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10 Holiday Hacks That Will Save Your Sanity

Everyone knows getting through the holidays is a marathon. Especially when you have kids. These super-simple hacks will save you time and stress — and keep things pretty (and merry, and bright, natch). And that means you get a little more time to kick back with fam and friends — and your mug of mulled wine.


1) DIY A DELICIOUS ADVENT CALENDAR – Half the fun of the holidays is the anticipation, so why not make your own advent calendar with a mini-muffin tin? Just drop some candies right in (bonus points if they’re leftover Halloween goodies), cover with stickers labeled from one to 24, and BAM you’ve got weeks of sweet excitement. Let the countdown begin!


2) GET STICKY WITH STRING LIGHTS. Use hot glue as an invisible way to hang lights on the mantel. They’ll drape ever-so-nicely in all their sparkly glory and, best of all, will peel right off after.


3) CREATE CLEVER IRRIGATION. Now there’s a purpose (other than a light saber) for your empty wrapping paper rolls: keeping your tree alive. Instead of dumping water all over the floor, funnel the water right into your tree stand. Engineering at its best.


4) HOOK UP YOUR DOOR. On the inside, that is, so you can hang your wreath over the door and open and close it with no problemo.


5) PEEL FOR SWEET CHOCOLATE SHAVINGS. For next-level hot cocoa, just use a plain ol’ veggie peeler to make curled deliciousness. It’s (almost) too pretty to drink.


6) STACK RIBBON. Use a paper-towel holder to store ribbon rolls so they’re right at your fingertips. Pretty to look at, and you won’t have to pull out fistfuls of gnarled ribbon from some unholy “craft drawer,” thankyouverymuch.


7) CREATE STYLISH WRAPPING. The sun doesn’t rise and set with store-bought gift wrap. Use aluminum foil for an elegant, bling-y look, paper grocery bags for a trendy, eco-chic feel, or grab some of your kids’ easel paper and let them decorate it for a personalized touch.


8) WINTER-WONDERLAND YOUR PLAIN CANDLES. Paint a candle with clear glue, then roll it in Epsom salt for a dusting of powdery snow.


9) GRAB ERRANT EGGSHELLS. Dropped some shell pieces into your bowl during cookie-baking? Wet your fingers and you’ll be able to fish ’em out much easier.


10) CHILL YOUR BUBBLY IN A FLASH. We’ve all been there: you forgot to chill the bottles and it’s almost toast-time. NBD. Wrap the bottles in damp paper towels and stick them in the freezer for 10 minutes. They’ll emerge perfectly cold and ready to pour.


Now toast yourself for being such a darn DOER and sit back and enjoy all that festive sparkle. To watch the full hacks video, click here.