The fall and winter holiday season can be a stressful time of year. You try to keep your home clean and beautifully decorated, host parties, make room for new gifts, stay warm…. These 10 Home Essentials to Relieve Holiday Stress will save your sanity during the holiday season.
This post is sponsored by BabbleBoxx.com.
No one wants to be stressed over the holidays. It’s the time of year when we should make every effort to spend even more time with our families, enjoy life and relax.
I’m one of those people who tends to over-do a lot of aspects of life. It’s just something that I enjoy. I enjoy throwing amazing parties. I love to decorate every corner of my house. I try to keep things clean while letting my kids enjoy life and play and just be kids. Because of this, I need all the help I can get for relieving holiday stress, and these tips and home essentials so useful.
10 Home Essentials to Relieve Holiday Stress and Save Your Sanity
Get Yourself a Robot Vacuum
One of my biggest pet peeves is a messy floor. My kids can be incredibly messy eaters. Sometimes it just leaves me asking “How? Why?” and it can be impossible to keep up with. I dread cleaning the floors. Since we aren’t able to have a dog to help us “clean up” after meals, I need something else to help me out around the house while I’m dealing with party planning, homeschooling, working and all of the other things that are on my plate.
The ECOVACS DEEBOT 900, a robotic vacuum, has been such a help, taking one big task off my long to do list, and it is perfect for all of us busy parents—throughout the year and during the busy holiday season. The DEEBOT has an app that you can download to your phone that allows you to be in total control—you can put your vacuum on a cleaning schedule for regular cleaning, tell your DEEBOT remotely to clean the house while you’re out shopping for your Christmas party and it even is smart enough to take itself back to the charging station when its battery is running low.
Because of the DEEBOT, I’m feeling much more at ease about my upcoming winter party! Cleaning the floors is always one of those time-consuming, exhausting tasks for me. Now I can focus on baking with the kids, decorating with a friend and not having to worry if an extra mess happens before, during or after the party. The DEEBOT will take care of it!
Seriously, get yourself one of these life-savers. The ECOVACS DEEBOT 900 is available at many online stores, as well as in store at Target. Find a list of retailers on the ECOVACS website. CYBER MONDAY SHOPPERS, there’s a deal for you! Participating retailers will be offering $100 off this Cyber Monday! Treat yourself!
Light Some Candles
A great way to get motivated, celebrate the season and make everything smell amazing is to light a candle! The Heritage Collection by Chesapeake Bay has a few phenomenal soy blend candles infused with essential oils. I’m an “oiler” and use oils regularly around the home. They can do so much to lift your spirits and get you going, so I was so excited when I saw that these are scented with essential oils!
Then I smelled them.
Oh. My. Goodness. I’ve always loved candles, but finding clean, “real” scents that I truly like can be challenging, but I’ve finally found a delightful collection. I received the Pumpkin Latte Small Jar Candle and it smells so good. I’ve been burning it to make my house smell lovely as I clean and prep holiday foods and for having guests, and my husband definitely enjoyed coming home to a wonderful-smelling home.
The Pumpkin Latte scent may be a fall scent, but it’s one that I’d carry through to Christmas. It has a delightful, rustic pumpkin pie scent with a sweet nuttiness and the perfect pinch of spiciness; it’s infused with cinnamon leaf and benzoin essential oils.
Chesapeake Bay has two other scents in their Heritage Collection of scented candles designed and poured in Maryland: Chestnut and Acorn (sweet and nutty with cinnamon leaf essential oils) and Beach Bonfire (a smokey, musky scent with eucalyptus, cedarwood, fir needle, patchouli and vetiver essential oils).
Have Extra Clean Sheets and Duvet Covers
Personally, I find that having bedding that can be easily cleaned, and having extra sets of clean sheets can be so helpful in everyday life and especially around the holidays with overnight guests, family touring our house and wanting a clean house to come home to after vacation.
The Luxe Hardcore Sheet Bundle from Brooklinen is luxurious, soft and simple with its smooth 480 thread-count and mix-match color varieties. Choose one color for your sheets and another for your duvet!
The collection comes with your classic sheet set (fitted, flat and pillowcases), along with a duvet cover and two extra pillowcases, and it’s affordable (whereas similar bedding can cost as much as $895)!
This set is so great to have on hand if you are expecting overnight guests, whether you use it for yourself or for your guest room. The duvet cover makes fresh bedding quick and easy, the soft sheets are just what you want to spread out on after a long day and it comes with everything you need for a complete, beautiful bed.
Get prepared for guests or relaxation (or both!) with a Luxe Hardcore Sheet Bundle shipped right to you! As an early gift, use this code (through 12/31/18) to receive $20 off of any purchase of $50 or more: arts20!
Install Smart Lights
Sometimes we are tempted to instantly turn down anything that is automated, because it feels like too much is automated these days. But let’s be honest—some technology really does make life simpler and more interesting!
Life these days can be so busy and demanding. We are constantly out and about. Sengled smart light bulbs are worth it. They will add color to your life and keep you on track!
When we go on vacation, we like to put some of our lights on timers. Sometimes we do this to make it appear as if we are home. We even have our turtle and tortoise tanks on a timer so we make sure the lights stay on the right amount of time for our pets, especially when we will be out of town.
Not only will the Sengled Element Color Plus 2-pack kit keep you on track, but it’s also programmable and has tons of great options and can even connect with other smart devices and check how much energy you are saving. Schedule during your vacation, turn on the low blue light to help ease your eyes as you watch Christmas movies and choose from 16 million colors and a thousand shades of white to set the mood for your holiday parties.
We also tried out the Sengled Solo Plus, which my husband set up immediately when it arrived. This color LED bulb has an app that you download to connect the bulb via Bluetooth to your phone. You can adjust the bulb to all sort of colors or moods, and it will connect the speaker on your phone as well! We played Christmas music as we cleaned, but you can also use it to play podcasts and audio books in your house (perhaps A Christmas Carol or The Night Before Christmas!). This wireless lighting also connects to the Echo Dot.
I am planning a party that these are going to be perfect for (and I plan to share about it with you)!
Through 12:01 PT on 12/31/18, you can receive the Sengled Element Classic 2pk A19 for only $10 when you buy an Echo. For Black Friday, Sengled Elements lights will also be on sale for 30% off on Amazon; Cyber Monday you can also expect a great deal—35% off of Elements products for 24 hours only, and Echo Dot v2/v3 and Echo v2 bundles with the Element Classic 2pk kit!
Line Your Shelves
Clutter and dirty surfaces can add stress when you have a lot to take care of already. As you prepare for the holidays, go through your pantry and other shelves. Find items you no longer need and take them out. If they are still good (food, bath items, etc), donate them to a local pantry or shelter.
Once you have your shelves decluttered, add new Smooth Top ® Easy Liner ® Shelf Liners to give yourself a clean, fresh start before the new year. These are a non-adhesive liner with a non-slip bottom, so they stay in place, but are still easy to change out. You can find several fun patterns, or stick with the standard white color.
Smooth Top ® liners come in widths of 12″ and 20″ and you are able to easily cut them to size to fit anywhere you plan to install them. They are easy to clean off and they are machine washable, which will make housework a lot easier. Find some great organizational tips here.
Decorate Your Home
Even a little decorating can go a long way. Sometimes I go all out on Christmas decorating, and sometimes I keep it simple. The 25″ Iced Mini Pine Artificial Christmas Tree by Northlight from Christmas Central is a beautiful, simple winter decoration that looks great as a table centerpiece, on a buffet, on top of your mantle, in an entryway or even on your office desk.
Christmas Central has trees from 3″ to 40′ tall, so you can find something for any space. I love this frosted mini green Christmas tree because it has a rustic farmhouse feel with its galvanized bucket and its realistic, high-tip-count PE branches that are lightly-dusted with “snow.” I’ve had many artificial Christmas trees before, but this is the prettiest…and it really does look real! It’s so pretty, I don’t even feel the need to decorate it.
I’ve only decorated a little, and you can already feel the joy of winter in our home. A mini pine tree is a great alternative if you live in a small space or unable to put up a large tree.
Keep Your Phone Charged
If you are anything like me, you use your phone a lot, especially during the holidays. I use mine for scheduling, sharing to social media, looking up resources online, staying up-to-date with family, GPS, planning parties and, of course, taking pictures!
Using my phone a lot means there is a good chance the battery will die at some point during the day, and I don’t always want to mess with going and plugging it in and not having it near me. A wireless charger can be very helpful! Keep one in whatever room you will be in most often—for me, that is the living room or the kitchen. This way, you are able to keep your phone charged while you are preparing meals or cleaning up the house, and still have it right next to you so you can look up the next recipe on your list.
Cuddle Up with Cozy Throws and Pillows
Add some pillows to your couch and beds, along with a soft, cozy throw blanket. Not only will it make everything look stylish, but it will also offer some comfort and warmth after a long, chilly, busy day.
Sip a Cup of Your Favorite Warm Beverage
Reward yourself with a cup of coffee, tea, cocoa (with marshmallows, of course), cider, eggnog…whatever your favorite warm beverage is. Sit back and relax for a bit. Breaks are important, especially during such a busy time of year, so make time for yourself. Make time to rest. Sit back and let your DEEBOT vacuum while you snuggle up with a soft throw blanket, smell your yummy Heritage Collection candle burning and sip your comforting, warm drink.
Always Make a List
Lists help me so much; I don’t know what I’d do without them. Get a nice notebook that is small enough that you can take it with you everywhere. My notebooks are essentially bullet journals, and they help me stay on track and store my ideas.
Here are some of the lists that I keep and recommend you do too:
- To-Do List—Keep separate lists for household tasks, party/meal planning, events you’re attending, chore lists for the kids and anything else, then have one master list that allows you to multitask and make sure everything is done in the best order
- Shopping lists—Make one list for household shopping and another for party shopping and Christmas shopping
- Cleaning List–I use this to help me remember what needs to get cleaned on which days to be ready before vacations or parties
- Gift Lists/Christmas Card Lists–I use this to stay on track with gifts I am preparing to give, so that I make sure everyone receives what they are meant to and I don’t have to do a ton of last-minute shopping
- Packing Lists—when we will be going on vacation, I make thorough lists of everything we need to bring along, including any gifts or emergency items we may need during our time away
- Pet Care Lists—If you have pets that someone will be taking care of, write up a list of what your pet needs and pre-prep any food to make everything as easy as possible for your house/pet sitter
- Pre-Trip Lists—I write these lists to remind us to check our vehicle before we head out, ensure we have someone set up to take care of our pets and the mail, unplug or turn off anything that isn’t essential so we save a little on energy costs, make sure items that will go bad while we are away are given to someone else or tossed out and placed outside before we go, make sure each door gets locked, the laundry is out of the washer and dryer and other important things that will help us stress less during the trip and when we arrive back home
These are just a few of the lists I use. What are some others you find helpful? I find that the more I write down, the less I forget and the more efficient I can be.