House & Holidays Plan Week 2: Calendar and Creativity

House and Holidays Plan 2016
September 4 - 10, 2016

During the holidays, it's easy to feel stressed and overwhelmed--and that goes double for those planning homemade holiday gifts! Time to tackle calendars and creative spaces in the House & Holidays Plan.

This week, the Plan's holiday prep assignments focus on the bones for efficient holiday planning: calendars. We'll work on time management and scheduling this week, as we put holiday prep chores on the fast track.

Household focus: creative spaces. 'Deck the halls' is easier when you have an efficient work area for crafts, gifts and gift wrapping. What's the state of your creative space?

Whether a sewing corner or a quilting room, a rolling crafts cart or dedicated arts-and-crafts closet, spend this week decluttering, organizing and cleaning out the creative spaces in your home.

This Week's Focus:
Calendars and Creative Spaces

It takes time and effort to come up with a realistic plan for the weeks ahead, and to do so, the calendar is critical! This week, we chart the course of the holiday season, planning travel, guests and celebrations.

Beginning Christmas planning early grants a bonus: time for handmade holidays! Will you'll craft gifts, decorations or paper crafts this year? If so, you'll need a well-organized workspace, so this week, we'll declutter, clean and organize the areas of our home used for crafting, sewing, or paper crafting.

Get inspired with these ideas from the Web:

This Week's Household Checklist

  • Declutter and clean creative spaces. Whether it's a corner of the kitchen table or a dedicated crafts room, what's the state of your creative space? Is it efficient and easy to use, or bulging and bloated? This week, take the STOP clutter method to areas where you wrap gifts, sew, work on scrapbooks or make crafts. When the clutter's conquered, clean your space for happy seasonal crafting.
  • Assess stored crafts materials. Time to head to the stash--fabric, paper or crafts--to take a look at household supplies. Will you need to replace crafts basics like tape, glue, paper or scissors? This week's school supply sales are a great time to stock up in the crafts closet.

This Week's Holiday Prep Checklist

  • Create a seasonal calendar. Take control of your time with a simple family calendar for the holiday months ... or beyond! Whether you use a smartphone app or our printable calendars, start a holiday calendar to track events, celebrations and deadlines.
  • Plan holiday travel. Start early to get the best--and cheapest--options for plane tickets, hotel reservations and event tickets.
  • Hold a scheduling session. Little things mean a lot--and never more than during the holidays--so schedule furnace checks, carpet cleaning, a family photo session and chimney inspection now.
  • Start a set of tear files. As you read holiday magazines or browse gift catalogs, tear our articles with recipes, decor ideas, gift suggestions or holiday traditions. Staple article pages together and place in labeled file folders ("Decor", "Holiday Recipes", "Gift Ideas") or page protectors in the Christmas planner.
  • Start--and use--a shopping list. Tracking "to-buy" items in one place saves time all year, but is crucial during the busy run-up to the holidays. Get the list habit now!
  • Review gift lists. How is the Master Gift List coming along? If you need more gift idea inspiration, add a Gift Ideas Planner page to your House & Holidays Planner. It'll help you track interests, sizes and preferences of loved ones.
  • Inventory unfinished crafts projects. Remember the Crafter's Rule of Four: if you have more than four unfinished crafts projects, or if any single project is more than four years old, don't schedule any new crafts! Finish the old ones this year--you've already got a head start on the process and the price is right! Rout out projects you've begun, and take advantage of the time already invested in them for happy crafting.
  • Begin a "Gifts to Make" list. Christmas crafters benefit by starting early. Begin working on holiday gifts, decor items and crafts now, for a stress-free season.

This Week's Planner Pages to Print

Week 2 Checklist
Gifts to Make List
Shopping List
Gift Ideas Planner