A Guide To Planning Christmas

The Early Bird Guide To Planning Christmas

One of the most exciting seasons of the year can also be one of the most stressful. It's not easy to break old habits and simplify your Christmas plans but there are ways you can make it easier; the success is in the planning. If you want to get ready for the festive season early, here are five things you can do now to have a stress-free Christmas.

Write A Master List

Don’t try to rely on your memory alone; write a master list and get it all down on paper. Advance planning is necessary if you want a stress-free festive season and a list you can use to keep track of tasks, what’s been done and what hasn’t, is a great place to start. Write down everything you need to do to prep for Christmas including people, places, food, drink, decorations, activities, cards, and gifts. Depending on whether you’re travelling or staying at home, hosting or being a guest elsewhere, your list will look slightly different. Either way, figure out costs and a budget, make travel arrangements or plan for hosting.

Tell People Your Plans

Are you spending Christmas at home? Are you travelling or hosting? Are you exchanging gifts? There’s quite a lot to figure out especially if you have a big family or one that’s not particularly local. When you’ve decided how you want your Christmas to look, get in touch with people to tell them your plans and discuss arrangements. Come to agreements and make plans with everyone involved; confirm times and dates, travel arrangements and hosting plans. Grab a calendar and start filling in dates so you know what’s happening and when. You can use this alongside your master list to keep everything organised and without having to commit anything to memory.

Prepare For Gifting

We often feel obliged to gift things to people over the festive season; it’s a tradition that often goes unquestioned. We’re obliged to provide gifts for extended family members, partners of friends, acquaintances, co-workers, school teachers, babysitters, cleaners - the list goes on; and of course, there’s always the panicked gift purchase for someone who surprised you with one.

Gifting should be done in earnest. Reach out to family and friends and discuss your plans for gifting; set budgets or exchange wish lists, and let people know they don’t have to feel obliged to buy you anything at all. Ask people for gift ideas; get their wish lists and share yours. If you don’t know what someone wants and they won’t tell you, opt for consumables. Shopping early will give you time to be more considered about your purchases, allowing you to pick out something meaningful. Openly discussing gifting makes the festive season less stressful, more intentional, and a whole lot easier for everyone.

The Early Bird Guide To Planning Christmas

Create A Menu

Whether you’re cooking for two or two dozen, creating a festive menu will make cooking the Christmas dinner a whole lot easier. Plan out what you’ll be serving up on the big day, write a list of ingredients and when you need to start prepping. Having a clear meal plan means you’re likely to spend less, waste less, and be less stressed so you can enjoy the day without fussing too much in the kitchen. If you have guests be sure to ask for dietary requirements and make preparations to ensure everyone is catered for. Write a shopping list and split it into perishables and non-perishables so you can purchase what you need as early as possible. If you feel like you have too much to handle, ask for help. Just because you’re hosting doesn’t mean you have to do absolutely everything. Ask someone to bring a dessert or come early and help lay the table; have people on hand to serve and wash up.

Get Your Home Ready

Getting your home ready for the festive season is a surefire way to get you in the mood to celebrate. If you’re hosting, the festive season is a great chance to do a deep clean and a thorough declutter of your home. It’s a chance to refresh your interior style and create a cosy environment to relax in. When it comes to getting your home ready for the festive season, decide on your decor style. If you’re going to decorate, how will you do it? Will you get a tree? Are you going to put up decorations? Do you need to make or buy anything? Go through your festive decorations before buying anything new and check whether any lights are broken and need replacing. If you’re having guests over, get the guest room ready so it’s comfortable and inviting to stay in. Little things can make a big difference; make extra blankets readily available, create an atmosphere with extra lighting, and fill the rooms with spiced aromas. It’s all about making your home a cosy place to be in when it’s cold and dark outside.

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The Early Bird Guide To Planning Christmas