On the sixth day of parenting, my toddler gave to me, a tantrum and a dirty nappy… Actually he does that most days! I’m sure you’ve already picked up some fabulous tips from Mummy Fever on how to survive the holidays as a host, so in honour of their blog, and all the others in this blog hop, I thought I would add my sixpence worth! 

Before we get started on my survival tips though, I’m very happy to announce that I am today’s sponsor, giving away a Younique make up goodie bag worth £113!  Terms and conditions for the #12daysofparenting blog hop can be found on MummiesWaiting and Rafflecopter entries can be made via the link at the bottom of this post. 

How do you survive? How can you possibly be the “hostess with the Most-ess” without crying yourself to sleep every night and waking up in a cold sweat after dreaming about burnt dinners and broken toys? 
It’s simple. You hire a personal chef to do all your cooking, a Nanny to keep the kids looking immaculate, a cleaner to make your home sparkle (and not just because of all the bloody glitter!) a beautician and a hairdresser to keep you preened from top to toe, throw in a personal shopper whilst you’re at it, to complete all your Christmas shopping, and get yourself a gorgeous new wardrobe at the same time and hey presto! The perfect Christmas, and not a tantrum or chipped nail in sight. 
*sigh* we can all dream can’t we ladies and gents? My budget just about stretches to having my shopping delivered, and the odd manicure /eyebrow wax! 
Actually I lie. We’re pretty spoilt in this house, and get most things delivered including 3 meals a week from Hello Fresh. (Discount code KPQQQH) 
That’s already Half the stress taken out of the week. Because half of our meals are already accounted for, even if we have guests. We just increase our portion needs on the website! It also means I feel less guilty if we have pizza and chips on a Friday night, as I know that half of our meals at least are well balanced! 
So, on to the kids, sleeping arrangements for visitors, and how to entertain everyone without loosing the plot. 
Make it work for you! If you have grandparents round. Point them to the local park/playbarn/Santa’s grotto and kick everyone out of the house for a few hours. Don’t waste the time on cleaning, but spend quality time with your hubby (nudge nudge) or get your nails done, or go for a 30 minute massage. Plan activities so you don’t have people lounging on Settees eating and drinking you out of house and home. Even if your planned activities are more of a Rosta, ie: cleaning schedule where everyone joins in (the toddler will happily clean the windows if I give him a cloth and spray some window cleaner on the patio doors!) so you can all keep on top of the house. A clean house = a clear mind, and stops the stress building! 
Set limits. (And I don’t just mean limiting yourself to one large glass of wine or 3, although I can really recommend a glass of port and lemonade. It really does get you in to the Christmas spirit!!) set time limits. Mostly, after 2 or 3 days with guests, you start to crave your own space back. Make it clear to any potential visitors how long they are welcome for. (This may sound harsh, especially for those travelling a long way, but it can save your family!) 
Make your expectations/traditions clear. If you don’t normally cook Turkey, then don’t cook it just because 1 guest asks for it. Don’toverstretch  yourself as the stress will just mount! Don’t be scared to ask for help! Most family members will ask if you need help anyway. Don’t dismiss them, use them! Even if just to peel potatoes or unload the dishwasher! 
Make time for you.  It is so easy to carried away by all the activity in the house! As mentioned above, you can do this by arranging for people to go out to various activities. Or you can do it just by making sure that in the mornings you get chance to shower (without the toddler banging on the door shouting Mama!) dry your hair, get dressed, and even put on some make up. There’s nothing like being up and dressed with your “face on” for feeling in control. On the other hand, running around after everyone and not getting out of your Pj’s until lunch time is not going to help you feel like you have it together. 
Remember, mostly. People are adults. (Other than the obvious kids of course!) they can make their own breakfast, they don’t need a fry up every morning, and they don’t need you to entertain them. As long as the kids are thrown some food, and there’s enough milk for cups of tea, you’ll mostly be ok! 
If it does somehow all fall apart. (I promise you it won’t! Forgetting to buy sprouts really isn’t the end of the world!) Then laugh about it. Just laugh it off the swear never to host the holidays again! 

Still don’t think you can make it? Why not hop on over to Cookies and Cwtches for even more tips on how to own the holidays, and another chance to enter the grand prize draw! 
Ps: our code word is ; Teen 

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