I love the Holidays. The smell of Cinnamon, Nutmeg and Cocoa all swirled together on a magical breeze from room to room until it touches the frosty air let in by red cheeked giggling children dusting off the quickly melting snow. There is nothing more beautiful than the world’s bright face that beams of thankfulness of humility during this time of year, as if all the busy rushing and stress never existed.
Before the sun sets on these last days of Autumn that only seemed to have begun, I wanted to share some quick Holiday Planning Tips that wouldn’t hurt getting together early or at least setting aside as a reminder.
1) Don’t Forget Holiday Cards!
I have in the last few years forgotten to get cards for the Holidays only to remember when it’s much to late to send them. But you know how it feels when you get a card in the mail, especially by someone that you didn’t think would remember. Your face lights up and you take that special card and set it on the mantel, on the table or window sill. One day I even pinned them up next to the tree, the ones with shimmer on them sparkling in the dawn light. It’s a wonderful thoughtful thing that is easily forgotten and yet one of the best things you can give.
Storkie Holiday Cards has a wonderful selection of unique holiday cards, my favorite being the old classics with the frosty sparkling cabins and lighthouses. They give off this warm remembered beauty of winter. However, they do have more Modern, Religious and Photo Cards & Magnets for a more personalized memory (which are really great for relatives that don’t get to see you very often)!
2) Shop Early Sales – Recycle!
After Halloween in a few weeks all the stores will start to open up their Holiday shelves filled with gift wraps, tissues, ribbons, labels, etc. Most of which will be at discounted prices because it’s too early in the season. Watch for these sales! As it gets closer to Christmas they’ll shoot up dramatically and I’d rather get a Walgreens discount on B1G2 Free wrapping paper than pay $6-10 full price.
Also, if you have any parties before the Holidays and get gifts with tissue paper, bags, ribbons, etc. SAVE THEM, it can all be reused for the Holidays! As long as it doesn’t say Happy Birthday directly, you don’t have to exactly have candles and snow on the package. Especially with bags, gift bags are $3-10 and you can save a LOT of money reusing them.
3) Find Natural Decorations!
Something fun you can do with your kids now that it’s Autumn is gather natural decor outside for the coming Holidays!
- Go out in search of Pine Cones that you can tie up with Cinnamon Sticks or frost with Glitter for Christmas.
- Find brightly colored leaves and press them in books until shortly before Thanksgiving where you can create little Turkey hands (you know where you draw around your fingers!) and glue the pressed leaves as wings!
- Get beautiful clean branches and place them in a tall colored vase, add a ribbon or two or glaze them over with glue glitter for a beautiful winter effect!
I swear I didn’t sleep for two months last year. I was up at the break of dawn searching for deals and then down so late that it’s amazing I got 4 hours of sleep. Between the planning, cooking, attending, shopping, wrapping, coloring, etc… I was overworked, over-stressed and almost out of spirit before the Holidays even came. You aren’t doing anyone any favors pushing yourself to the limits. Don’t forget to get some sleep, some rest in the afternoon if you are a busy Stay-at-Home Mom like I am (we do get busy!) and breath. That deal you found, there will be another one. Those recipes can be found tomorrow. You can ask others to help you with cooking without losing the pride of making the meal. The Holidays are for you to enjoy too.9) Don’t Forget To Thaw the Turkey!
I have to have this timer go off to remind me of this. I was late one year and spent hours standing over a sink and turning the turkey over every 30 min in cool water because the store was all out! DO NOT FORGET to get that turkey in the fridge 3 Days before to Thaw (or less depending on size, check the packaging). And if you are as bad as I am, set your phone to remind you 3 days beforehand to get that Turkey out! (This applies for both Holidays and also Ham.)
10) Remember What It’s All About.
With everything going on during the Holidays, sometimes it’s easy to forget what it is all about. It’s difference for each one of us. For some of you it is a reminder of a great moment in your Faith, for others it is Tradition and for me it is about seeing a reflection of Humanity’s Goodness and sharing in that great abundant compassion we have for each other and tend to forget about during the year. It’s about Family and generations, a gift from one to the other. And Memories… moments to remember until I’m old and my years have my memory failing worse than it is now. Remember, between all the stresses and insanity, remember what it’s all about.
I wrote this blog post while participating in the Storkie holiday blogging program. I received compensation for my participation. All opinions are 100% mine.