Holiday Tips that Don’t Cost a Cent!

I hope that all of you had a terrific Thanksgiving!

I had a really wonderful time. Stephen, my parents, Baloo and I went to my Wanda’s house for dinner. It was a nice mix of different ages and differing political opinions. The discussions were serious but the atmosphere was so comfortable and familial, we sat around the table and talked for 3 or 4 hours after dinner. Then we watched a few movies, she recently converted her attic into a cozy and den like home theater, and took the compulsory after dinner nap.

As a result of spending some unexpectedly high quality time with my family, I thought a lot about how to make every holiday party time more meaningful and memorable. Here are the ones that I am going to try to incorporate into the rest of my holiday gatherings.

Bring photos

These give you a ton of good material for stories. They are a great way to share what has been going on with one anther, spark up a conversation and create new memories.

BYOF- Bring Your Own Food

Whenever possible bring something that you have made yourself to your next gathering. Regardless of how much family may bug us at times, family, in all of their incarnations is by far the most important thing in the world to us, and we all love to share with one another. Whether your experiment with holiday food ends up a mess or a success, either way it makes for colorful memories.
Bring Pets

If you’ve got em, and they are well behaved, flaunt ‘e,m. Pets can bring out the best in everyone. Sneaking Baloo some tasty scraps is a pastime that I am often surprised how many family members really get into.

Throw a Tasting Party

Tasting parties are a great idea for holiday shin digs. Basically the gist of it is, you get a few varieties of the same tasty things, for instance if you choose chocolate, taste chocolate at your tasting party. If you are worried about the cost of a tasting party, throw it pot luck style and have everyone bring, their favorite chocolate, for exampls.

Learn how to use the self timer on your camera

Everybody loves to use the self timer, its exciting. Especially after a couple of cocktails

Bring Jokes

Think of one good joke or a funny story to share with the fam!

Deck the Halls

If you get some holiday music and make some holiday smells

Let me know what all of you plan to include in the rest of your holiday shin digs!

What's Fresh from @RachaelRay

Rachael Ray