Let me start by saying that I am not one of those fanatical Christmas countdown people. There, I said it. But I am determined to do a reasonable number of things ahead of time to prepare for the Christmas season because I refuse to become a screaming banshee by December 1st because I have too much to do and too little time to do it in.
I subscribe to a blog called “Happy Simple Living” and the current focus of the blog is “all done by December 1.” I am on week three, and I have to say that I am making good progress.
Week one was to create a budget and a gift list. Then I was to look at the gift list and really determine what was what about it. Perhaps I could pare down the list, or have a cookie exchange or some other type event rather than just exchange gifts because that is what is expected. Never really thought about that before – the expectation is an exchange of gifts, but what I am really finding that what I want is TIME with people. We all have enough stuff. I am working on that.
Week two was make a gift plan and start to obtain gifts. All gifts should stay within the budget and as many as possible should be creatively obtained. Great! I can do that. My son and I are making teacher gifts this week – homemade apple butter – and I will start on some other knitted gifts this week as well. Again, not so much emphasis on the accumulation of stuff, but more so on the thought and effort going into the gifts so that they are meaningful.
Week three was all about Christmas cards. Some of the suggestions were to set up a Christmas website or send an email. Another was how to streamline the Christmas card process. Whatever your choice, start now. Actually, I started this already. One of the lovely ladies that I Crossfit with is a professional photographer, Sabrina K Photography – she is awesome and her work is beautiful – and we are having our family pictures made for the first time in probably 12 or 13 years. So we are already preparing for our Christmas cards this year. All good.
I am feeling much better about this year already. Because of the demands of my job, and my husband’s job, the real Christmas part of the season always seems to get trampled by mall traffic, a never ending list of obligations, and the desire to have that picture perfect holiday. I want my family to really enjoy this Christmas season for what it really is: a gift.