I've started Christmas planning. Even I'm surprised! But I am excited. Apparently, I'm motivated by people and their brilliant blog ideas. I'm reading on that is doing quite a bit of holiday preparation in November to have a less stressful Christmas season. I've been doing better every year with getting the stress lower. I decided I might as well start planning.
I have been planning all year because I'm saving cash each month for Christmas gifts.
This month, I'm going to get gift ideas pinned down (and hopefully all shopped for). My girls seem to have very easy ideas for me this year, and I have a good one for my husband as well. It then becomes the extended family!
I will gather addresses and determine a Christmas card list. I have already purchased cards on clearance last year and just purchased stamps today. I will either write a simple letter, or take a photo of our family, girls or cats. If I go with a picture, I will order before the month ends.
I will plan holiday baking that is outside my normal cooking and baking. Some will be for our family to eat and some will be to take to work, and donate to a cookie fundraiser in early December. I will also make a list of all ingredients for these. I will even shop for these items before the end of November, preferably before the Thanksgiving shoppers invade the store.
I will buy gift wrap and supplies if needed. These means I will be pulling out the current wrapping paper, bows and bags to see what I really have. I'm pretty sure I'm good on gift bags. I may need one or two rolls of paper for the larger gifts. I will also check on tape and gift tags.
It generally doesn't take me too long to gift wrap. And I actually like that part! It is fun. I will likely wrap once December rolls around, but if you dread it, you may consider wrapping a portion of the gifts you have once each week. Keep your supplies all in one place all season, so it isn't a chore to get started each time.
I will meal plan. I do a pretty good job of planning meals by the week, but the holidays are stressful and that chore just adds more on. I will spend some time this month meal planning for December, doing my best to take into consideration what activities we have planned. I may make an effort to double up on some soups or other items I can freeze and thaw later.
The Merry Little Christmas Project page on Facebook indicated that the November planning for Christmas can take as little as 20 minutes a day. I agree this is doable. Maybe longer on weekends if shopping is in order. I plan to use 20 minutes of my day today to make the baking ingredient list and make a final calendar plan of my 20 minute tasks that will help me this November make Christmas a little less stressful!
Here is to getting Christmas organized!! Do you have a way to keep track of your holiday tasks? How far ahead do you plan for Christmas or any other holiday?