Tuesday, October 19, 2010

It's That Time of Year!

Well, it's time to start thinking about Christmas! In fact, I am getting a later start than usual this year. I plan to begin preparing for the holidays this week, just trying to accomplish a few things each week. I will post each week's assignment.

Holiday Task #1

Locate your Christmas binder. Dust it off. Spend a little bit of time reading your past year's plans and lists. Create the dividers or add the paper you will need for this year. Remember, having the Christmas binder will save you much stress! It is so nice to look back and remind yourself of what gifts you gave people in the past (so you don't give them the same thing again this year!), what foods you served at various parties, what homemade goodies you prepared, what handmade gifts you created, etc.

If you don't have a Christmas binder, now is the time to make one. Begin with a three ring binder, and make a cover for it. It doesn't have to be fancy, my cover is just a piece of Christmas paper with the words Christmas Binder printed on it. I made the following dividers by printing the title and then laminating the pages: Gifts, Addresses, Parties, Food

Each year I add new pages behind each divider, and I make sure I write the year at the top of each new page. Some of my lists and menus are hand written on notebook paper, and some of them are typed and printed out. I just do whatever is convenient at the time.

Holiday Task #2
Look through your gift closet, gift box, gift shelf, or wherever you have been storing gifts that you have been buying all year. You have been doing that haven't you? Whenever you see something that you know someone in your family needs or would like, and especially if it is on sale, buy it. It really helps your budget to shop for the holiday season year round. I try to keep my eyes open for educational-type gifts and games year round.

Take inventory of what gifts you have in your gift storage area. Make a list in your Christmas binder of what you have bought and who it is for. I add to these lists as I Christmas shop, and then I check off each item as I wrap it.

Holiday Task #3
If you are really ambitious, and you have already purchased a few gifts, wrap three gifts this week! If you want to wait until later to make the bows, that is fine, but you can go ahead and wrap three gifts, and then store them in your gift storage area. Don't forget to check them off your gift list when you wrap them, or you may forget!

Holiday Task #4
Speaking of wrapping gifts, take inventory of your gift wrapping supplies. Make a list of what you need: tape, wrapping paper, tissue, boxes, ribbon, gift tags. Hopefully, you bought most of this last January when it was 75% off, but if you are still lacking some items, make a list and begin looking for stores to put these needed items on sale. As soon as Hobby Lobby puts their Christmas wrapping paper on sale, I plan to stock up. The Hobby Lobby gift wrap is my all-time favorite.

I'll share more tasks next week. Please leave me a comment and share how your preparations are coming along!


  1. I am very much over the bows I make with wired-edge ribbon. I want to learn how you make your bows. Maybe Julie and Olivia can give me a quick lesson sometime!

  2. I have a small stash of some history videos for Jackson, a game and a couple of Melissa and Doug toys for Chase and Eli and some art supplies for stocking stuffers. That is about it! The older I get/the more kids/grandkids I have, the less organized I am! I do have some book ideas for the chlldren, but we have one more birthday next month as well that I haven't prepared for yet. I need to get busy!

  3. Seriously, Roan? Every year I tell myself I'm going to buy less for the kids. Every year I'm overwhelmed by the amount of stuff and trash on Christmas day. This year I really am going to buy less. That should simplify things, right? Maybe I'll give them all Starbucks gift cards this year. I'm only half-joking.


  4. I want to simplify this year...but I say that almost every year!

  5. We are starting to get in the Christmas spirit here. My middle child is working on decorating a 2 foot tree for our local library's annual little Christmas tree silent auction. All the money goes to the Friends of the Library group. He is making all the ornaments out of Sculpey and they are adorable! I want to keep the tree!

    I've also already started buying presents. I have one ordered for my husband and one each purchased for my kids. I already have my mother-in-law's present and the supplies to make her boyfriend's present.

    So, I'm feeling pretty good and looking forward to decorating the day after Thanksgiving!