The holiday season can be hectic and overwhelming but the end result is something wonderful and memorable! In some ways it is very similar to managing a big, exciting project such as a new website, which is where I come in. I’m applying my focus on dates, numbers, and details to the holidays. Here are my tips and tricks to staying sane and surviving the holidays.
- Check the Calendar
Still looking for the right gift? So you better watch out, you better get shopping, you better get shopping I’m telling you why, time for shipping is running out! It is time to get familiar with your calendar and counting the number of days you have left, especially if ordering online. I suggest signing up for a Shoprunner account to get free 2-day shipping from thousands of brands and retailers. Grab a 30-day free trial or sign-up for free as an Amex cardholder. (Bonus points: It also got me free Domino’s delivery yesterday.)
- Know your Budget
Holidays are rough on everyone’s waistline and checkbook. Define your budget in advance and look for gifts in your price range to avoid cringing and eye twitching while paying your credit card bill in January. Also keep in mind that the cost of traveling or hosting can add up fast too.
- Consider Creative Solutions
Some present requests will be outside the budget you planned. It is time to get creative. That means out of the box and off the wish list. Can you make something and give it a real personal touch? The thought does count. Two years ago I made my dad gingerbread cookies, because he was disappointed my mom decided not to make them that year. He was absolutely thrilled when he opened it. (And no, he did not share. I kept a smaller portion for the rest of the family.)
- Say No, Sometimes
If you are like me, your December social calendar is pretty demanding. Friends who act like hermits the rest of the year come out of the woodwork. These are the friends that ALL choose the same day for their holiday party. Do yourself a favor and don’t overextend yourself. It is okay to be realistic and decline some invitations. You can’t be at 4 parties at once. (Or can you? If you know the secret to teleportation, please contact me immediately.)
- Share your Agenda
Going to someone else’s house for the holidays? Let them know when your ETA so that they can get the eggnog/milk & cookies/latkes/etc. ready in time for your arrival. They might also like to know when they can relax, as known as, when you are leaving. If you don’t even know your own agenda yet, consider getting one of these calendar apps.
- Check It Twice
There are many things to get keep track of whether you are hosting and traveling. Stay organized and avoid scrambling at the last minute. That means making lists, even if you hate lists. You really don’t want to brave the grocery store a second time, lose your ticket right before boarding, or forget your favorite stuffed animal when packing.
- Celebration in Moderation
Just kidding. It’s the holidays; go to town! Relax, enjoy, and eat ALL the cookies.
Happy Holidays! 🙂