Now that Halloween is behind us. The stores and social media have reminded me that the holiday season is basically here.
While I don't expect everyone to start fully decking the halls just yet (unless you're a blogger 😂). I'm sharing 8 things to do in November for a stress-free Christmas season.
For the last few years I’ve been doing my best to follow the mantra that November is for prepping for Christmas and December is for enjoying it!
Before we start be sure to grab my new free printable Christmas Planner HERE.
It will help you with a lot of the things we'll be discussing today. Because it includes a budget tracker, shopping lists, Christmas card list, and more!
8 Things To Do In November For A Stress-Free Christmas!
1-Create Your Gift List and Budget
*Christmas Gift List
Shopping for Christmas gifts when you know what you're looking for and how much you have to spend. Makes Christmas shopping what it should be. Enjoyable!
That's why I recommend making a Christmas gift list as early as possible. You can use the family and child gift planner page from my Christmas Planner to jot down who you need to shop for (and gift ideas for them if you have any).
I find it helpful once I've listed everyone I need to shop for to assign them a specific dollar amount. Like for our nieces, we might budget $50 each. I find doing it this way makes it easier to stick to my overall budget and be more intentional when shopping.
Lastly, working on your gift list early gives you the opportunity to take advantage of big sales like Black Friday and Cyber Monday!
2- Purchase Christmas Pajamas (or loungewear)
You might be thinking, seriously Linda you're being dramatic with this one. I promise you I'm not. If you're on social media at all, you've seen how much folks love the matching Christmas pajamas or loungewear looks. Especially for kids.
I've learned the hard way by the time December rolls around trying to find all of our different sizes is very hard. Plus most of the cute prints are gone and its slim pickings even if you're ordering online. If you want options buy them early.
3- Start Shopping
The best part about creating your shopping list and budget now is that you can also begin shopping intentionally before the holiday rush. This also helps you spread out the cost of buying the gifts.
The basic idea of supply and demand will be on steroids this year becuase and everyone and their mama will be doing online shopping due to "The Rona".
Meaning anything even remotely popular will start selling out fast. Or you risk not being able to get your items delivered on time. So just start your shopping as early as you can and save yourself the headache.
4- Check Gift Wrapping Supplies
Even if you're not a wrap as you go person during the holidays. Take a few minutes to check your gift wrapping supplies now. In addition to wrapping paper, also take stock of things like tape, bows, boxes, and bags.
This will help avoid those situations when you swore you had tape but now you can't find any. Or unnecessarily buying more gift boxes because you forgot you had some leftover from last year.
5- Take A Christmas Photo
Taking photos for your Christmas card has never been easier. Since most of us walk around with a decent camera on us at all times in our smartphones.
So next time you're on a family walk, or the kids look especially put together. Intentionally snap a few photos that you can use for your Christmas cards. Or go through your phone, you might already have some photos that you like enough to use.
You can order your Christmas cards directly from sites like Minted, Shutterfly, Vista Print, and even Walgreens. Now all you have to do is address the envelopes!
6- Christmas Card Prep
Speaking of Christmas photos. Another thing that's great to do in November is gathering all the things you need to mail out Christmas cards without it becoming all coming consuming.
- Order/buy your Christmas cards
- Collect names and addresses
- Buy stamps (I like getting the holiday designs)
- Print return and address labels (optional)
Once I have all the above. I like to gather everything in a container or basket. So I can just grab the basket and address a batch at a time in those down moments like when I'm binge-watching my favorite TV shows.
Now the hard part is already done once you're ready to mail out your cards.
7- Plan Christmas Activities
November is the perfect time to whip out your December calendar and plan out your Christmas activities. I would mark our calendar with things like going to pick out our annual ornaments, a day for baking, an evening riding around admiring the holiday lights with cocoa.
Knowing what family activities I already have on the calendar makes it easier to know what additional activities and events I do and don't have time for leading up to Christmas.
8- Plan Your Christmas Day Menu
While you're obviously not going to start cooking in November. The earlier you put your Christmas day menu together the better.
It can be a huge grocery bill buying all your Christmas day menu items at once. Especially if you're hosting.
But if you know what you're making ahead of time. You can spread out the cost by picking up non-perishable and/or ingredients that can be frozen during your routine shopping trips or when you find them on sale.
For example, if I know I'm making mac and cheese. I can pick up extra boxes of pasta, or pick up the "good" cheese when I find it on sale since cheese freezes great.
This goes for baking ingredients too!
So friends, now that I've shared these 8 things to do in November for a stress-free Christmas season.
Do you have anything tips and tricks to share for getting ready for Christmas?