This year we have offered to host Christmas lunch. We are really looking forward to a fantastic day spent with family and the kids having lots of fun with the excitement and festivities.

So taking into account I am probably planning to cook as much food in one day as I do the entire year, how do I ensure I get to relax and enjoy the day with everybody else?

This is how I’m going about it…..

1. Make a plan

Pre-plan the menu and determine all the items needed including the decorations. Then organise a time to shop “child free” (if you can). Late night opening hours are a big help with this or shop online and get it delivered to reduce the stress of parking and crowds at this time of year.

Also in planning, work through the Christmas day plan. Have it clear in your mind what you need to do and roughly at what time ie. roast in oven at 10am.

TIP: For menu planning it is a good idea to consider foods that can be easily managed on the day or prepared beforehand.

2. Outsource

My husband has decided we will cook the chickens this year, however I am still leaning toward the option of pre-ordering some roasted chooks from our local shops. They taste terrific, take 10 minutes to pick up and will free up more space in our oven for the other two roasts we intend to do. It also means a couple less things to think about on the day.

Another way to outsource is asking family members to bring something. I have my sister’s families coming and so have asked they each bring a salad or dessert and of course mum makes a terrific seafood sauce so she is in charge of the prawns.

3. Prepare

Work out the dishes that can be prepared before the day such as cakes and desserts as well as the steps that can be done the night before like marinading and setting the table. Get everything done you can before the day, to allow you more time with your family.

TIP: Layout the serving plates ‘ready to go’ for each of the dishes, labelled with a sticky note. It helps provide a reminder and clarity about what needs to be done and also assists with communication if there is more than one of you assisting in preparing the meals.

4. Laugh

Remember this is a festive time and one when you are surrounded by family and loved ones, so at the end of the day make the most to enjoy it! No one will really care if the Turkey is a little dry… definitely not by their third glass of wine!

Merry Christmas …. Enjoy !

Main image courtesy of

  • A cold buffet style meal makes the day much easier.


  • I like the idea about outsourcing!!


  • Some great ideas there. Already have some dishes coming over , so that helps. My first time hosting in years as the older children have their own families.


  • Done, done, done and ready to do :)


  • It’s time to start planning for this year. For now I made a list of the people I want send a Christmas card too. Next will be time to write and send the letters.
    I am also working at the Christmas menu. Looking at the recipes here in Mouths of Mums is quite inspiring!! :-)


  • The main thing is to have fun and enjoy the day with your family!


  • This was an interesting mini article. Thanks for posting!


  • Will be bookmarking this for next yr for sure!


  • no matter who hosts Christmas each year(we rotate it around) we always ask each other to bring a few plates of food to cater for the day. makes the day a little less stressful and more enjoyable and relaxed. we had my family for xmas day lunch and my fiancés family for xmas day tea and it was so laid back and relaxed, we had a really enjoyable day. the bonus of everyone bringing a plate or two or three is that its less time in the kitchen for you and more time celebrating and having fun


  • should have read this before Christmas, lol. I will keep it all in mind for next year.


  • If only Christmas were that truly easy…. Ahhhh wishful thinking!! No matter what I put into planning for Christmas, or any event for that matter (even catering for the “what ifs?”), NOTHING goes smoothly!!


  • I was going to say avoid your mother in law haha


  • Great tips for this year!


  • Thanks for sharing this article. Great reading


  • these are 4 tips for every day life not just christmas but any time you have people over.


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