Not much feedback around here, but I'm still hanging in there and I have a good holiday challenge for all of us. We all hear, "Let's focus on the real meaning of the holidays, and let go of the material." Let's face it--we're not going to stop Christmas shopping, preparing food for Thanksgiving feasts, going here and there for this party or that meal. Let's have a better goal in mind. PLANNING AHEAD!!
Monday, November 20, 2006
"Ack! I don't have time to plan!" you might say. "Oh, but you DO have time to run around like a chicken with your head cut off?" Let's remember one word: settle. Settle down and start making lists. List everything you need to make for Thanksgiving and where it's going. Make a shopping list for all of it. Make a Christmas list for every person you plan on buying for--even little things, even neighbors. List ideas and items as you buy them. If you're on a budget, write down how much you're spending for whom. If you get organized with this, you won't end up forgetting someone on Christmas Eve and have to rush out to the gas station to buy an oil funnel and a Hershey bar.
The challenge lies in planning far enough in advance to where you know where you're going, what you're doing, and what you're cooking/buying before the last minute. Try simplifying by only choosing a few dishes or recipes to prepare for each get-together--especially if you're NOT hosting--just one will usually do. Christmas shopping can be simplified by buying online (my favorite way to shop). Or, you can get several people the same kind of gift or go with gift certificates/gift cards. One of the most important tools for planning ahead--a calendar!! Write down each party, each get-together and important tasks to do (like baking pies) and check the calendar each day. Plan ahead for childcare for Christmas parties a few weeks early and you hopefully won't be left hanging on to the youngins (my big hope!).
I'm hoping that by planning ahead and organizing well, we can save ourselves lots of stress and anxiety and then really ENJOY and appreciate the REAL meaning of the holiday season--thankful for what God has blessed us with, and using it for His glory and to love our families and friends.