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Sheltering Arms Blog

Avoid Getting Burnt Out This Holiday Season

Posted on: December 4, 2018 by Clinicians Editor

By: Kathryn Perry, OTR/L, LSVT BIG Certified

With the holidays quickly approaching, it is easy to become overwhelmed with all the preparations necessary for spending time together with your family, particularly when it comes to preparing a big meal.

Here are some tips and suggestions to help you conserve energy during holiday meal preparation:

• Don’t try to make everything from scratch.
• Ask each guest to bring a dish to share.
• Delegate the foods you don’t enjoy making or that are more difficult.
• Prepare some items ahead of time that can be refrigerated overnight or frozen weeks before.
• Focus on preparing the main dish and have the sides catered or store bought.
• Consider having the entire meal catered or go out.
• Ask for help setting the table and cleaning up.
• Set the table the day before.
• Create a self-service beverage bar and/or buffet.
• Eliminate middleman dishes and serve everything from cookware.
• Don’t serve dinner before 2 p.m. to give you plenty of prep time.

Before you Begin Cooking:
• Make a timeline.
• Gather all items needed.
• Consider a grocery store pick-up or delivery service.

While Cooking:
• Sit as much as possible.
• Take rest breaks.
• Use lightweight utensils and cookware.
• Use electric mixers, can openers, scissors, jar openers, microwaves, and slow cookers.
• Use an apron with pockets to store frequently used items.
• Line pans with double thickness aluminum foil so you will have less scrubbing to do later.
• Slide pots and pans across the counter instead of picking them up.

Occupational therapists are skilled at helping people find ways to be as independent as possible, while not exhausting them in the process. Click here to learn more about occupational therapy.

If you or a loved one needs help working on any of the skills necessary to enjoy a holiday meal, Sheltering Arms can help! Click here or call (804) 764-1000 to schedule an appointment with one of our occupational therapists today.