How to Prepare for Christmas in November

I can’t believe it is already November.  If you have been following along this series since September, I hope you are feeling pretty confident.  You have had two whole months to get prepared for Christmas.  You are way ahead and you should give yourself a pat on the back.  But….. don’t stop here.  You need to keep going through this month to keep on track with your plan of action.  Remember, we are doing this so December can be less stress and more fun with our families.  If you missed the September and October checklist you will want to check those out as well.  Let’s get started on this month’s list.

Ways to prepare for Christmas in November so your holidays are less stressful.

November’s Christmas To do List

Properly prepare to entertain guests. The holiday season brings lots of friends and family members to our homes.  Around the holidays I always have extra appetizers, desserts, drinks, alcohol, and a couple presents for children and adults.  You never know when you will have extra guests unexpectedly stop by. Being prepared is the best way I know to combat “surprise” guests.  If you’re prepared it doesn’t seem so overwhelming.

Purchase your family and individual ornaments this month.  Many families collect special ornaments each year to signify something special they did that year or to add to their collection.  This is not something you want to wait until the last minute to buy.  Hallmark ornaments sell out quickly as do the White House series ornaments.  Make sure you’re not caught waiting until the last minute to do this task.

Go over your calendar and highlight family traditions and activities with your family.  Make sure you do this in early November.  Parties, school events, and family traditions need to be put on the calendar immediately.  The rest of the month you can decide as a family as things come up.  Think about things like baking cookies, your annual Christmas party at grandma’s, the breakfast with Santa you do every year.   These things get on the calendar first.  You will actually see how much you do and how little time there is left once your scheduled activities are on the calendar.

Start decorating your home. I think it is ok to decorate in November.  I have to because I do a blog and have to get my pictures out to you guys. I also decorate other people’s homes so I have to be very prepared at my own home.  If you entertain over Thanksgiving and want to wait until after, then have your boxes ready to go the next day and have a plan of action.  Locate all the boxes that need to be brought out of storage.  Do all the prep work so the day after Thanksgiving will go as quickly and smoothly as possible.

Go over entertaining pieces and silverware.  Doing this in advance helps you see what you may need and what you need to purchase.  I somehow am missing a water glass from my china.  I don’t know if I broke one and forgot about it or what.  I always forget about it until I’m setting the table.  If I had checked my stuff ahead of time I could have ordered that one glass and been set.  Check obscure things too like gravy boats, butter dishes, and anything you need for Thanksgiving or Christmas morning.

Practice new recipes before the big day. I don’t know about you, but I always get nervous about making something new for the first time.  I’m constantly asking, “how is it?”  I need to try it out first and have my family give me feedback before I make it for guests.  You may want to look through your menu and decide that way in advance.  Think about things you want to practice and try on your family before the big day.

Work on your shopping list for friends and family.  You should have tons of ideas now for shopping.  You can make the most of Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales.  It is key that you stay organized.  If you are ordering a lot of gifts you need to keep track of what you ordered, what has already arrived, and what you’ve wrapped.  You don’t want anything to fall through the cracks.

We are heading into the home stretch.  Hang in there.  This is the month that really matters.  December is right around the corner.  The prep you do now will help you coast through next month.  Then you can enjoy next month and all the festivities.

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