Saturday, October 23, 2010

Advance planning -- the short version

After I finished writing the last post, I realized that it was really long and wordy and perhaps my point was lost.  So here's the short version, for any explanations you'll have to slog through the long one.

To make Christmas enjoyable, you need to start planning now.  Steps to make that happen:

  • Sit down with your spouse, older children, and a calendar and block out dates in December RIGHT NOW!  Plan what you would like to do as a family and put it on the calendar.  This is the only way to make sure everyone will be free
  • Consider blocking out dates just for everyone to stay home and enjoy each other's company.  Christmas is a busy season and you don't have to be going, going, going all the time.
  • If you have been buying gifts throughout the year, now is the time to inventory them.  See what you have before you buy more.
  • Plan what you still need to get and write it down (and then carefully hide the list!)  How many gifts does each person get?  What are they (or types of things) are they?  Do they need to be made or purchased?  What supplies do you need to make them?  Where will you purchase them?  What is your timeline?  It might help to have a special holiday planning calendar where you put target dates to have things done by.  My goal is to have all Christmas shopping done by Thanksgiving.
  • How do you do sibling gifts?  Does each child make/buy something for everyone?  Do you draw names?  Do it now.  I find planning for children to make gifts for others to be as labor intensive as any gift preparation I do for them.  It helps to start making plans now even if the children won't be working on it 'till December.
The key to all of this is to start your thinking and planning early... even if you don't want to or don't like to.  Come December, you'll be glad you did.


susieloulou said...

My mom used to write her list in shorthand, she learned it in high school. I write mine in Greek, at least Greek characters, but darn it, some of my kids are learning them :-(

thecurryseven said...

I love it!


Christie DeSilva said...

You know, if my children were asked why we homeschool, I don't even know if I would have a succinct answer. He homeschool for SO many reasons, and the longer we homeschool, the more reasons we have. I used to have a pat answer when people asked me, "We have explored all of the options carefully, and are confident that this is the best decision for our family and what the Lord desires of us." But now, I prefer the humor route. Eases the tension. I answer with a quick, "We like to train them into the cult young." I think I'll teach my kids to do the same, with a bink wink and a smile afterwards. ;)

Christie DeSilva said...

How I got this comment on the wrong thread, I do not know. I must have had two windows open at once. ;) Silly homeschooler. ;) I often wonder, when I make glarilgly stupid and embarrassing mistakes, if people are thinking..."and she homeschools?" ;)

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