Guest Guru, Christine Saunders of WishPot

Have Yourself a Stress Free Holiday

This year have yourself a stress free holiday. If you are someone who loves the holidays but can live without the crowded shopping malls, the holiday traffic, the back aches that come from carrying bags and bags of presents. Here are a few helpful tips:

Organize your shopping.

The first step to a stress free holiday is to organize your shopping. Create lists of the things you want for yourself and for each member of your family. You don’t have to do anything out of the ordinary. Browse the internet like you normally would and when you see something that strikes your fancy save that gift idea and add it to your list. Keep all the things you are looking to buy all in one place.

Unlimited Shopping.

How you ask? How do I sit in my PJ’s, sip hot cocoa, with marshmallows and still find the perfect holiday gifts? It sounds too good to be true. And it’s easy. Shop online and use a wish list service; one that lets you add items from any site to your wish list. But make sure you don’t have to pick gifts from certain stores because you are limited by your list service.

Use holiday gift guides.

Let’s just say you don’t know what to get Aunt Jasmine? Use Holiday guides. Find sites that let you see what other holiday shoppers are shopping for. Holiday guides are written by people who are in the know and they are filled with great gift giving ideas. It is their job to wrack their brains thinking of cool stuff to give so you don’t have to.

Shop within your budget.

Be budget savvy and alleviate a lot of holiday stress by sticking to your budget. Over spending especially during the holidays is a sure fire way to set the stress bug loose. Promise yourself you won’t overspend and then don’t. And treat yourself when you stick to the plan. A little incentive never hurt anyone.

Wrap gifts early.

If you are like me and love to wrap presents, have the gifts you order online shipped to you first, wrap to your heart’s content, and bring the gift with you to the holiday party. Or if you’d prefer to avoid wrapping all together, you can have your list items shipped and packaged to their desired destinations. If you choose the wrapping option, wrap early and use gift tags. This will free up some of your holiday time during the December crunch.

Simplify holiday traditions.

Distance and the cost of living are a few reasons that many families have chosen to simplify holiday traditions. Simplifying the tradition does not mean replacing the fun. Instead, set up a long-distance Secret Santa or get creative and exchange gifts you make for one another.

Plan your holiday party.

Who can resist the festive colors, creative centerpieces, and mouth watering holiday recipes? Now you don’t have to. Fall in love with a recipe online? See a festive spread that you simply must recreate? Don’t stress. Make sure any list service can also set-up holiday planning lists, decoration lists and recipe lists.

Get what you want.

Using a wish list service to help you organize your holiday shopping and planning is the best way to a stress-free holiday, and while there are many services that do this, Wishpot, a free online service takes it one step further. Wishpot can do it all! Wishpot not only lets you shop anywhere and create multiple lists, but it also gives you the option of keeping your purchases a surprise, and it sends you notifications when your list items drop in price making it easier to stick to your budget. There is no need to return unwanted gifts because friends and family can get what you want the first time around!

Save yourself some anguish; shop online and use an online wish list service to set up lists and plan a holiday that ends with you sipping hot cocoa and watching It’s a Wonderful Life… and when everyone gawks at your organizational skills you can smile and tell them you hired elves.

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