1. Want your house to smell like Christmas? Here’s an easy way to do it on your stove top.
You’ll need oranges, cranberries, cloves, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Put all the ingredients in a sauce pan with water, and place it on the stove on the lowest setting. Christmas-y smells for a month! Full directions here.
2. Big potluck you need to cook for, but little time? Bake potatoes while you are away at work.
Just wrap potatoes in aluminum foil and place them in a Crock-Pot. Cook them on low for about 8 hours, and when you come back home from work, they will be done! It’s also an easy way to bring baked potatoes to a holiday potluck party.
3. Making mashed potatoes or fries? Use an apple slicer to quickly cut up potatoes.
You easily make mashed potatoes for everyone now.
4. More potato tricks for you: If you accidently put too much salt in a recipe, putting a slice of raw, peeled potato will soak up the extra salt.
5. Brrr, baby it’s cold out! Nothing says the holidays like some warm soup. But who has time to make it for a whole party?
It doesn’t have to be time consuming! Make mini grilled cheeses and soup. Cut grilled cheese sandwiches into 8ths and serve your favorite soup in tiny cups.
6. Let’s talk about holiday leftovers. What should I do with all that Thanksgiving turkey? You have options. How about turkey stuffing rollups?
Use your leftover turkey, stuffing, and gravy to make this dish. Full instructions here.
7. Or for something really different… try Turkey Cranberry Enchiladas.
Wrap your leftover turkey and cranberry sauce with black beans and cilantro, and you’ve got a Post-Thanksgiving-Mexican-Inspired meal. Full instructions here.
8. And with all leftovers, freezing is the best way to keep them safe to eat for awhile.
For a nice easy way to portion out your gravy or cranberry sauce or whatnot, place the leftovers in a plastic zip bag and flatten as much as possible. Make indents of the portion sizes you want with a chopstick. Now when you reheat your mashed potatoes, you can warm up the exact amount of gravy!
9. You’re probably going to wrap some presents this season, so why not make your own gift bows?
They’re fun to make, and it’s a cool way to recycle your old magazines. Full instructions here.
10. For a fun way to light up your New Years party, set up a DIY photobooth.
All you need is a computer/laptop with a camera, and a fun backdrop for people to snap photos in front of! If you’re really adventurous, you can make props for all your guests to pose with. Fake mustaches and big glasses are always popular. It’s as easy as that!
11. You just moved and you didn’t bring your ornaments?
You could use painted egg carton parts as fancy light covers!
12. To make sure your lights don’t get tangled, wrap them around pieces of cardboard.
Cut slits on the top and the bottom of the cardboard, and secure the end of the Christmas lights on one slit. Wrap the remaining length of lights around the cardboard and secure the end on the bottom slit.
13. You can store holiday candles that aren’t in use inside paper towel tubes.
Wrap the candles in tissue paper and insert them inside the tube. You can then label them anyway you like.
14. This trick can be used any time of the year, but during the holidays, you’ll definitely want wine when seeing the ‘rents.
Okay, you’ve got your wine, but OH NO! You forgot to bring a corkscrew. If you have a hammer, screwdriver, and a screw, then you don’t need to worry. Simply twist the screw into the cork with the screwdriver, and pop the cork out with the hammer claws. More detailed instructions here.