Thursday, October 1, 2009
Tis the Season to Be Jolly......
I know what you are thinking, its not christmas yet! But its just around the corner, its only 83 days, which is just under 12 weeks away and it will be here before you know it! So don't stress, now is the time to start preparing yourself and stocking all the little bits and pieces that help make christmas special for you and your family.
Make a List
Santa does this and I love making lists too. I love lists because you can get all your ideas out and see them on paper. This helps you plan and organise what you need and how you need to get it. Make a list of what you want to make and then what you will need to make for your christmas dinner/lunch etc. The stores are already stocking Christmas decorations and the like so don't think you won't be able to start it now. Go down the list and see if there is anything you can purchase now that can be stored in your freezer or in your cupboard. For example, you could purchase a turkey roll easily now and keep in your freezer until Christmas. You can also purchase drinks, lollies, chips, cranberry sauce, sauces, seasonings, the list can go on. Each time you go shopping add a few of your Christmas food list items on your list or check what comes on special and stock up. If you start now, you will find that you will have most of your goods and there will be little or less stress when the christmas rush begins. If you are part of a big family like mine, start asking now what everyone wants. We actually do a christmas draw where we have all our name in a hat and the name we pull out is who we are buying for. I like doing this because you only have one adult to worry about and you can spend more money on one present. As there are 10 cousins on my side and over 20 cousins(nieces and nephews) on my hubby's family we also do a christmas draw for the cousins. We try and do this around this time of year so we can start getting the presents sorted out before the big rush begins. I tell you from personal experience, there is nothing sweeter than having all your christmas shopping sorted out by the 1st of Decemember. There is no crazy rushing around trying to find the same thing everyone else is looking for. I don't know about you, but I can't stand trying to find a park in a shopping centre carpark the few weeks before christmas. Everyone goes into crazy mode and I have seen some really doozy road/carpark rage arguments!
Anyway, my message to you all is to start now. You will find you are calmer and can make better decisions that will save you money and time.
Its a good idea to utilise your crafty talents as much as possible during the Christmas season. It doesn't necessarily have to be making craft, you could also make food for presents. There are a range of ideas out there where you can make items that will save you money and I don't know about you but I love getting handmade food or craft items. I love getting something unique and creative, and even more so, ideas to borrow for my own craft ideas!!!! Here are some ideas of foods that I have either made or want to make or recieved that I think are great and don't cost much at all:
Flavoured salts for cooking - so cheap as to make and easy to use, i will post the recipe when I find it!!!
Cookies - or jars of cookie mixtures click on the link to see a version of cookies in a jar.
Caramel apples -- checkout Natalie's blog for a great recipe
Rocky Road - good old aussie favourite
Relishes or Jams
Cake pops - this is what I am looking to do this year!
Cake Balls - Bakerella is one of my favourite blogs, there are so many great ideas here!
Mallow puddings - these are too easy! Purchase some Arnotts Royals biscuits drop some melted white chocolate on top. Chop up some dried strawberry or glace cherry and add a little piece to top of white chocolate and you have a mallow pudding!!! So easy
On The other Hand...
You could make your own cards
Make christmas decorations for presents, I love handmade ornarments and decorations
I made crayon holders for my nieces and nephew last year and library bags. The link I have for the crayon holder to not the one I ended up using but its where I started. I ened up making up my own pattern. If I have time I will load up a tutorial, but the patterns and ideas for these are rather simple.
Make your own canvas - this is a great idea for kids. You don't have to be an amazing artists. You can see on a previous post of mine you can use buttons to make cute picture or you can just paint some bright colour bubbles, or I purchased some diamonte words from Spotlight and covered a canvas with cute papter and stuck the words to the paper. I will get a pic when my camera battery is recharged. The whole think cost me around $15.
If you are don't feel like you can make your own craft items but would like to have something handmade then you can still achieve this. Below are some links to sites I love to visit. These sites sell all handmade items. I checked xe.com today and the USD is still around 0.86 to an aussie dollar, so its a good time to purchase some items for christmas.
Good luck with your Christmas shopping and preparations:)