Halloween is just a week away. After that, Thanksgiving will be here before we know it. Then we launch headlong into the mad rush of December.
There's so much to do as we prep for the holidays between holiday get-togethers, Christmas shopping, decorating, baking, card sending, etc.. It really can be a daunting time of year. To help you (and me) out, I put together a little planning guide to take us from Thanksgiving to Christmas in the easiest manner possible.
The first page of the guide is a place to record all of the things you want to do this holiday season. There’s a place to jot down all of your things to do, people to see and places to go. There’s also a place to write any notes relating to your holiday activities.
The next two pages provide a timeline of what should be completed each week leading up to Christmas. In week 1 you send out Christmas cards, decorate, plan your secret Santa, set up your advent calendar, and write up your gift list.
Each week contains the next set of tasks to prepare for the big day. This helps you spread out your tasks over the course of the month so you don't feel rushed. It also helps you remember what needs to get done.
If something doesn't apply to you, just cross it off your list. You are that much closer to a stress free December.
The next two pages are a calendar of the month of December. Here is where you can write out everything you need to do. You can add in holiday parties, shopping trips, your visit with Santa, and any other activities you have.
You can also plan shopping trips or set a deadline for your online shopping so you know things will arrive on time. These pages should serve as your month at a glance.
Here is where we really break things down. In the next section, you will find individual worksheets to organize your holiday to dos.
First up is a sheet for all of your holiday events. You can enter when, where and any cost that may be associated with the events you plan to attend. Here's where you list the office party, your friend's ugly Christmas sweater party, your visit with Santa, your trip to see the ice sculptures, the Christmas pageant, and anything else you plan on attending.
Next up, is your holiday party planner. Here we start planning the basics for your holiday party. The first sheet is the party overview. We have date, time, location, guest list, and activities.
Then we breakdown the menu, like really break it down. First we have the actual meal. I have spots for all the courses you might be serving and places to include who is bringing what or what recipes you will be using.
Then we have a grocery list so you can write out what you will need to buy to make your fabulous meal.
Baking has its own page, because well, it deserves it. The baking list includes all types of pastries, candies, and desserts you might want. Again, I provided a shopping list worksheet for your baking materials.
Related Post: Personalized Holiday Cards and Invitations
Now it's time for gift giving. First up is cards. With the cards worksheet you are able to list everyone's names and addresses, and check off whether the cards have been sent. Save this list and use it year after year!
The gift giving page is based on the sheet I use each year to organize my gift giving. I discuss it in more detail in an earlier post. There are spots to list the person's name, the gift, and whether it has been bought, wrapped or given.
The next page is where you can break down your holiday budget. It breaks down costs by category and allows you to track how well you stuck to your budget. Definitely use the notes section so you can make adjustments next year.
The final page is the Kids gift list for others page. Inevitably, friends and relatives ask my husband and I what the kids want for Christmas. We don’t want to tell everyone the same thing because then we might end up with 100 of the exact same toy.
I cam up with this worksheet to track what we tell each person the kids would want for Christmas. Sometimes when the person goes to the store, they get inspired and don’t actually get what you suggested. That’s fine too.
I have a place to check off whether the child actually received the suggested gift. If not, it can be saved for a birthday or other occasion.
To get your free copy of the Christmas planning guide, just fill out the form below! If you want even more guidance while you plan for the holidays, you can purchase my full 30 page guide in the shop!
This holiday planner provides an even further break down of party planning including decor, to dos, and more. There is also a section for household decor inventory and storage and basically everything you need to plan the holiday.
I hope you have a stress free holiday season! What are you most worried about regarding the impending holidays? Let me know in the comments!