Wrapped and Done by December One! Early Holiday Prep

No one wants to hear there are only 165 days until Christmas, right? Last year I decided I wanted to be prepped and done by December first in 2014. As in, decorated, cards sent, presents wrapped done. That way I could focus more on Christmas and serving others. I also wanted to simplify.

So I've already started. I know, your kids haven't even gone back to school and the super early Halloween decor is out at Hobby Lobby but hear me out! Don't you want a holiday where you are focused on what matters? Do you want to spread out the cost of the holiday expenses? Do you have two hours a week to start your preparations? I think you do!

So how do you get started? First make a list of the big projects you complete before Christmas. Here are some ideas: Gifts, Cards, Decorating, Baking, Scheduling, Traveling, Entertaining

Then break down the project like I did for cards:

Cards-this always takes a long time for me
1. Schedule a photo shoot with your favorite photographer. (Do it now! The fall the busiest time for photographers and slots full up. This is something you want to do early! Or, look over the year and select a family portrait to send with your card.)
2. Make a list of who you want to send Christmas cards to. Or look over your list from last year. Optional: pear down the list. 
3. Gather addresses/Verify addresses you already have. 
4. Purchase/make cards. If you make cards, start with PLENTY of time in advance!
5. Purchase stamps. (They are already available and easily ordered online and sent to your house!)
6. Stuff, address and stamp cards. I suggest doing this while watching your favorite movie or show.
7. Drop them in the mail at the end of November.

Then assign tasks due dates, breaking them down into smaller pieces, like this:

August 25: Make appointment with photographer
August: 30: List of addresses updated and completed
September 5: Purchase stamps
September 10: Photo shoot!
September 20: Order stamps
September 30: Select Prints, order cards.
October 10: Address cards.
October 15: Keep addressing cards (It takes me a long time!)
October 20: Stamp cards---you're done!
November 30: Drop cards in the mail!

I'm excited to try to read this goal! I'll be talking about other tips and ideas to make your holiday season simpler in upcoming posts!

Merry Christmas!

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