holiday hacks

10 Christmas Shopping and Decorating Hacks You'll Love

Eva Niessner

10 Christmas Shopping and Decorating Hacks You'll Love

The holidays are a lot of fun...as long as the shopping, cooking, decorating, and gifting isn't getting too unmanageable. Well, we never like to see our fellow Marylanders stress out. Here are a few fun hacks you can try this holiday season!

1. Be like Santa -- make a list and check it twice

It'll curb your impulse buying and spending, and it'll ensure that you've really sat down and thought about what you'll be buying for whom. You can also use it to track your budget for gifts.

2. Skip the dishes -- seriously

Nobody likes doing the dishes around the holidays. Nobody! Instead of forcing yourself or someone else to do them, buy some high quality single use plastic plates and treat yourself to the easiest cleanup ever. More time to watch movies or sports!

3. Go the Secret Santa route instead of buying for everyone

Stressed about shopping for your whole friend group, office, or family? Get everyone on board with a secret Santa where each person focuses on a great gift for just one member of the group. 

4.Do the holidays potluck style

Instead of asking one person to do all of the cooking (and all of the ingredient shopping), let everyone bring a dish to share. Folks who don't have much skill in the kitchen can buy beverages or bring premade dishes from the farmer's market.

5. Store your wrapping paper safely

Just grab a garment bag and store your tubes inside! This is less bulky than a big box, but will still offer protection from dust, pets, and sunlight. 

6. Store items in your online cart

After a day or two, the retailer may send you a coupon to encourage you to go back and buy the items you've collected. It's a good way to save a few extra bucks on gifts you already planned to buy. 

7. Snag a reusable tree you can use year after year

Some people prefer to the smell and look of a real tree, but an artificial one can pay for itself as it's used year after year. You can get great deals on them as you get closer to Christmas day -- might not be a bad idea to find next year's tree now!

8. Consider giving your time instead of your money as a gift

For many people, having company while they tackle a big clean or make a long drive can be worth a lot more than a gift from the store. Do you have friends with small kids? Offer to babysit. Know someone coming from out of town to celebrate? Let them skip the Uber and drive them to the airport. 

9. Keep everyone's gifts organized with unique paper

Instead of sticking name tags on a bunch of different packages, you can keep things streamlined by giving each member of the family or friend group their own wrapping paper design. It'll make passing them out a cinch!

10. Decorate with natural items

One of the best things about the holidays is the fact that you can use things that are found right outside your door to decorate! You can gather pine cones to put in a glass jar, apples and winter gourds for the table, and pine boughs for the mantle. 

Leave a reply

sort by date

Latest articles

HOROSCOPE
Madame Maryland's Horoscope: March 2024

02/20/24

Madame Maryland's Horoscope: March 2024

Happy March, Marylanders! Warm weather is not so far off and the short winter nights are slowly getting longer. What could the season have in store? Well, Madame Maryland looked...

read more
GARDENING
5 Hacks for Small Space Gardening

02/24/24

5 Hacks for Small Space Gardening

Now that the weather is getting warm again, you may feel the urge to get your hands dirty and plant some flowers, herbs, or veggies! Of course, not everyone has...

read more
Small Budget? No Problem! Here are 7 Free Things to Do In MD

02/06/24

Small Budget? No Problem! Here are 7 ...

  Let's face it -- life is expensive! It seems like just about everything these days is more pricey than we remember it being. But here in Maryland, there are...

read more
10 Uniquely Maryland St. Patrick's Day and Irish Cultural Celebrations

02/07/24

10 Uniquely Maryland St. Patrick's Da...

1. Baltimore's St. Patrick Parade A tradition for more than 65 years, the annual St. Patrick Parade will be held this year on March 10. Running from the Washington Monument...

read more
DATE NIGHT
6 Fun Maryland Spots For Your First Date

02/06/24

6 Fun Maryland Spots For Your First Date

Love is in the air! Valentine's Day is on its way, and there's a promise of spring here in Maryland. That means that many of us are finding romance, and...

read more
BALTIMORE
5 Super Bowl Dishes Your Big Game Party Needs

02/06/24

5 Super Bowl Dishes Your Big Game Par...

No, we still haven't gotten over the fact the Baltimore birds won't be in the Super Bowl this year...but we can still have fun at our party! Besides cheering on...

read more
HOROSCOPE
Madame Maryland's Horoscope: February 2024

01/23/24

Madame Maryland's Horoscope: February...

Happy February, Marylanders! The year is under way and spring is on the horizon...well, if you squint, anyway. What does the season ahead hold in store? Well, Madame Maryland looked...

read more
GALENTINES
6 Unique Galentine's Day Ideas

01/23/24

6 Unique Galentine's Day Ideas

Who says you need to be in a romantic relationship to enjoy sharing the love in February? We're talking about Galentine's Day, a new-ish invention in which ladies show their...

read more
HOROSCOPE
Madame Maryland's Horoscope: January 2024

12/26/23

Madame Maryland's Horoscope: January ...

The new year is upon us, Marylanders! 2024 is full of potential, and who knows what could be around the corner? Well, Madame Maryland is here to answer that question!...

read more