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Welcome everyone! Today, Sheri is going to walk us through Week 1 – List Week of the Preparing for a Peaceful Christmas series. This week is critical to getting your holiday planning set in motion. My absolute favorite part of this week is the Holiday Self-Evaluation. I always sit down with the entire family and discuss what memories and traditions we have that they really want to continue, how we can do better this year from previous years, and any new things we might like to add. Everyone always has a lot of input, and we often end up reminiscing over past Christmas seasons.
I do want to add a couple of quick notes about my own personal planner that might be helpful for you…
Every year, I print off a new set of Monthly Calendar Pages to place at the front of my planner. I like to do this to give me an at-a-glance look at the next 3 months. I’d also encourage you to purchase page protectors for your 12 Week Holiday Planner. These will keep your pages looking neat, and you will avoid needing to reprint all the pages every year if you protect them from the get-go. I keep my planner in a 2″ binder. You might want to go even bigger to allow yourself room for extra print outs from other websites or ideas you’d like to try during the holiday season.
Now, here’s Sheri to guide us through this first week of planning!
I am so excited to encourage and inspire you to get busy now preparing for the holidays, so that you can have a peaceful Christmas! Each week in this Preparing for a Peaceful Christmas series, you will receive Weekly To Do Lists that are directly from The 12-Week Holiday Planner.
Those of you who have purchased the Holiday Planner will have all the forms that go along with the To Do Lists. If you have not purchased the planner, then you will need to make your own forms or buy your own copy!
Print out these weekly posts and work on completing the To-Do List. Most of the items do not take long to do, and by doing a little each week, you are well on your way to a much more peaceful Christmas!
Are you ready to begin? Let’s go!
Week 1: List Week
[ ] Holiday Self-Evaluation! Complete the Holiday Self-Evaluation form provided. Now is the time to really evaluate what your family’s goals are for the holidays. Sit down together as a family and discuss what the Lord would want your family to do as far as activities, traditions, etc. this holiday season. Keep this form in a place where you will frequently see it and be reminded of your goals for the holiday season.
[ ] Make your lists of gift recipients – Using the Christmas Gift Shopping List and Gift Making Checklist provided, jot down people you will want to buy gifts for and/or make gifts for. Don’t worry about specific gift ideas now€¦you will work on that next week. For now, just jot down names! Once completed, file this list in your Christmas Gifts Checklists section in the back.
[ ] Christmas Card List– Using the Christmas Card Checklist provided, fill in the names and addresses of family and friends you want to send cards to. Once the names and addresses are completed, slide into a sheet protector and file in the Christmas Card Checklists section in the back. (Use a washable marker to fill out the checklist, marking on the sheet protector if you want to include a picture and when the card is mailed, so that you can wash off and reuse this list year after year!)
[ ] Plan out menus for Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s – Fill out the Menu forms and Recipe Cards provided for each of these holidays and file them in the Holiday Menus & Recipes section for later use! (See Our Favorite Holiday Recipes section for some ideas!)
[ ] List of baked goodies to share or to give away – Using the form provided, jot down a list of people you would like to bake for this holiday season! Use the Holiday Baking Recipe Cards to fill in recipes you may want to use for these gifts. File this under the Holiday Baking & Recipes section when your list is completed. (See Our Favorite Holiday Recipes section in the planner, check out Sheri’s Recipe Index or Amy’s Large Family Recipes for ideas!)
[ ] List of favorite meals to freeze for later – Using the form provided, make a list of some of your family’s favorite meals that you can make and freeze ahead of time! (Check out Sheri’s Freezer Cooking Pinterest Board for some ideas!) You can also use the Freezer Meal Recipe Cards to fill in some recipes you want to use. Having some meals in the freezer during the busy holiday season will be such a blessing! Just make a list for now, the actual preparation of these meals will be done later. Once you have compiled a list of meals, file this form under the Holiday Menus & Recipes section. (See Our Favorite Holiday Recipes section for some ideas!)
[ ] Holiday Wardrobe Planner – Using the form provided, make a list of the holiday clothes each family member currently has. Note any clothing items that need to be purchased and plan on getting those things soon. It is very handy to have this thought through ahead of time. When it comes time for your family picture, or a formal holiday dinner, you can quickly turn to this list and see what clothing items each family member should wear (so you can all match if you wish!). Print out more than one page of this planner, if needed, to include every family member.
Once you have completed this list, come back here and tell us about it! Let’s encourage each other to plug away at these “to do’s” now so that our holidays can be less stressful and more focused on Jesus!