Top 10 Tuesday: Holiday Prep Organization Hacks

We're coming up on the time of year when we all get to replace our regular anxiety with *special* holiday anxiety.  That to do list gets longer and longer as we approach December.  So here are my top holiday organization hacks that are going to make this season as easy and enjoyable as possible for you.


1. Start early.

I do everything as early as possible during the holidays.  Some years my shopping is done by the end of Black Friday.  I've also learned the hard way to set aside time to wrap gifts early.  Otherwise I'm wrapping them all up the morning we're packing up the car and heading out of town.  


2. Write it down

If I don't write it down it doesn't exist and it's not going to happen.  So every year I grab a printable holiday planner like this to track gift ideas, work parties, budgets, and to do lists.


3. Take Inventory

Before Black Friday hits, I like to take inventory.  Gift bags, wrapping paper, holiday baking items.  Because you know the grocery store is going to run out of green sprinkles and that you're not going to want to go on that December 23rd Target run for gift bags.


4. Grab some Bonus Gifts

You know you're going to get a surprise gift from someone you weren't expecting during this season.  If you're like me and want to play it off like you were prepared, grab (and wrap) a few bonus gifts like a holiday candle, cool six pack holder for a nice microbrew, or a custom label for your favorite bottle of wine so it doesn't look like you just grabbed it from the pantry.


5. Pre-cook Meals

I know that it's super easy for us to order out when we get busy.  Pre-cooking and freezing meals makes it so easy to grab something and pop in in the oven or crockpot.  We also use (and love) HomeChef and their 15 minutes meals.  Grab $35 off your first order here.


6. Increase your Oven Space

I had no idea these even existed.  Grab a tiered oven rack and increase your oven space on baking days.


7. Create a gift wrap station

I hate wrapping gifts, but it's so much easier throughout the season if you set up a gift wrapping station that you can keep up all season long in a guest room or a basement.


8. Outsource

You can pay someone to do anything.  Outsource outdoor Christmas lights, baking, gift wrapping, snow removal, grocery shopping, or laundry.  Then use the hour or two that you gain each week for some time to relax and decompress.


9. Recruit the Kids

Start a list now of things your kiddos can help with.  Then you hear the first "I'm bored" of the next couple of weekends you're prepared with something for them to help with.


10. Get some Rest

I'm a big believer in keeping things as simple as possible and getting more rest than you think you can afford.  Grab a book and curl up on the couch.  Take a nap.  Binge your favorite guilty pleasure TV show.  You're body and mind are going to thank you for resting much more than they'll thank you for cleaning those baseboards that no one else is going to notice.

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