their place for Christmas day so you end up dragging the kids up choked highways on a day they just want to play with their new stuff.
Here’s a tip – Boxing Day is an even better day to get together with family. Less pressure and everyone is still on a mental high from the day before.
Better yet, have Christmas in November. Or June. Or essentially any month other than December. January, for example, is a lovely month for all the trappings of Christmas – stonefruit, seafood and half price decorations.
You need to get yourself a wife. Well, that’s what worked for me. You might try a husband or similar.
Basically, what you’re looking for in a partner is someone who likes to be organised and doesn’t like too much help.
If they do like help, you can always stuff things up a few times so they learn they don’t want the kind of help you’re offering.
Of course, if they can’t multitask like my good woman and you’re rather more focused on having someone who’s good in bed or laughs easily, then I suggest making an assessment of their mothers and siblings before popping the question about moving in together to see if there isn’t someone closely related to take on the role.
The role of handling Christmas, I mean. Not saying…umm…eww…moving on.
del-i-geyt verb to appoint as deputy noun a person authorised to represent syn assistant agent sucker
Simply convince, through a series of gushy praise about their host skillset and the appropriateness of their home’s size and location, someone else in the family to hold a family Christmas do at their place.
Then convince them that rather than everyone bringing a plate everyone should chip in a few bucks (so you can focus on remembering to bring a nice bottle of their partner’s favourite plonk).
Then convince them, through the application of compliments thicker than the custard on the pudding, they loved doing this so they say something along the lines of ‘why don’t we do this here every year?’
If they haven’t said this by the time you’re packing up to leave, suggest it yourself. Important: do not actually do this yourself, but rather through a surrogate. Specifically their partner. This is where the liberal application of plonk throughout the delicious meal you didn’t need to prepare comes in.
Be Where The Other Shoppers Aren’t
If points one to three fail to reap rewards, and you end up having to do things yourself, the key might simply be research.
For example, I had a lovely chat with the checkout chick at Woolworths Rye when I bought the groceries for this post and discovered there’s actually a two week period over the Christmas holiday period when it becomes the busiest Woolworths in Australia.
Don’t shop there.
Instead, stand outside and ask people where they’re from. Whichever town or suburb gets the most ticks is where you might want to consider grabbing a trolley.
Or even better, don’t grab a trolley!
Most of us do a fair bit of online shopping these days but it’s not always practical, especially at Christmas. You don’t, for example, want to be sitting with family handing out gifts and have to explain to Grandma and your niece you were hoping their presents would have arrived by now but here’s a photo on your iPhone of what you’ve ordered and post it to them when it arrives later next week.
Not a worry for grocery shopping with Woolworths Pick Up though.
You order in your own time, nominate a pick up timeframe – which can include the weekend because it’s seven days a week – and the work is done while you do some of the other things vying for your time.
While you’re watching the kids’ sporting, or catching up with friends, someone will be hand picking and packing your salad ingredients just like you would, only they’ll be getting paid for it and you wouldn’t have been. Essentially, as I see it, you’re providing employment.
On that, I should mention this service is free if your order is over $30. I can’t seem to come out of the supermarket for under $50, so no worries for me.
I actually did a comparison of the Pick Up option vs going into the supermarket myself and, as you can see from the video below, there’s potentially much more beach and sun and inside voices involved in letting the Pick Up team push the trolley for you.
Download the Woolworths app and you can track your order too, and there’s something like 970 locations nationwide for you to choose to pick your purchases up from, which coincidentally is how many items my kids attempt to sneak into my trolley when I take them shopping.
Want to know how many items they snuck into my order using Pick Up? Rhymes with one only it’s not that many.
So they’re my five tips for a stress free Christmas.
Let me know if you’ve tried Woolworths Pick Up yourself. Love to know if your thoughts on it’s convenient match up with mine. And have a Merry Christmas!
Raising a family on little more than laughs
~ thank you to Woolworths for sponsoring this post ~