Thinking about Christmas already?

25.8.15 - 11:36

I'm already dreaming of Christmas. Sounds crazy but this year I'm not going to tell myself it's crazy. I'm going to use it as the early alarm clock going off in Christmas planning world. Why do I never have a super fantastic hand-crafted advent calendar? Because I don't think about it until November 30th!

Here are ten things you can start planning way in advance to make December way more fun whilst also making you feel less like a moose for dreaming about Crimbo already.

1. Advent calendars - if you want to do one of those little-present-per-day things, now would be a good time to start collecting. Bits and bobs will turn up naturally and it will be no work compared to trawling round for 24 things within the right price range. I've tried it. Not only is it very stressful, it costs a lot more than expected.

2. Cards - I assume if you are a 'proper' card maker you'll have started on them already, but even if you normally buy a pack of cards, you could get some personalised ones printed at somewhere like Moo.com. Or just get your friend's and family's addresses into something digital. Cards are 1000 more enjoyable when you can concentrate on writing heart warming messages instead of copying out everyone's address.

3. Start your list - Santa really appreciates a list and you receive gifts that you really enjoy. Start jotting down or pinning things you like but are not time sensitive. Like a cooking book you fancy rather than something limited edition that will sell out.

4. Start someone else's list - this one is magic. Start a pin board for things you see for your family and friends, you will be so glad you did when you start getting stupid busy. Why do things get do busy all of a sudden?

5. Making things - not just for those with giant knitting projects in mind! Vanilla extract takes a couple of months - so chuck it in a bottle now.

6. Saving money - if you get paid monthly there are four more pay days before Christmas. Everyone does things differently but if you are a put it on the credit card type of spender or just don't have a plan at all - saving some cashola now will feel awesome later.

7. Plans - get your plans in early for the best turn out. I'm not saying invite people to you soirée today, but just think, if you were attending a Christmas Eve party, how much notice would you need? If you were going to do a cookie swap, how much baking would you want to do that week?

8. Traditions - is there anything you'd like to start/stop? You don't have to continue things you don't like (obviously) but starting new traditions takes a bit of thought and discussion. Some years feel different. The year my grandparents passed away we had a big family dinner at a hotel. I'll be honest, it was not the best Christmas, but the change was helpful and the following year we went back to our traditions with fondness rather than trepidation.

9. How can you help other people - maybe one of your new traditions would be to get involved in a project which helps homeless people or make a box for Operation Christmas Child (though they use them for mission work, so you may or may not be down with that).

10. Christmas in Summer party - or if you live in the Southern Hemisphere - Christmas in Winter party! You know you want to.

Merry Christmas ;)