It’s almost Christmas. I know you don’t want to hear it, but it’s true and procrastinating about it will not only stress you out, but will cause you to miss the beauty of the season. (Trust me I’m talking to myself here too!) So what are we gals going to do about it? I for one would like to enjoy Christmas this year without a ton of stress. I’d like to focus on Jesus, you know, the reason for the season. This month we are going to focus on 3 areas to Quick Start our Christmas. Then, on November 3, we will begin the 21 Day Organize Your Christmas Challenge.
Quick Start Tip #1: Start your gift list now – with amounts to spend.
Gift giving can truly be the most stressful part of Christmas and it really should be one of the most enjoyable! With tight budgets, picky gift receivers, and Pinterest perfect pressure, it’s tempting to put gifting off for the last minute. For all of those reasons, this seems like the most logical place to start. A gift giving plan will give you focus and help you stick to the budget.
Start by brainstorming all the people that you normally buy gifts for:
- Service people
This is also a great time to talk about expectations with those who are on your list.
Several years ago we let our kids know, early on, that our Christmases were going to start looking different. With four kids and not a lot of money, we needed to focus more on family and faith and less on finding the perfect gift. We now give each kid three gifts: Something to wear, something for fun, and something growth (education, spiritual growth.) We have a budget for each kid and stick to it. We used to spend hours opening gifts and getting unwrapping fatigue. Now, the gift portion of our time is small, but the games and talking part of the holiday are what everyone look forward to.
Maybe there are a few people on your list that are on there out of obligation.
What about having a conversation with them about redoing Christmas – instead of buying another body wash gift set for each other, what if you took that money and went to lunch together in January, or went in on a goat for a family through World Vision? Make new traditions with those you love.
Quick Start Tip #2: Grab a Calendar and Firm Up Where and Who
Plan where you will be spending your time – and with whom.
We have a blended family, so trying to share our kids with multiple other families has gotten complicated over the years. Even without a blended family, extended family and all of their extended family can make for some complicated planning. Talk early and often about plans for the holidays. Last year we had everyone on Christmas. This year, we will be hosting the big Thanksgiving feast, and will celebrate Christmas on a different day. Flexibility and early planning with keep you from tears.
Quick Start Tip #3: Sign up for the 21 Days to Organize Your Christmas Challenge
Starting November 3rd, I will be taking you through three weeks of Christmas prep. This is absolutely free – my gift! A few minutes every day, in November, will help you have the most peaceful and Christ-centered Christmas possible. Join me and hundreds of other women for simple ideas to pull off the best Christmas ever.
She and her husband Roger are the parents of four young adults in San Jose, CA. When she’s not dating her husband or hanging out with her puggle Jake, Kathi is speaking at retreats, conferences and women’s events across the US.