Christmas is coming, you can feel it in the air; the weather is getting chillier, stores are getting busier, and prices are going higher!
Christmas is one of the most popular celebrated holidays. Almost everyone celebrates Christmas in some way, and even if religion and beliefs do not permit some people to, no doubt friends and family will reel them into the occasion with presents and an invite to a Christmas bash.
That said, Christmas does come with its own fair share of headache and anxieties; give the perfect gifts, throw the most awesome party, prepare the best meals, put up the perfect decorations – the list is endless. And now that November is here, the anxiety just keeps building. Perhaps you haven’t even started getting gifts for your loved ones, and it’s getting you into a panic because you just know the stores will be packed full from now till the day.
Worry not. It’s never too late to start (except on Christmas day, of course), and we are here to serve you with seven things to do to prepare for Christmas, starting now.
1. Create a Budget
The last thing you want is to go bankrupt after a holiday. Work out how much you will need to fulfil all of your Christmas list to-dos. Allow some room for miscellaneous, but not too much room. If you are planning on throwing a Christmas party, this budget is all the more important. Consider factors like your Christmas bonus, family expenditure, food costs, decorations and gifts. With a budget, you will hardly be tempted to splurge on an eye-catching item, and you get to save some money.
2. Fill in Your Events Diary
The days leading up to Christmas are a party-fest. Everyone wants to throw a Christmas party, so make sure you properly and appropriately fill in your calendar with these events. You don’t want to have your office Christmas party coinciding with your child’s school recital, and if they are, at least you know early on and can make plans around this. Remember, there is nothing like too much organisation in the pre-Christmas days; don’t be afraid of appearing mental, stick to your plans and see how much easier all your plans unfold.
3. Begin Gift Shopping
There is absolutely no time to waste when it comes to gift shopping this season. Starting early might guarantee you miss out on most of the end-of-year bargains and the Black Friday deals, but at least you’d have peace of mind and be able to get everything you want. Do you really want to be caught in the week-to-Christmas store rush? We don’t think you do. This way, you also eliminate the chances of forgetting anyone. However, if you’re aiming for more creative and personalised gifts for friends and family, there are many inexpensive DIY handmade gift ideas.
4. Prepare your Décor
What is Christmas without the lights, the over-the-top decorations? Keep the Christmas spirit up and involve the entire family by making it a fun DIY craft making session. This way, you get unique decorations, and your family gets to have that special bonding time. This will make for great memories and save you money, too. Since you would be making a boatload of decorations, it is best to start in November as decoration making takes time.
5. Get Recipe Ready
You don’t want your Christmas dinner/party to be remembered as the one with questionable, suspicious looking food. Christmas specials and cooking shows are on a constant loop this season, blessing our Television screens with awesome new Christmas recipes. Take advantage of this early on and plan a truly remarkable Christmas menu. Or, you can choose the easier way and hire a catering service.
6. Send out Invites
As said earlier, the weeks leading up to Christmas are a medley of Christmas parties and events. If you plan on being among the hosts of one of such parties, now is the time to send out those invites (or E-vites). Everyone is going to be getting invites to some occasion or the other, sending yours out early gets the word out that you have an event slated for so and so date and they need to mark the event on their calendar. This way you won’t get a lot of ‘oh, I can’t, I have something else,’ and ‘I never got your invite.’ Also, you get to know early on a reasonably accurate expectation for the number of people likely going to attend your event.
7. Make Plans for Extra Cash
Since the bills are just going to absolutely pile up this season, looking into ways you can make some extra cash is the sensible thing to do. You can organise a yard sale or work some extra shifts, engage in online activities like paid surveys or, you can even get your children to make some input by getting them babysitting jobs. This way, the entire family contributes, and you can have an awesome time the entire family enjoys.
Christmas is a once a year event, and this adds so much to the hype and excitement. Make yours a smoothly planned and memorable one by starting your planning in November and sticking to some or all of our tips.