Welcome to Week Seven: Create Your Holiday Gift Giving Plan in my holiday planning series – 9 Weeks to a More Organized and Peaceful Christmas: How to Prepare for Christmas. This week we are going to start planning our gift giving strategy. By now, you’ve already come up with your gift lists (see Week 3), and you may even be done with your Christmas shopping. Now it’s time to start wrapping, mailing, and stuffing those gifts. You’ll also finalize the “thank you” gifts to give to those you appreciate.
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If you haven’t already set up your Holiday Binder, go back and check out the post from Week One to get it set up before moving on to today’s post. You can find it here –> Week 1: Create Your Holiday Planning Binder
Quick Check-In: How Are You Feeling?
Before we get into the specifics of today’s assignments, I wanted to check in with you to see how you’re feeling.
I don’t know about you, but I’m already starting to fill the pressure of the holidays. My calendar is filled up with activities, and I’m starting to wonder how I’m going to get everything done on time. The stress of the holidays is real!
If you’re feeling this way too, please take a look at my post 5 Self-Care Tips for Reducing Holiday Stress and Finding Rest. Keeping up with self-care during times of high stress is so important to your social, emotional, and physical health. Take out your calendar and add in a few “me time” activities.
Okay, now let’s move on to discussing this week’s assignments.
Assignment #1: Gifts for Teachers
If your children are in school, it’s time to start thinking about teacher gifts. Decide if you want to go with a homemade gift or if you’d rather purchase a gift. Either way is totally fine. And, I’m sure your child’s teacher will love whatever you choose.
We’ve done handmade gifts, chocolate, and tree ornaments in the past. Here’s a list of ideas I’ve compiled to help you plan your teacher gifts:
- Chocolate or Something Else Yummy
- School Supplies
- Gift Card (consider having entire class contribute for this one!)
- Hand or Foot Scrub
- Ornament (homemade or purchased)
- Picture Frame or Scrapbook
- Books for the Classroom
- Personalized Coffee Mug
- Donation in the Teacher’s Name
- Handmade Card
- Letter of Thanks Written By Your Child
- Buy something from Amazon (always a great option!)
Assignment #2: Gifts for Service People
Have you thought about giving a heartfelt gift of appreciation to the service people in your lives? Garbagemen (or women), house cleaners, newspaper delivery persons, gardeners, or others.
For most of the service professionals, a gift of money or a gift card is appropriate. A gift of money equal to one cleaning is standard for house cleaners.
You can leave a Christmas tip of anywhere from $5 to $50 for the other service people, depending on how much they do for you during the year.
We always put the tip in an envelope with a note of thanks or our Christmas card.
Assignment #3: Gifts for Crossing Guards/Neighbors
I’ve lumped together neighbors and crossing guards since I’d recommend handing out Christmas cookies or other holiday treats to this group of people, along with a Christmas card.
My children love handing out bags of treats to our neighbors, and I love getting a chance to chat with them.
Make a list of your neighbors, crossing guards, and others you’d like to make yummy treats for and start baking!
Assignment #4: Wrap Presents, Buy Stocking Stuffers, and Visit the Post Office
This week take out or purchase your wrapping paper, bows, ribbon, tape, and the like, and start wrapping. This is also the time to mail out Christmas cards, as well as presents to those that don’t live nearby.
The last part of this assignment is to make sure you’ve stocked up on stocking stuffers. We always include a chocolate Santa from See’s candy in our children’s stockings. One year, I went to See’s just a few days before Christmas, and they were sold out of chocolate Santas! You can imagine my dismay.
My advice is to get the stocking stuffers early! You don’t want to shop with the crowds the week of Christmas or find out that they are sold out of something on your list.
Assignment #5: Don’t Forget About Your Spouse
I started this post reminding you to carve out time to care for you during the holiday season. But equally important is to carve out time for you to spend with your spouse or partner if you’re in a committed relationship.
Holiday planning takes a lot of time and money, and keeping on the same page with your spouse will keep you both happy. Check out my post 10 Tips to Keep Your Marriage Strong During the Holidays for some ideas.
That’s it for Week 7. I’ll see you back here next week for Week 8 when we’ll get serious about planning for Christmas Dinner.
Until then, Happy Holiday Planning!
With Love and Joy,