I'm not actually going to apologise for posting about Christmas in August, mainly because I've been planning for it all year and posted about making gift hampers way back in April. So nur.
I like Christmas (I actually used to hate it but I don't anymore) and like to make sure it is well organised and easy when the season eventually rolls round. My birthday happens to be just a few days before Christmas so I always strive to have everything done by mid-December in order to enjoy and celebrate both without worrying I've fogotten about something.
As with every year I'm going to post regular Christmas planning updates in the run up to the big JC's birthday, so keep your eyes peeled if you're a lover of the season. You can also check out my previous Christmas posts here.
If you want to start planning for an organised Christmas you still obviously have loads of time. Here are a few things to note down and work out before you can get started.
Where will you be celebrating Christmas?
Do you go away? Will you be travelling to stay with family? (If you are travelling how much will it cost and how far in advance can you book it?) Will they be coming to you? I know it might be early but if you're going to be lugging gifts across the country you may want to consider what you're buying and how much it weighs. Also, I just plain like to know where I'm going to be on Christmas day, I usually decide by about January 5th, but then again I'm annoying.
Are you going away, even just to stay with family? Will travelling further afield mean you need to book time off work? If you're able to (and I know some professions don't) try and book your time off now or at least bring the topic up with your manager so the discussion can take place with your work mates.
Who will you be buying gifts for?
Some families like to decide to only buy for children or to do secret Santa, so that needs to be decided on soon. If you don't participate in those kinds of schemes, now is a good time to write down the names of everyone you will be buying for and work out a rough budget of how much you'd like to spend both in total and individually.
If you're the crafty type now is the time to dedicate yourself to that knitting basket or what have you. No one wants to spend the 23rd of December crying into mulled wine because you still have 2 scarves and a jumper to knit. Mainly because you'll get all drunk and rowdy and miss a stitch then find yourself down The Trafford Centre pushing through the crowds of shoppers to find at gift at 9pm. This has never happened to me. Never.
Buying gifts early
Guess what? You can buy gifts more than 3 days before an event. Who knew? Get out there and start shopping now. Buying a gift or two per month spreads the cost across various wages packets rather than just
Do you already have decorations? Are the fairy lights working? Do check those now because the price of fairy lights is about to take a sharp leap upward as we head into the colder months.
Can you use the decorations you already have? If you're sick of the same baubles why not trawl Pinterest for some crafting ideas and get to work on those now.
Food and drink
Okay, sure you're probably not going to buy the turkey today but if you see a really good deal on tins of chocolate, a specific alchoolic drink you know your brother in law loves then why not stock up a little if you have the room? Make sure it is well within the expiration date. Also do only stock up if you know the items will be used, it is incredibly wasteful otherwise.
If you plan to give edible treats then get started now. Our blackberry vodka is already on the go and we're just about ready to make apple sauces and gearing ourself up for chili chuntney made with our home grown grub.
By the way I have a Christmas Pinterest board which you may find helpful and inspiring.
P.S. Don't even dare raise your eyebrows and say 'Christmas? IN AUGUST?!'