Make this holiday season more joyous by having an organized Christmas.
In order to have an organized Christmas this year, start by creating a December Planner. Your planner will serve as your command central for both the month of December, and your holiday planning.
By creating your own planner–instead of purchasing a generic one–you’ll be making sure that it’s tailored to your values and preferences. I created a December Planner for myself–in which Christmas is front and center–and I wanted to share it with you so that you can get ideas for your own plannner. Start by choosing a notebook or a binder. Then, proceed to create the pages that you’ll need in order to have an organized Christmas. Finally, embellish your December Planner your way, for a personalized touch (it can be elaborate, or very simple, it’s up to you).
Below you’ll discover the pages that I included in my December Planner. I hope that you’ll find it inspiring and will create your own.
Stylish Cover Page
Put yourself in the holiday spirit by creating a stylish cover for your December Planner. You can see my cover page in the image at the top of this blog post. I decided to use my planner to accomplish all of the following:
- Be more productive this December;
- Have a joyous and peaceful holiday season; and
- Practice my newly acquired drawing/doodling skills.
The first page of your December Planner, right after the cover, should be an index. The idea of adding an index to your planner comes from bullet journals. Having an index will help you to easily navigate your entries.
As you add new entries to your planner, give each entry a title and add the page number at the bottom. Then, turn to your index page and record that title and page number.
You should set goals for every month of the year, and December should be no exception. Each month I set goals for the following life areas:
- Personal Development
For the month of December I have running and weight lifting goals; an earnings goal for my blog; and I want to finish my goal for 2017 of reading “War and Peace”. In addition, I have the following Christmas-related goals:
- Memorize a Christmas carol in French (Petit Papa Noël).
- Spend lots of time with my loved ones.
- Stay in the holiday spirit constantly, even when things aren’t going my way or other people are being difficult.
- Do something Christmas-related every day–even if it’s just having coffee in my Santa mug and making my coffee taste Christmassy by adding cinnamon and dunking a candy cane in it.
Here’s my page for December goals:
Master To Do List
Before December begins, do a brain dump and write down everything you need to get done in a Master To Do List. That will help you to create your daily to do lists so that you get to everything that needs to be done during the month of December, one day at a time.
My Master To Do List has two columns: one for personal stuff and one for work-related items.
A December calendar is a must-have if you want to have an organized Christmas. A calendar will allow you to see the whole month at-a-glance so that you can get a bird’s eyeview of the entire month. You can also use the calendar to write down important events, such as the following:
- The day in which the end of the year review is due at work;
- The office Christmas party; and
- The night all the neighbors are getting together for cocoa and caroling.
Make sure that you stay on budget with your holiday spending. In addition to your regular monthly expenses, here are some additional expenses you need to take into account for the month of December:
- Holiday gifts for your family members and loved ones.
- Gifts for your employees and favorite service providers.
- Gift wrapping supplies.
- Charitable donations.
- Christmas decorations and lighting.
- Holiday meals.
- Party supplies.
- Travel expenses.
Allocate your money wisely during the month of December by creating, and then following, a budget.
Daily To-Do List
I’ve dedicated one page of my planner for every day of the month of December. Planning what you’ll be doing each day is key to having an organized Christmas.
Each daily to-do page of my planner contains the following:
- 1 Must/Do For Today
- 2 More Prioirities for the Day
- Other To/Dos
- Just for Fun
- Important Times
Here’s what my daily to do list for the month of December looks like:
Christmas Bucket List
Having a Christmas Bucket List will help you to make the most of the season. Fill your bucket list with all of the fun Christmas activities you want to make sure to get around to this year, such as “Make a Playlist of Your Favorite Holiday Tunes”, or “Go to a Local Production of The Nutcracker”.
Look back at my daily to do list page for December, and notice that there’s a space titled “Just for Fun” at the bottom. When deciding what to include in that space, I’m simply going to refer to my Christmas Bucket List and pick and item from there.
Here’s the page for my Christmas Bucket List:
Instead of a Christmas Bucket List you can create an inventory of your family’s favorite Christmas traditions.
You can get ideas for items to include in your Christmas Bucket List, or your Family Traditions spread, here:
- 25 Christmas Activities Filled With Holiday Cheer
- 50 Christmas Traditions for Having Yourself a Merry Little Christmas
Gift giving is a big part of Christmas, although they don’t have to be store-bought gifts. You can give hand-made gifts, and you can even give the gift of time by offering people to babysit or help with chores.
One of the pages of my December/Christmas planner is dedicated to the gifts I want to give others this holiday season. Here’s what my page looks like:
If you want to give your loved ones the gift of personal development, here are lots of great ideas: Holiday Gift Ideas for Self-Improvement Enthusiasts.
Stocking Stuffer Ideas
This year I’m organizing a small gathering for my immediate family, which will include Christmas games and making holiday crafts. I’m going to give my nephews and my niece a few small items for their stockings, so I created a page for my planner which I’m going to use to brainstorm stocking stuffer ideas.
Here’s the page:
My Christmas Wish List
Christmas is about giving to others, but it’s OK to also think about yourself. I’m getting myself a couple of gifts this holiday season, so I’m creating a Christmas wish list. Also, it’s always good to be prepared for when people ask what you want them to give you as a Christmas present.
Here’s the format for my Christmas Wish List:
December Cleaning Schedule
For me, a cleaning schedule is a must in order to have an organized Christmas. Here’s the format for the December Cleaning Schedule I came up with:
There’s a space for every area of my apartment, and I’m going to sit down and brainstorm the best way to tackle each area.
Watching Christmas movies is one of the best ways to get into the holiday spirit. The first item on my Christmas Bucket List is watching my 10 favorite Christmas movies (I absolutely love Jim Carrey in “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” and “Elf”).
On this page of my December Planner I’m recording my 10 must-see Christmas movies. That adds detail to my bucket list, which makes it easier to achieve. Here’s my Christmas Movies page:
You can choose to add a page to your planner for every item on your bucket list. For example, if one of the items on your Christmas Bucket List items is “Have a Gift Wrapping Party”, you can devote one page of your planner to planning out the details of the party. Add things like the following:
- Supplies (wrapping paper, gift bags, ribbon, scissors, tape, gift tags, and other embellishments to make the gifts more eye appealing).
- Food and drinks.
- Any additional activities you’ll be participating in, such as having a Christmas Cookie Exchange, or asking everyone to come wearing an Ugly Christmas sweater (so you can laugh at each others horrendous duds).
Christmas Eve and Christmas Day
Christmas Eve and Christmas morning are what all of the flurry of holiday activity leads up to. Therefore, I have a page of my December Planner dedicated to each. Here’s my Christmas Eve page:
As you can see, I’m going to plan my Christmas Eve menu, and I’ve left a space for Christmas Eve activities. You may want to include space for planning out how you’ll decorate the table for your Christmas Eve Dinner.
And below is my Christmas Day page. I have spaces for the following:
- Christmas Day Breakfast; Lunch; and Dinner.
- Christmas Day Activities
At the end of each month you should review how the month went for the purpose of constant improvement. Here’s the page I’m going to use to review December:
Other Pages for Your Planner
Of course, having an organized Christmas has a different meaning for everyone. As I said at the start of this post, your planner should be a reflection of what’s important to you. Here are some other pages you may want to incliude in your planner:
- Family Holiday Recipes
- Holiday Baking Planner
- Travel Itinerary
- Favorite Christmas Carols
- Christmas Stories to Read
- List of Christmas Cards To Send
- Room-by-Room Holiday Decor Ideas
- 24 Random Acts of Kindness Christmas Count-Down
- Christmas Quotes
Make sure to leave some blank pages at the end of your December Planner so that you can add any additional pages you think of.
I hope that the December Planner I created for myself has inspired you to create your own, adapted to your own needs. Live your best life by having an organized Christmas.