There’s no place like home for the holidays, and there’s no time like the holidays for your home to get a little holi-dazed. Sure, stress has become part of the Christmas and Hanukkah packages, but West Villages offers built-in features to make the season lighter and brighter.

The award-winning collection of West Villages’ nine stunning communities already feels like a year-round vacation, so with the swirl of parties, seasonal decorations, in-laws, overwhelming calories, the kids out of school for a few weeks … we’re here to help.

Simplify: Reverse-engineer the season. Start from, say, New Year’s Day and work backward to determine the look and feel of your holiday calendar. How many parties will you host or attend? How many guests will you invite? What will you serve? What about decor? Gifts? Entertaining the children? See that list already growing to DEFCON 1 levels? Stop. You’re now a step ahead of stress.

Focus: Decide on a theme and stick to it. “For example,” event planner Kristine Cooke says on social icon Martha Stewart’s website, “if cranberry is your common thread, choose floating cranberries and candles on your tablescape, a cranberry spritzer cocktail upon guest arrival.” In a word, party pros say, cohesion cuts down on chaos.

Sunshine fun time: There’s a reason Sarasota County attracts more than 400,000 tourists a year and why migratory residents are called “snowbirds.” Fortunately, you’re already in West Villages—or you’re purchasing a new home for sale here—so give your holidays a Sunshine State twist with parties at the clubhouses and parks throughout the community.

Ask for help: At West Villages, Boca Royale, the Gran Paradiso communities, Grand Palm, IslandWalk, Oasis, Renaissance, The Preserve and Sarasota National aren’t called neighborhoods for nothin’. Besides, you can bet your bows that as soon as your neighbors receive their invitation to your party, they’ll offer to bring cookies or a helping hand.

Music: Don’t forget the tunes. Create a Spotify playlist—or crank up this one—to set a festive mood. That goes for lighting, too. With Smart Home technology available in many homes throughout West Villages, ask Alexa to do the heavy lifting to adjust ambiance.

Live in the moment: Take a breath. Take a walk on the miles of trails throughout and just beyond West Villages. Escape with the kids to the amazing parks in and around the community. Stroll the Gulf Coast’s beaches—especially serene during the low season—within a few minutes’ drive. Take a moment to celebrate the season and Life Your Way.

Make and keep memories: Snapchat and Instagram will remind you how brilliant you pulled off this year’s holidays for an even better, less stressful time next year.

To unwrap the gift of West Villages, visit West Villages’ Model Home Centers, listed here. Or call the Home Buyers Information Line at 941-960-7805.