For many many years I got away with a last minute approach to Christmas. Although I love to be prepared and stuff, I was the girl who would do most of her Christmas shopping December 23rd-24th and come up with fabulous gifts!! (at least no one told me otherwise).
But now that I’m an adult (I do forget that sometimes…) being a procrastinator during the holidays makes doing adult things like sending Christmas cards, getting gifts for others, you know–being thoughtful, a source of stress.
So this year, we barely made the requested dress code for my daughter’s holiday party (I didn’t read the cover letter sent home), and I forgot to give the teachers cards with their gifts. Part of me says, just let it go Ms. Perfectionist, but there is another part of me that knows it’s about better planning. I know there will be a time when kids are exchanging gifts and cards or baked goods, so I need to get on the ball!
And even if you don’t have kids, I’m sure you have holiday amnesia. We are stressed from Halloween through the New Year–but since we always manage to get through it, we do everything the SAME way the next year (or wait even longer)—forgetting how hard it was the years before.
My solution and my resolution for next year is to start writing Christmas cards in July. Yes July! I’ve been trying to get them out for 3 years now, and I haven’t. If I were to really take this all seriously, I would not procrastinate on gift buying, card writing– I’d start super duper early.
I’ve always had the mindset that Christmas shopping should be done year round, so I usually do that and have a gift drawer filled with gifts I find year round. But I need to step it up a bit. I need to give myself mooore leeway because last minute things creep up in the holiday season (unexpected house guests, needing last minute gifts for people you just met or found out are giving your child gifts!!)
So the solution to an easier season is to do what you can do early. No one will know if you write your holiday cards in July (just don’t send them!!). No one would know if you took Christmas pics in July ( I’m more diligent about exercise in the summer, no holiday weight yet…hmmm that may be a great idea!!) just don’t send them. Can you see my family traveling to some photography studio in Christmas sweaters in the summer to have our pictures taken? (well maybe we change into the Christmas garb at the studio…)
Ok, seriously, if you plan ahead when the inevitable last minute things pop up, the routine and time consuming holiday things are already done.
I know in July, I’m going to feel silly writing Christmas cards, I’m going to say I’ll be able to get it done in October or even November, but I am saying to my future procrastinating self: “DON’T WAIT!” On a nice hot summer evening, sit outside, write your cards and make your shopping list (rather than wait until the card ride to the store on December 19th).
I’m starting to wonder if this is where the term Christmas in July came from…
Well safe travels to everyone traveling.