The ultimate hosting Christmas checklist
The halls are decked and you've got a houseful of loved ones to feed and entertain. It can seem like a mammoth task, but break things down into manageable chunks and you'll be joining the festivities in no time.
Try not to sweat the small stuff – as long as everyone has something to sit on, something to eat and somewhere (if necessary) to sleep, then you're doing just fine.
☐ Make sure there are enough chairs for everyone
☐ Check you have plenty of cutlery, crockery and glasses
☐ Gather any bits you need for setting the table (serviettes, crackers etc.)
☐ Grab some extra loo roll, tupperware, cling film and tin foil
☐ Make space in the fridge/freezer for leftovers
☐ Replenish the first aid kit
☐ Source extra bedding and air beds if needed
☐ Get fresh bedding ready in spare rooms
☐ Tidy up the house (get everyone to pitch in!)
☐ Check there will be enough parking for guests
Synonymous with the festivities and a source of stress for many – but it's easy enough to get your gift giving under wraps.
☐ Buy in a couple of emergency presents in case you have unexpected guests or the kids receive surprise gifts from friends
☐ Schedule some time for present wrapping – you don't want to be stuck doing it all on Christmas Eve (again)
☐ Have your scissors, sellotape, gift tags, wrapping paper at the ready
☐ Grab some bin liners and have them at the ready on Christmas morning – when the presents are opened, make sure the rubbish goes straight in the bags.
☐ A pillow case containing a combination of little presents and main ones is a good alternative if you're breaking away from stockings
☐ Don't forget to leave a present for Santa and his reindeer
As soon as you know how many you're feeding, take the time to sit down and draw up a battle plan.
☐ Decide your meal plan early and check with guests for any dietary requirements
☐ Make a comprehensive shopping list
☐ Book your Christmas supermarket delivery slot
☐ Plan for a last-minute supermarket trip, just in case
☐ Stock up on store cupboard basics to avoid getting caught out
☐ Organise some nibbles to keep guests occupied
Entertainment doesn't have to mean pulling out all the stops – it's all about the finishing touches.
☐ Set up a Christmas playlist so there's no arguing with Alexa mid-meal
☐ If there's any Christmas telly you can't bear to miss out on watching live, set reminders
☐ Stock up on drinks (alcoholic and soft) and ice, if fridge space is at a premium
☐ Get some craft supplies together to keep the youngsters entertained
☐ Raid the cupboards for board games and packs of playing cards
☐ Buy some batteries – you'll need them at some point. Promise.
☐ Hosting a party? Designate one room especially for your younger guests – stock with art supplies, video games, DVDs, snacks – anything you see fit to keep them entertained.