The holidays just keep coming on earlier and earlier. This is a complaint that seems to be heard almost year round and it is not made without reason. Holiday decorations and goodies seemed to have come out much earlier this year than they did last year. So instead of freaking out over the fact that Christmas trees, ornaments, and decorations were out well before Halloween has happened, I’ve decided to go with the flow and begin gearing up for the holidays so I will not be overwhelmed when the Thanksgiving and Yuletide season are upon us. As of today there are only 8 weekends until Christmas and Thanksgiving is a month away.
The first thing I started was a list for Thanksgiving. Lists can be your friend. I had thought we’d be in the house my husband and I are fixing up by this Thanksgiving so I made up a list of guests and the dishes I would ask them to bring. I was planning on sending out the email invites around this time but I’m sure my guests would appreciate having plumbing and electricity. My list is still important though. I am collaborating with another family member to put on Thanksgiving and now that we have a list it will be a pinch more easy to get it together.
Lists can also be helpful with Christmas and other holiday gifts. My family was big to begin with but after marrying it got even bigger. That means more presents for everybody! YAY!! The not-so-“YAY!” part is finding out what to get people. Some people can be really hard to shop for. But never fear! There are many solutions to this problem. Turning to the web can help. Amazon has a wishlist feature that you can search and find gifts for them. Pinterest is another good place to turn. They might have a board that is titled “I want this” or something to that effect. Just search their boards and see what you will find. You could also go the old fashioned route and ask them or have them fill out Christmas wish lists. There are plenty of free wishlists you can print out and have family members complete. Another easy way to take the stress of gifts out is to organize a white elephant/dirty Santa game to play at your awesomely planned party.
In conjunction with lists you should also make a budget or budgets for all that you want to do. Being honest and realistic about what you can do is key. Not everyone is going to expect an amazing and expensive gift. It doesn’t even have to be a material gift. Calling a relative you don’t see much or spending time with them could mean the world to them. It really is the thought that counts. This could also be a great opportunity to make gifts. There are all sorts of recipes for food and spa products to make. [Like the ones coming up soon right here on the blog!] There are also great DIY’s for ornaments and other baubles to try. It can save money and adds a uniqueness that sometimes a store bought gift just doesn’t have.
I also wanted to gather my thoughts on decorating. What good is a celebration without decorations?! I headed straight to Pinterest, made a new board, and started pinning. Be careful to not go overboard with picking out decorations. There are lots of pretty things to craft, but unless you have a blank check and unlimited time you will get overwhelmed with decorating. To avoid this, set a budget and be realistic about what you would get done. It doesn’t hurt to use existing decorations you or your family might have. It will save you time, money and add a little more sentimental value to the celebration.
So now your lists are made, budgets are set, and you’re feeling good about the upcoming Holidays. There are all sorts of resources on the web to help you create a great season. You can also ask your family for help! It only furthers the greatness of preparing for the Thanksgiving and Christmas season if you do it with family. The biggest thing to remember is to have fun. This is a time to spend with friends and family. What makes the holidays is not how perfect you decorated your house, or about the best gift you gave. It is how you spent it with your family and the memories you made with them.