"Wait a minute", you ask, "in past postings you made fun of the early arrival of Christmas decorations in stores and the playing of Christmas music and TV specials the day after Halloween. And now you are handing out holiday survival tips."
Yes sirree! Though one can hear Jingle Bells too many times one cannot prepare soon enough.
Just like I said, plan early. Hosting a cookie exchange, plan now. Office party to attend, shop now for the perfect outfit. Family dinner to organize, start now. Get the idea? However there is one exemption, if you are hosting Thanksgiving Dinner plan that first.
Start Shopping in January
This goes along with the above suggestion. January is a great time to stock up on Christmas cards, thank you cards, ornaments given as gifts, decorations, .... Sales baby! Some people will even start shopping for gifts in January. I usually start in August and September, if I start too soon I misplace the gifts or change my mind. Leading up to Black Friday great deals can be found, and sometimes better then Black Friday deals. And then, set a date to stop the shopping, "all trips to the store must be completed by December 10th." Yeah right, like that will happen. Exactly, it won't happen, but you will make a lot fewer trips after December 10th (or whatever date you pick) if you organize your trips.
Close Your Calendar
There comes a point when you can't accept anymore invitations, there are only so many hours in the day. So before your household melts down from party overload JUST SAY NO to new invitations. Let's face it, most of us know what events are happening for the month of December. OK, maybe not everyone, sorry my life is just that boring. As best as some of you "swing by the seat of your pants" people can do, plot your celebrations at the beginning of the month, prioritize your events, and then ... say it with me ... JUST SAY NO.
Clean in November and January
Give your house a good clean now, and then apart from tidying and swishing the toilet bowl (with a brush people), don't worry about the house until January. Put aside any house projects. (Though I may try to paint the bedroom while Hubby is home over the holidays ... hmmm, stay tuned for me losing my mind.) This is not the time to clean out the closets, or play room for that matter. Purge the play room now, and save the closets till after Christmas.
Pack up the first week in January
Pack it up and store it away, the sooner the better. Don't wait for Little Christmas, (I have no idea either, anyone, anyone?) or Valentine's day. If you so desire you can even start cleaning up the minute the last guest leaves Christmas Dinner. My limit is New Year's Day, by that point it is time for the house, and us, to return to our regularly scheduled lives.
Take a deep breath and enjoy the next few months. To enjoy more Works-For-Me-Wednesday ideas head over to Rocks in my Dryer.