Yes it is time to panic about the upcoming holidays! 🙂 Today I’m sharing a few tips to help relieve some of the panic and terror this time of year causes. First of all, if you don’t have a large wall calender with all your family activities on it, get some poster board and make one just for the holiday season.
1) Grab your large wall calender and in pencil write down important dates like birthdays, kids activities, hair appointments and doctor’s appointments. These are all things that might get lost in the holiday frenzy. You made that dentist appointment six months ago, long before you knew when the school Winter Concert would be!
2) If anyone in your house is in school or taking classes mark off the last day of school for them. Or the last day of work. That way you’ll know when your holiday helpers will become available! If you have young children you may want to buy their gifts while they’re still in school. Don’t forget to mark off any half days they have!
3) Write in important family traditions or religious services. If you drive 6 hours to celebrate, mark that driving time on your calendar too. It’s time you won’t be able to shop, wrap, clean decorate or mail things.
4) I bet you’re already double booked on some dates, we are! That’s why I said to use a pencil. Call today to reschedule that dentist or doctor’s appointment that conflicts with Aunt Barbara’s Hanukkah party or Aunt Mary’s Christmas party. If you’ve just had dental work you won’t be able to enjoy the party fully.
5) Now that you’ve rescheduled your appointments you need to make any travel plans you haven’t yet made. Yes it’s time to book last minute airline flights and car rentals.
6) Finally make yourself a cup of cocoa sit down and decide how much you are willing to do this year.
–Are you sending out cards? Check your calendar to see when you have time to sign, address and mail them. Or decide that you are choosing now to not send out cards and feel good about your choice. Last year I made our Christmas cards, see photo above. If you plan on making cards schedule that time several days before you plan to sign and address them. Unless you are super organized and made your cards in July. If that’s the case set aside some time to figure out where you put those cards! 🙂
–Are you doing a Secret Santa at work or with a social group? What date is the exchange? Put it on the calendar. If you haven’t bought the gift yet, schedule a time to buy and wrap it.
–If you’re doing a Cookie Exchange you need to set aside time the day before to shop and bake. Pick out your recipe today and clip it to your calender.
–Are you the one having the holiday party? Decide on a date and schedule days to clean, decorate, grocery shop and bake the week of the party. Don’t forget to send out invitations!
–How many people do you need to buy presents for? If you’re in the US and have any that need to be mailed, check with the US Postal Service about their Holiday Shipping and Mailing Dates. You’ll need to shop, wrap and mail for those people first.
–Remember if you’re ordering online those orders need to be placed soon, to avoid being delayed by the crush of holiday mail.
–Are you hosting company for the holidays? Call and see what day they plan on arriving. Then schedule in your cleaning days and grocery shopping days on your calendar. You’ll feel less frazzled if the house is clean when they arrive. If you have all your meals picked out and all the supplies they might pitch in and help you cook them.
I hope these tips help you cut some of the frenzy out of you holiday preparations.