Wednesday, 22 November 2017

Planning For Christmas

At the Gower Abundant Cottage,  we love Christmas.  We love the tree,  the decorations,  the present wrapping and giving,  the food,  the carol singing but most of all,  taking time to remember and celebrate the birth of Jesus.

None of these things happen by chance.  I'm not a last minute,  wrap the presents and plan the menu on Christmas Eve type of person.  Christmas Eve is when I sit back,  relax,  watch the Carols by Candlelight or maybe even walk to the Carols celebration nearby.  Infact,  most of December I sit back  relax and watch people go crazy trying to get everything organised.

As you know,  I'm a list writer and planner.  I shop all year round to make the most of the sales and to help keep my gift giving budget under control.

If you haven't started any Christmas planning,  now is the time to get moving.  Here's how to plan your Christmas celebrations

Presents -

*  Make a list of everyone you are buying for.
*  Set a dollar amount per person.
*  Review your list and cut back
*  Write down gift ideas for each person
*  Put the list in your purse / wallet
*  Start shopping now and look for ways to save a few dollars.
*  Make any presents you can
*  Make biscuit / cookie dough now and freeze into log sizes for future baking to give as presents.
*  Sew,  knit,  crochet or make presents when you get a few spare moments.
*  Check your wrapping paper,  gift tag and sticky tape supplies and buy what's needed
*  Wrap as you buy and put straight under the tree ( or hide them if needed )
*  Keep all receipts in a marked envelope in case of future returns.

Christmas Cards -

*  Write a list of people you'd like to give a card to.
*  Write a list of cards to be sent
*  Make or buy your cards
*  Buy the postage stamps to send the cards.
*  Write a few each night as you are watching tv.
*  Send any overseas cards by early December.

Christmas Menu -

*  Write a list of how many people might be coming.
*  Write out a menu for lunch and dinner that caters for the numbers coming.
*  Cut back a little on the food.  There's always too many leftovers
*  Ask family and friends to help out with the catering by bringing a plate.
*  Write a list for Christmas Eve treats and Boxing Day grazing
*  Start buying the meat ahead of time to freeze
*  Watch the supermarket catalogues for sale items especially snacks
*  Clean out your fridge

Christmas Decorating -

*  Dig out the Christmas tree and check for damage / wear.  Buy a new one NOW if needed.
*  Check your decorations.  Do you need to update or buy new ones ?
*  Decide on a color scheme.
*  Decide how you'll decorate your tables.  Have a look at what you already have on hand and use that first.
*  Wash the table cloths ready for use.  Do your table runners need a wash ?
*  Buy candles,  serviettes, cutlery,  paper plates and bon bons.
*  Check your extra tables / trestle tables for damage.  Do you need to buy a new one.  Give them a wipe over.
*  Declutter your home.

Color schemes for the tree

Table decorations using what I already had

Leftover decorations make great table displays

Decorating the house

Christmas Eve platter

Making my own gift tags.

Here are the links to other Christmas articles I've written

Are your Christmas plans under control ?


  1. Rebecca Finlayson22 November 2017 at 20:41

    I love this post. I also love lists and being organised. Especially for christmas.
    Most of my presents have been bought, cards are written, menu just about finalised, tree is up and the outside lights are all set up. Hubby is working xmas day so i wont have him around to help so i will definitely need to be organised!!

  2. You are such an organised person Wendy. I need to take a leaf out of your book :)

    Some great ideas listed, I will be saving this for future reference.

    Thank you and God bless,


  3. We put our tree up 2 nights ago. (well the 5 daughters did anyway!) My Christmas cash has all been saved up and we now do secret Santa across the family and I give each person $150. This is our 3rd credit card free Christmas and it still feels amazing.

  4. All under control. All presents have been purchased and I’ll be wrapping them in the next week. Last year I had made a note to purchase new lights for the tree. Tick, all ready to go. Fruit for the cake is soaking and I’ve noted the days I’ll be making the cake and feeding it etc. Food organised as we have started purchasing as we go.
    During the mad rush I too will be at home all ready and doing other things instead of rushing here and there.

  5. There's just the two of us so our plans are very simple & we ship out gifts by early Dec. No shopping to do at all. I make fudge & caramel corn for a family gift and send cash to nephews. We're down to our last two nephews out of 27! (After college, they get cards!!). I'm making my cards, as I have for....wowza! 23 yrs. now! I bought the stamps earlier this month. We don't do a tree, but our house lights are going up on Friday.

    It's funny/odd for me to watch everyone hustling about. I feel completely disconnected from the giant Christmas machine!! No stress, no rush, nothing. We'll do our Advent candles, attend Mass, watch a few movies, and that will be that.

  6. Thanks Wendy, Great post as always.

    Can't wait to go through it and check things off,

    Thanks again,

  7. Love your list Wendy. We have nearly finished buying Christmas presents. I had a few things stashed away too. I'd like to buy more presents throughout next year and save a little each week for just Christmas. A little planning goes a long way. We hope to relax during December too. Thanks. Rachel:)

  8. This is a great post Wendy!
    I was at the shops yesterday, buying new hair clippers as it seems our old ones need to be replaced (they are 10 years old), as I walked around it was nice to know that the majority of presents are bought, the majority of the food we need is bought, our tree is ready to go up and be decorated and I wrapped presents over the weekend.
    I have a list of the few presents we still need so I can buy them when I find them.
    As we finish school this week I’ll be spending some time in the lead up to Christmas making food gifts for the adults in our families and Christmas crafts with my kids (they are little) and enjoying this time of the year.


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