How do you get organised for Christmas? I have to admit that I revert back to my type-A personality when planning Christmas. We focus a lot on advent and the lead up to Christmas in The Mad House. I feel that by doing an activity each day we are concentrating on the mean of Christmas rather than the commercial aspect of it. However, in order to have the time to concentrate on this I have to be pretty organised and I live to have everything sorted before the beginning of December as much as I can.
Believe it or not, I have a Christmas Planner, It is split into sections and each year I update it. In order to make it even easier for me. I much prefer to put the prep in and have an easier Christmas season that we can all enjoy. I would rather work hard before for a stress-free Christmas.
It also helps to know that there is no such thing as a perfect Christmas no matter how hard to work to plan the big day. I really can vouch for this as my Mum died on Christmas Day and since then, we really have reassessed our priorities. I worry so much less about new toys, Christmas shopping and the perfect holiday decor and more about embracing any Christmas chaos and sharing the celebration with people I love.
It is a big ongoing list. This is for general things that need doing and I tick them off or carry them over as required. I add to this throughout the buildup. I hate last-minute panic and prefer to know what I need and by when.
I also list any important dates, such as last posting, local carol service and children’s nativities and also if the dates change for the collection of the bins over the holiday season and mark them on my kitchen calendar and diary too.
I have a mail merge I use for labelling envelopes, so I do not have to handwrite all the cards, but I do keep a list of who we send to and receive from each year and update it when I recycle any cards.
Presents and Gifts
- Not only ones that I need to buy and have bought (I try to but throughout the year when I can). But also a section for ones that I am going to make and the things I need to make them.
- I make a wish lists for myself and ask the family if they have anything they really want or need.
- I love making sure I buy gifts that the recipient will love and spend a lot of time thinking about the gift ideas for people and we make the wrapping paper.
- I also list where I have hidden any gifts I have bought so I don’t misplace them.
- I try and wrap presents as I buy them and also make sure I have gift bags for awkard shaped gifts.
- I also make sure I list inspiration for secret santa gifts.
- I always make sure I record what batteries I need to buy and make sure they are in the present before I wrap them
- I make sure our battery drawer has extras just in case the kids get something that I havent accounted for.
- I write a two-week meal plan for the festive season. I have my shopping lists here, recipes and also conversion charts etc.
- I also make sure I have any dietary requirements for any guests we have coming and sort out the menu and schedule for cooking Christmas Dinner, although the husbeast cooks it and we mostly prepare it on Christmas Eve.
- We are not Christmas Pudding devotees, so I make sure I have an alterative dessert.
- It pays to know the last dates for online delivery and a full list for the food shop.
- I order out turkey and meats from the local butcher.
- I also make sure I clean out the fridge and freezer prior to shopping and make sure we have space for the leftovers and recipes to make sure we use it all up. I am lucky that we have a small pantry and children that love nothing more than eating leftovers during the festive period.
I believe that putting a little planning in early means that I can enjoy each day with my family. We have our advent activity list and I do that with the boys when they get home from school.
Tips to make Christmas Organising easier.
- Declutter as much as you can before Decemeber. We would always go through toys and donate them to the charity shop. I would rotate toys and hide them in the guarage for a month before donating them.
- Keep your egg cartons, they are great for storing away christmas baubles and ornaments.
- I make sure we do laundry on a regular basis so it dorsnt pile ip.
- Wrap gifts and store presents as you purchase them, but make sure you label them keep a note of what you have bought and where you have put it for safe keeping.
- Use different wrapping paper for each chold then you will not get muddled up.
- Bulk buy stamps at the supermarket and make sure you have enough
- Share card writing round the whole family
- Use Scout post for your local area – it is cheaper than stamps, plus it gives much needed funds to the scouts.
- Do not get into the habit of giving christmas cards to the childrens school friends. We bake cookies instead
- Keep track of what present you gifted people the year before, you do not want to double up
- Make a Christmas memories book – so you can look back fondly on christmases past.
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