Organizing for the holidays and after

Finding yourself stressing over the holidays approaching? Some people do more than others, I hear everything from “Oh please I don’t even want to think about it!” to “Yeah, I am so not ready”. I guess I straddle the fence a little on this cause I am so not ready most of the time, But… I do love to think about it :). I plan (in my head) exactly the way things are going to be a month ahead of time only to procrastinate and be stressed and rushed every year. NOT THIS YEAR! I have decided to slow down, not stress, and enjoy new memories that the year has brought. Here are a few things I have started to put into action.

  1. Started making list for Thanksgiving and Christmas on Halloween. ( our kids are bigger and don’t go out for trick or treating so I had the time).
  2. Each week of November start purchasing some items from your list. such as: Thanksgiving- disposable pans, groc items to store in pantry, napkins, etc.. Christmas- stocking stuffers, small gift cards, or one gift off each list.
  3. Start getting your recipes in order for both holidays. Several of your recipes for Thanksgiving your family would love to have a Christmas time as well.
  4. Simplify your meals, are you having a crowd? then set up a list for each person to bring a dish from each category. If you have a small family like I do then make something each person likes and have only one dessert.
  5. Take the help of ordering items already cooked, I use to think my family would appreciate it so much more if I cooked everything and made a huge spread only to find that they love me so much more when I am not stressed!!!! Most Thanksgivings family is watching football, playing games, watching the parade etc.. (or like my guys they go hunting in the morning and are home hungry).
  6. Make your clean up easy as possible: Start with a clean kitchen and empty dishwasher! that is important for after the meal, you can rinse and put them in the dishwasher and be finished! within 10 mins you’re sitting on the sofa with coffee or hot cocoa watching the game with your family.
  7. Have your tree up as early as you would like! I say this year my tree is up the week of Thanksgiving so we can enjoy it and one less thing to pull out and stress over after Thanksgiving. If you put it up on or after Thanksgiving, start now sorting your lights and ornaments, making sure everything works properly and only keep out what you’re going to use and take the time to organize your Christmas stuff for years to come.
  8. Clean out and organize that hall closet you really never use to put wrapped gifts, wrapping paper, and even small gifts for unexpected company around the holidays. Use baskets and bins to organize and be able to pull out what you need.
  9. Baskets are a girls best friend now days. Have several handy for last-minute pick up so you’re not having to go up and down the stairs a hundred times or even across the house. example: one in the foyer for shoes, one at the top and bottom of stairs for things that need to go up and down, one in a central location for a catch-all of things that you bring in or pick up throughout the day. Once you use this system you will wonder why you ever hesitated, when you have company you can always stash your basket in that hall closet of items that didn’t make it to be put away in time. 🙂
  10. Last but not least; make your entrance to your home warm and inviting, have a nice wreath, rug, plants etc… something inexpensive that looks like you spent a millions dollars and hired someone on top of that!!! 🙂 It’s not just for the guest it welcomes you and your family everyday you come home because your family comes first and deserves to feel the most important.
Happy Organizing, and please share your stress free holiday ideas!
*Photo Courtesy of Feelart on

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