Kristen Bell reveals her ultimate holiday hack and the festive items she can’t live without

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Kristen Bell has a lot on her plate. She’s a mom, wife, award-winning actress and businesswoman, so she’s no stranger to needing a little help during hectic moments. This holiday season, Bell has teamed up with Shipt to get all of her essentials brought straight to her door the moment she needs them. 

Shipt is the same-day delivery service that lets you connect with a real-life shopper, so you get exactly what you want. Gone are the days of bad produce and wrong orders. With Shipt, you can get up-to-the-minute updates on your order and directly coordinate with your shopper. The delivery service is currently available in over 5,000 cities and works with over 120 retailers. So if you’ve been looking for a mini holiday miracle, Shipt might be just what you’ve been wishing for.

According to Bell, the service is truly the holiday hack that everyone should be taking advantage of.

“Around the holidays, the only thing that I will not partake in is the stress of it all. And that’s been a lesson I’ve learned late in life. I attempted to have my first few Christmases when I hosted, or when we first had kids, to be genuinely from the ground up ‘Little House on the Prairie.’ I was like, ‘I’ll grow the carrots we’ll eat on Christmas night!’ And it drove me crazy! So over the last five years, I’ve made a real commitment to start delegating, and I’ve used a lot of delivery services because that is a real part of delegating when you’re in a family — you have to have things delivered.

“And I’ve had a ton of experiences where I didn’t get what I wanted or just felt like, ‘Oh, this was grabbed wrong’ or ‘this replacement wasn’t great.’ Then, when I found Shipt, I realized it is like Tinder for everything I need out in the world. You get to know the person who is shopping for you, and you trust them, and they’re communicative with you. But I feel like it’s the greatest holiday hack because you can get literally almost all of your Christmas or holiday presents on it, [plus] also all of your food. And if you’re running late, you can [get it all] the same day.” 

When it comes to making the holidays special for her family, Bell sticks to the classics: matching family pajamas.

“I like event-izing things. I like months of the year to stick out in contrast to other months, so if I buy a couple of sets of holiday pajamas (and obviously I’m also including the dogs in that), it just makes me feel good. It just makes everything more fun.” 

And in regards to holiday traditions, Bell and her crew like to keep it simple. “Our family is so lazy around the holidays, and that is one of our main traditions — we just don’t deal with nonsense around the holidays. We spend a lot of time in our pajamas. We do cook together over the holidays, which is fun. 

“The one tradition I guess we have is on Christmas morning, [and it] came from my husband’s family. When you see the Christmas tree, everyone goes and gathers their own gifts. And then you start with the littlest family member, and they get to open all of their gifts, and you watch and pay attention because they like that. And then you go in order of age, so grandma is usually asleep by the time you get to her, but she doesn’t mind because she’s got a lot of patience.”

Bell is the mom of two girls and says that, beyond delegating, parents that are trying to navigate the holiday season with small children shouldn’t be “afraid to wrap up a banana. Wrap up a tissue box, wrap up an old bracelet that you have. You can get away with a lot when they are little because they just like touching things. That, for me, was the best Christmas holiday hack when you have little kids because they don’t care about the price tag. So you find their favorite snack and wrap up a couple of them under the tree.”

Shop Kristen Bell’s holiday must-haves
Courtesy of Shipt

Hearth & Hand with Magnolia Sugared Birch Candle, $12.99

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Credit: Target

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Kristen says: “At Hello Bello [the company she and husband Dax Shepard co-founded], we worked with Chip and Joanna [Gaines] because they designed our diaper facility that we just built here in the states. It was so beautiful, and they made it so fun and playful that I just started becoming obsessed with Chip and Joanna, and their candles are so divine. It was hard to choose [a favorite], but the Sugared Birch is delicious.”

LEGO Classic Large Creative Brick Box, $37.99 (Orig. $43.99)

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Credit: Target

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Kristen says: “Legos are really our fifth family members. My daughters could not live without Legos. They’re constantly building their Legos everywhere, and they free build, so they constantly need new sets because they’re extending the world. It’s a present that I feel very confident in purchasing because it’s expanding their brain. They’re looking at architecture and color coordination and pattern recognition when they’re building, so Legos are a very big deal.”

Glick’s Greenhouse Live Succulent Planter, $26.99

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Kristen says: “For me, [my go-to host gift is] a plant. Flowers are normally the thing, but I get frustrated with how quickly they die. [But with this longer-lasting plant], months later, when they look at it, they remember that you brought it. So I will usually bring some sort of little succulent or something!”

Coolhaus Classic Vanilla Ice Cream Sandwiches, $7.99

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Spindrift Sparkling Water, Pack of 20, $21.99

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Credit: Amazon

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This Saves Lives Kids Snack Bar, S’mores Blast, 5 ct, $4.46

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Kristen says: “Our family in general, all year long, goes through a lot of Spindrift and a lot of This Bar Saves Lives and a fair amount of Coolhaus Ice Cream because it’s the most delicious treat.”

Want to try Shipt for yourself? Right now, you can score $20 off your first order of $50 or more when you use code HOLIDAY20 at checkout.

This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.

If you liked this story, check out matching family pajamas from Walmart that are perfect for the holidays.

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