Prepping for the Holidays
It may be October but I’m already in holiday prep mode. Anybody else secretly wanting to put up their Christmas tree already? You’re not alone, girl you’re not alone. I’m holding off on the account of my husband. He thinks I’m crazy enough, and he may send me to the loony bin if I put my Christmas tree up in October. He’s a little more traditional than I am. I’m the over the top one in this relationship. But seriously though, just because my Christmas tree isn’t up doesn’t mean I’m not getting things ready for the holidays. Soon enough we will be trimming the tree, baking cookies and sitting for hours watching the Hallmark Channel.
Most of our extended family members live in Indiana and Florida so we typically travel some around Thanksgiving and Christmas. And when we’re not traveling to see them, some of them are usually visiting us. Last year we spent Thanksgiving In Indiana and celebrated my grandma’s 86th birthday. It was such an honor to make her a cake with red birds and fresh berries on top, which are two of her favorite things. She’s always been one to appreciate nature and God’s creation. When I was young she taught me gardening, how to arrange plants to create a landscape, and make flower arrangements in containers. She also shared her skill of art and poetry. She could whip up a molasses cookie without a recipe and she always shared the love of Jesus. She could quote scripture like none other. I’m pretty sure she has stored many treasures in heaven and will have a lovely crown of jewels and pearls one day.
This year we will be going to Indiana a little earlier to welcome a new baby to the family. My brother and his wife are expecting a baby girl and I’m super excited to get all my baby snuggles. So, yes we’ll be traveling, and well also return home just in time to host my in-laws for Thanksgiving. Then all of the sudden it’s December. See how fast time goes?
There are a few things I do in mid-October to help make the transition into this magical season a little smoother. My goal is definitely more time to sit around sipping hot cocoa, watching those Hallmark moves with the ones I love when that time comes around. So right about now, if you drop by you will find me doing the following:
I do a “spring “ cleaning. Windows, blinds, curtains, baseboards, ceiling fans, and all the cleaning that doesn’t get completed on a weekly basis.
I have my carpets cleaned. My mom always did this before Thanksgiving so I guess that’s way I do this. Does anyone else clean carpets for Christmas? I like to be sure this is done before I put up my Christmas decorations. Sometimes I rent a machine and do it myself, but this year I’m hiring a local company.
I rearrange any furniture that needs moved to make room for my Christmas trees.
I along with my kids have a toy and clothes clean-out day. I have them create three piles; a trash, give, and keep pile. This helps them make room for any new gifts and it creates a giving heart too!
I clean out my freezers, refrigerators, and my pantry. This helps me see what I have that needs to be used, and it allows room for all those seasonal extras.
I stock my liquor and drink cabinet. If you know my in-laws then you understand why this is a must. They like happy hour, and happy hour usually makes for a happy mama too! It’s a win win! Really though, it’s never too soon to fill up the wine rack, grab a few bottles of champagne for those Mimosas, and pick up your most used holiday cocktail supplies such as Vodka and Bourbon. I also pick up a few cases of soda and water to have on hand. With extra company we need extra drinks. I usually just grab an extra item or two every time I go to the store, then I’m all stocked up when I need it.
October is also a great time to stock up on those extra baking supplies. Most stores start stocking their holiday baking isle in late October so go ahead grab some extra flour, sugar, or a package of chocolate chips next time your in the grocery store. A few other baking must have include baking powder, baking soda, good vanilla, cinnamon, ginger, and cocoa powder. These are a few things I find not everyone has on hand all the time, so check your pantry then stock up.
I begin decking the halls November first. It usually takes me three good days to get everything accomplished and cleaned back up. But once it’s done I feel like I have plenty of time to enjoy the season. I hope this helps you and maybe you will find entertaining a little easier this season.