Christmas Lists & Holiday Organizing Made Simple

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For the next two weeks, I’m excited to be partnering with Diane of South House Designs. We will be sharing and trading tips, tricks, and tutorials to help us all plan for and organize the most epic holidays celebrations. By planning early, you will have less stress and more joy.

12 Days of Christmas Headlines

Today is day 2 of the 12 Days of Christmas and we are talking about Christmas Lists & Holiday Organizing made simple. I hope you enjoyed Diane’s post yesterday about her DIY Distressed Wood Posts and Lanterns.

If you’re new to Living Large in A Small House, you will find out that I’m a bit crazy about lists and organizing. I’m also old-school in the fact that I love a paper list. There is so much satisfaction for me in crossing things off on paper with a pen. I’m also very visual and I need to see it. If my list is in a device, it’s gone from my mind.

When it comes to my Christmas Lists, I have made some really pretty ones that I can print out and put in my paper planner. Become a friend of Living Large in A Small House and you can access all of my printables.

Planning & Lists

Indoor Decor

Christmas Tree up as holiday decorating begins
  • Purchase any decor items that you might need for holiday decorating. Since I change the theme of our living room tree each year, I know that I need a few things to go with that theme. This year its simply going to be a new ribbon. I also cooradinate my tablescape with the tree so I need to plan what I need for that.
    • I also need to purchase my coordinating wrapping paper. I’m pretty frugal about my paper. I’ve used both white and brown kraft paper (art paper). I use ribbon and homemade embellishments to dress up the paper and match it to my theme. It’s a great way to have matching paper on a budget.
    • I have bought real wrapping paper when my theme dictated but I have found it at places like HomeGoods, Tuesday Morning and/or Hobby Lobby where it is more affordable. The key is to start looking early if you want something very specific.
    • If you are handmaking any decor or gifts, make sure you have all of your supplies.

Outdoor Decor

  • Make sure your lights are working and either purchase new or repair. Have things ready to go for that weekend in November when we get a little bit of warmer weather.
  • I order my huge wreath for the front of my house from the Boy Scouts. They usually are taking orders in early November.
  • I order my tree tops for my window boxes from our local nursery. If I don’t order them ahead of time, I can never find them.

Meal Planning

  • Plan the Holiday Menus – I like to do this early on so that I can stock up on items either for the freezer or pantry when they go on sale during the next two months.
    • If your planning any holiday gatherings you need to choose the date, decide on your guest list, plan for food and drinks and consider sending invitations out early. I have a four part series about Entertaining that you can start HERE. There are lots of great tips for entertaining both casual and formal events.

Organizing and Purging

  • Having those chores checked off my list, now I need to get my house organized the for holidays. This entails the following:
    • Deep cleaning of shelves and tables. Taking down all the decorative items that I intend to store for the holidays. I use my Christmas bins to store those items once the Christmas decor has come out of them.
    • Donating or selling items that I no longer think I need or want. This includes Christmas decor that you no longer are using.
    • Organizing and taking inventory of dishes and serving pieces for holiday entertaining. Also start a list of things that I will need to purchase or borrow. I find that borrowing is a great way to have what you might need for a one time meal without the cost.
Inventory of blue and white plates for the holidays
  • Clean and organize the pantry. Take inventory of items that I have on hand and what I still need to purchase.
    • Wash sheets and blankets if you will be having out of town guests. I do this about 2 weeks before guest will be arriving so that they are still fresh.

Why You Should Organize Early

When you are organized, you will find your stress level is reduced. I work well under pressure but I also sacrifice my health and well-being when I’m doing things down to the wire. I recently wrote a post about how to make a busy week less stressful. The tips in that post can also be applied to the whole holiday season 🙂 You can find that post HERE

If you’re not a paper list person like myself, you can use something as simple as notes on your phone, Google Docs, and Microsoft Notes can also be great digital tools to help you organize your holidays.

I hope that this post about Christmas lists and holiday organizing, made simple will be helpful to you as you prepare for the busyness of the upcoming months.

Tomorrow is Day 3 and we will be back at South House Design where Diane is sharing her beautiful custom Christmas Stockings hanging from a Birch Branch.

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Recap of the 12 Days of Christmas Making

Day 1 – DIY Vintage Lanterns for Mantel Christmas Decor

Day 2 – Christmas Lists & Holiday Organizing Made Simple

Day 3 – How to Hang Christmas Stockings from a Birch Branch

Day 4 – Swedish Potato Sausage – Our Family Christmas Tradition

Day 5 – Best Way to Add Fake Snow to Brighten Your Decor

Day 6 – How to Make the Perfect Holiday Cocktail

Day 7 – How to make a Christmas Sign out of Reclaimed Wood

Day 8 – We Love Our Frame TV

Day 9 – Charming Holiday Decor with Vintage Ice Skates

Day 10 – Casual Holiday Entertaining

Day 11 – Wood Holiday Buoys add Coastal Christmas Decor

Day 12 – Christmas Eve at Our House

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    1. Thank you so much Renae!

  1. What a GREAT checklist! Now if I can follow through, I’ll be set. Thanks Lynn for helping us all get organized..

    1. You don’t need my checklist – you are so organized! You have to be to make thousands of Christmas Stockings every year.

  2. Great organization and prep tips here Lynn. I haven’t started decorating for Christmas but you have given my mind a kickstart toward it! BTW, those blue plates are gorgeous!! Pinned!

    1. I think it’s going to be a blue theme this year. Maybe a little green and woodsy thrown in!

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