The holidays are officially in full swing, which means jam packed schedules, exponentially longer to-do lists, people to see, places to go and constant tasks that need to be done. As overwhelming as it can be during this busy time of year, it is important to slow down and remember the reason for the season: spending time with the people you love. We’ve rounded five easy ways to maximize the fun and minimize the stress to make the most of your holidays

1. Outsource Your Friendsgiving or Thanksgiving Feast Don’t slave away in the kitchen over classic dishes like turkey and sweet potatoes. This year, keep it fun and casual. Look for simple but yummy fast-food options like these party packs from Taco Bell that make meal prep easy – just grab and go! To really make Thanksgiving special, Taco Bell is also offering these fun sweaters from Tipsy Elves. Food? Check. Wardrobe? Check. More time to spend together? Check!

2. Stroll through your local shops on Small Business Saturday.
Instead of getting wrapped up in the madness of Black Friday, or shopping from your couch on Cyber Monday, support local vendors this year by participating in Small Business Saturday with family or friends. Everyone can get their holiday shopping done in a stress-free environment. Plus, you can take pride knowing you are helping to support someone in your own community.

3. Have a Holiday Date Night (with a little help from our favorite apps!)
Tis the season to enjoy a little romance, too! It can be tricky for parents to find a sitter this time of year with so many holiday parties and events going on, but never fear. Apps like Wyndy or Kango can help you find a reliable, trusted sitter in your area without the hassle. Once you realize how easy it is to find childcare, you’ll be able to plan some quality time with your S.O. without the stress.

4. Get out for a game night
It can be daunting to plan activities while hosting family for the holidays, but take that pressure off of yourself and leave it to the experts. Find a local escape room in your area, like the popular franchise The Escape Game, for a challenging but thrilling night out. A breakout room is a fun way to bond while you work together to solve clues and beat the clock to “escape” before time is up. This activity is family-friendly fun for all ages.

5. Plan a potluck NYE

Let’s face it: by the time New Year’s Eve rolls around, nobody wants to be responsible for planning or hosting another blow out party. This NYE, ditch the sparkly dresses, heels and tuxes to create a new tradition. We suggest a fun potluck that brings all your loved ones together without the stress and pressure. It’s the perfect way to end your year – and to start your new one!