Have you started planning for the holidays? You’ve made travel arrangements, decided who’s hosting Thanksgiving dinner and your Holiday photo cards are ready to mail? Well, consider yourself a superhero because most of us don’t even want to think about the holidays yet. But if you get started on your holiday checklist now, you can eliminate some of the last-minute craziness and stress of the holiday season.

Holiday Planning Checklist
Talk to your relatives.
This may seem obvious, but rather than assuming plans will be the same as last year and that Aunt Susie will be hosting Thanksgiving as usual, you should ask the question and make plans accordingly. And if you are hosting (or can’t this year) let people know now, so they can make plans.

Keep your eyes peeled for deals. Whether you’re setting the Thanksgiving table, trimming the tree or decking the halls, decorating for the holidays takes time, money and planning, especially if you’re young and just starting out. You can be collecting ideas all year long, and keeping a lookout for sale items you can turn into something beautiful.

Holiday Planning Checklist
Take that family photo.
If you haven’t done this yet, it’s time to get it on the calendar. Whether you hire a photographer or take them yourself, this is the first and most important step toward creating your Christmas cards. Our blog is full of family photo ideas to get you started! Once you have photos you can use, you can order your Christmas cards in minutes.

Start planning for Thanksgiving. If you’re looking to change things up this year, it’s not hard to find new recipes and decorating ideas in magazines or online. Whether you’re hosting, or just bringing a side dish, now is the time to be looking for new recipes to try. You might even want to test out a few recipes on your family, to see if you’ve found a winner.

Fall decorations
Fall decorations.
It’s time to clean out the flower boxes or pots and find an autumn look that will take you from Halloween through Thanksgiving.

Start your Christmas gift list. It’s never too early to start thinking about Christmas gifts, both for yourself and for your family. Write down ideas for each person as they come to you, so you don’t forget them. That way you’ll cut down on impulse buys and be ready to buy what you need when it’s on sale. Also, think about good gift ideas for yourself because someone is bound to ask for ideas.

Watch for coming installments of our Holiday Checklist as the holidays get closer!

Images by: Summerfield; Curiosita Ellya