I love Christmas! All the things you have to do just to prepare for the holiday. You need to purchase gifts, wrap, decorate your home, prepare a meal. Wow, a lot! To get ready and not overwhelm myself. I make a list of everyone I need to buy gifts for. I make a list for all the kids, the adults, another for teachers, bus drivers and coaches and then a separate list for my kids and husband. I honestly make this list in October, just to have since we always have new babies in the family. I don’t want to forget anyone!
To make things a bit easier, I like to have themes for each group of kids. For example all the babies/toddlers get a blanket and book. The older kids will get a blanket and slippers. I do the same with the adults. Check out these Christmas gift ideas:
If I am visiting family I like to bring an appetizer or dessert. Something easy and affordable is the olive oil dip I love so much! Put it in a mason jar and bring along with a loaf of french bread!
I start decorating the weekend after thanksgiving. At the beginning of November I think of new decorations I want to buy. There are already great sales in store for christmas decorations. I like to enjoy the holiday as much as possible so I definitely make sure to enjoy a full month of decorations!
The month of December, start thinking of all the traditions or new traditions you will like to start. There only a few weekends in December before the big day so definitely start scheduling things to do. My husband and I double date with cousins to our favorite steakhouse every year for the holidays. It’s nice to have a night out without the kids. Although we haven’t gone the last couple of years, we love going to see the nutcracker! This is also a great thing to go see as a family.
Another tradition we do is drive around to see christmas lights while listing to christmas music! We listen to a lot of christmas music to get in the spirit! We also take advantage of watching as many christmas movies on weekends. What about making the annual gingerbread house! We get a different one every year and make it the first week of December. If you do Elf on the Shelf, start getting new ideas on where to put Mr. or Ms. Elf! Pinterest has awesome ideas! Also, think of a christmas family picture for your holiday cards!
Dinner I feel is a bit less stressful in terms of the actual meal because you don’t have to stick to the turkey dinner, like for thanksgiving. I know many do keep that tradition but I like to make different meals for christmas. I do keep lasagna on the menu as I grew up having that for dinner and really love it!
Start preparing early and you will have a stress free holiday!