Holidays are a time for family and friends, but with all we have to do it seems there is little time left over to spend with the family and friends. Let me share my philosophy, which will help relieve the stress your feeling. Your family and friends will never know or notice what you didn’t get done. They will only see all that you did do.

So this year, I’m baking a limited amount of Christmas cookies and not the piles I normally do. There are always so many left over and I’m the one who tries to eat as many as I can before feeding the rest to the birds and deer. I don't need or have time to spend extra minutes on the treadmill.

Everyone will get one wrapped gift this year, so they get that feeling of opening a surprise package but the rest of the gifts are going into bags or are card gifts.

Christmas breakfast will be a crockpot filled with cream chipped beef which can be made the day before. Christmas dinner will not be the sit down dinner that Thanksgiving was, but trays of lasagna which I also will make the day before. I'm using throw away trays mind you. WINK And, desert will be cookies, chocolates, fruit amd maybe a pie or two.

Am I being lazy. No. My whole family isn't able to get together very often. Life is too busy for us all. I don't want to spend it in the kitchen. I'd rather enjoy them. Memories are made when you're together, not over the internet.

So do you have any time-saving hints or recipes for this holiday?


  1. Beth Trissel // December 15, 2011 at 12:16 PM  

    Excellent advice, and much appreciated. I think we are doing something brunchish for Christmas too. And simpler gift giving as well. Thanks for making me feel better about doing more with less.

  2. Judy // December 15, 2011 at 2:23 PM  

    We'll be in Boise for Xmas with a new grandbaby, a toddler, one of our boys, nieces, nephews, etc. We all love to cook and eat but because they live close together, it's easy to share the chores and that's what we do. You're right, Autumn, it's important not to spend all the time working but enjoying each other. Happy Holidays! And I'm wishing you and yours a healthy new year!

  3. Mary Marvella // December 15, 2011 at 2:43 PM  

    I think you are being smart! Everyone will have fun and you won't be so overworked!

  4. Autumn Jordon // December 15, 2011 at 3:08 PM  

    Thanks, Ladies for stopping by. Glad I could help and here's another tip to make next week a little easier. Buy all your non-perishable groceries that you'll need this week. The less you have to get next week, the less time you'll have to spend in kaos.

    Judy, Enjoy the little one. Safe travels.

  5. Nightingale // December 15, 2011 at 5:16 PM  

    I think you've got the right idea Autumn. I've been lucky this year and did all my shopping early except for the presents to England which I left until last! Sounds like you will have a wonderful holiday with your family and friends. Enjoy!

  6. Pamela Varnado // December 16, 2011 at 10:03 AM  

    Great idea, Autumn. Now you'll have time to really enjoy and spend time with the ones you love. Which is what the holiday season is all about. I especially love your plan to limit the amount of food you prepare. I throw away so much food after the holidays. This makes me feel guilty. Thanks for all the helpful tips.

  7. Mary Ricksen // December 16, 2011 at 6:06 PM  

    I'm coming to your house for Christmas! I wanna trade my family in for a less selfish and nicer bunch like you have!!!
    I hope everyone has a great Xmas!

  8. Mona Risk // December 16, 2011 at 7:01 PM  

    Autumn, you're very wise. Unfortunately, I can't get away with a simple menu. My kids insist for the elaborate food they don't cook in their homes. So I've been rolling grape leaves for two days, preparing crepes for canellone, stuffing fillo with cheese to make tasty baked triangles. The kids are staying three days so I need to be ready with lunches and dinners for three days. On Christmas Eve, I'll also have my aunt and her family and a friend of my husband and his wife. Autumn, I'll bake your blueberries pie that my grandchildren loved so much. We'll also have profiterol, puff in a rich chocolate sauce. But this year I will let my kids handle the dishwashing as I can't stand on my feet long.

  9. Hildie McQueen // December 16, 2011 at 10:23 PM  

    Your ideas are perfect. It's horrible that after our dear ones leave, we're left tired and cranky and with the feeling that we didn't get to spend time just relaxing and talking with them. Hurray!! I say go for it!

  10. Josie // December 18, 2011 at 3:39 PM  

    All of your ideas for saving time and work are excellent. I'd add using paper plates and plastic utensils--just the better brands.