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20 Holiday Time-Savers

Veer

Be prepared for spur-of-the-moment company
Be prepared for spur-of-the-moment company

Don't let your family attack the homemade fudge or cookies your neighbor gave you. Hide the goodies and serve 'em to your guests (who may assume they came from your kitchen).

Got a sink full of dishes—and a full dishwasher? Pop the dirty plates in the oven till your friends are gone.

Steer everyone to the room that sees the least kid traffic. Or have a chat wherever you have the most of your holiday decorations: Those'll distract guests from the Legos underfoot.

Keep a stash of store-bought eggnog in the fridge, sprinkle with nutmeg, and serve in pretty glassware. You'll look like a festive, happy hostess—even when you're at your wit's end.

Next: Gift-wrapping secrets

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