By now hopefully you have made your lists and brainstormed some ideas about food, decorations, activities and gifts. Make notes as you shop, to remind yourself what you found where as well a what you are not able to find. Week by Week, Week by Week Planning are the first two posts in this series if you would like to look back and check out the other lists.
Have you marked out on your calendar important dates, events and gatherings through out November and December? This is such n important step for keeping organized. Do that now before you go any further.
What about asking about favorite meals for the season? In Oklahoma, this week the weather is dropping down below freezing so crock pot meals and fall family favorites are on the menu. I already made a pot pie and some pumpkin butter. We had chili the other night. And, luckily I planned ahead because our power went out. But I had a beef stew in the freezer ready to go. I just have to reheat it on our gas stove. Great on a cold winter day.
Because I still am not perfect and still get sidetracked by life at times, I am a week behind in my posting. So I will post weeks 3 and 4 together. I have been spending a lot of time thinking about week 3’s list already so I am not too behind in planning, but in posting for you my readers and for that I am sorry. But week 3 and 4 should be able to be completed in one week. You see, I really so try to keep things low key so if I do fall a week behind it still is not overwhelming and I’m not pulling out my hair. The list is as follows:
- Think about what your ideal Christmas looks like. Remember this is not about perfection but it is good to have the big picture in your mind so you can plan round it.
- What activities are important to your family at Christmas, add to your master-list.
- How much emphasis do your Christmas activities place on the spiritual side of Christmas? How much would you like them to and how an you make that happen?
- Inventory your supplies. Check you pantry, decorations, wrapping supplies including tape. Even check that spot you stash gifts through the year if you do that sort of thing. I do and it is a bit of a joke around my house that a month or two after Christmas I always find a gift or two I did not give.
- Week 4 (which is this week), Start your holiday baking. Many things can be frozen such as cookies and pies. Even a few pie crusts put away helps.
- Make a list of toys, books, and clothes that the family would like. That way, when people ask what they can get your kids or your spouse, you can tell them at least one thing.
- Take time to rest! Do something you enjoy. The busy season is ahead. I cannot stress the importance of this step even if it is simply grabbing a specialty coffee or reading a good book. It is amazing how much a little self care can lift your spirits and make for a more pleasant you.
Let the Baking Begin!
Friday, I did some baking. I made some pumpkin cookies and some white chocolate, pecan cookies with cranberries. I froze a dozen scoops of the dough and put them in a baggie. They are ready to thaw and pop in the oven when I need. I also baked about 2 dozen to eat and give to daughters.
Scripture and Focus
I am still working out a scripture passage but have some Idea of a focus word that I would like our family to dwell on. Actually, I am torn between 3 words. Maybe I can just use all 3, who knows where God will take me. I will do some writing and reading this week in my quiet time to help me. This is not essential but is something I have added over the last 5 years. As I prepare advent and read Luke 2, having a word gives me direction.
If you have little ones you may need some help with this. Ask a family member to watch your kids for a few hours if necessary. Think about something you could do to bring you a sense of peace. What refreshes you? For me, getting away to a coffee shop with my books, pens and journal. Maybe it is getting your nails done or a new hair style. Maybe a long walk through a nature park. Take the time to care for you. You won’t regret it.
Ready, set, go. Keep moving forward. You can do it. Make your holiday stress free. Have peace through the holidays!