You’re probably thinking, what’s there to prepare? All you need are some lights, a Christmas tree, and gifts right? Wrong. This would probably be the To-Do list of a beginner who has never prepared for Christmas outside of their parent’s home or without the assistant of their mother.
There’s more to Christmas preparations than just buying decorations and a few presents. In fact there are approximately a hundred and one things you need to do before the big holiday season comes rolling in like an unexpected hurricane. But since we don’t have time to mention all one hundred and one To-Dos, here are the top 20 things that should be included in your list when preparing for Christmas.
Top 20 Ideas for Preparing and Planning for Christmas
Make a To-Do List.
- Kind of like this one. It’s always good to stay organized and focused at the tasks at hand.
Create a Gift List.
- Who are you buying gifts for? If you have a budget, like many of us, then creating a gift list will let you see how many people your budget will allow you to buy gifts for, or how far you can make it stretch.
Create a Greeting Card List.
- Fortunately not everyone has to receive a gift and greeting cards are just as appreciated. This list can include out of state or even out of the country family, relatives or friends. You can even include your neighbors.
Collect Addresses from Family and Friends.
- This is very important if you want your gift or card to make it to the right house.
Schedule December Events, i.e. Christmas Parties, Celebrations, etc.
- There’s going to be a lot of events during the month of December and making a schedule for all of them not only provides as a reminder but will prevent you from overlapping events like your daughter’s Christmas play with your work’s office party.
Take Family Portrait.
- Christmas portraits are a great tradition in many families. Be sure to schedule yours a head of the holidays to avoid full bookings. They’re also great addition to sending your holiday greeting cards.
Send Out Holiday Greetings.
- Do this at least 3 weeks before the Christmas so everyone will receive theirs in a timely manner.
Plan Christmas Eve and Christmas Day Celebrations.
- Are you spending Christmas Eve at your grandmas? Christmas Day at the in-laws? Or celebrating at home? Decide that early on so there are no conflicts between relatives.
Plan Your Christmas Decorations.
- Decide on your Christmas theme and this will help you buy decorations that will coordinate well together.
Look Up Christmas Recipes.
- If you’re going to do a lot of cooking, then maybe a new recipe is called for. While your green bean casserole may always be a hit, try something new that you know people will enjoy just as much.
Browse Online or Stores for Christmas Gift Ideas.
- Don’t have a clue as to what to get your family and friends for Christmas? Check out what the hottest toys, the trendiest outfits or the latest gadgets are online or in stores.
Plan Your Shopping Days.
- Avoid the Christmas rush or join the crowd of crazies the day before Christmas Eve. Plan wisely.
Buy Holiday Decorations and Christmas Tree.
- The sooner, the better and the longer time everyone has to be able to enjoy them.
Decorate Your Home, Inside and Out.
- This makes a great activity for the entire family to do together.
Shop for Christmas Gifts Online.
- A wise choice for those who don’t want to deal with crowded parking and busy malls.
Shop for Christmas Gifts in Stores and Online.
- Early birds get the worm; late birds won’t be able to find a parking space.
Buy Extra Gifts.
- There’s always that “extra guest” or unexpected relative that shows up and if you don’t want to leave anyone out, have extra gifts wrapped and ready to give. It’ll make them feel special and you’re sure to experience that warm and fuzzy feeling inside.
Double Check Items Before Gift Wrapping.
- There’s nothing like forgetting to take out the price tag, buying a damaged item or giving the wrong gift to a person. Double check what you’re wrapping.
Plan Your Christmas Eve/Day Meal.
- Since many grocery stores are either packed to the brim or closed on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, it’s good to have all the groceries you need for your Christmas celebrations 3 to 4 days before the big day.
Always Keep Your Cell Phones Charged. ALWAYS.
- You always want to be accessible during the holidays. You never know if your relatives arrive an hour early at the airport and need to be picked up, or if your daughter forgot her Secret Santa Gift at home and you need to drop it off at school, or if your husband committed to a company party and you need to get home pronto because it starts in an hour. You know, things like that.
And this is just barely scratching the surface…