November is upon us (where has the year gone?), and Thanksgiving is next week (already!), which means the stress levels have already started to increase. With some pre-planning, you can feel more in control and less stressed. My holiday checklist may be helpful.  

SOS - I love lists, unknown photo credit


  • Schedule family portraits
  • Write holiday events and parties on the family calendar
  • Send out Save-The-Date cards
  • Update list for card mailing
  • Purchase stamps
  • Address holiday cards
  • Clean the oven and the refrigerator

 December, 3-4 weeks before

  • Pull out holiday decor, only put out the things you love, donate the rest
  • Set up holiday “staging” area where you keep wrapping paper and holiday supplies

 December, 2-3 weeks before

  • Clean out your refrigerator
  • Take inventory of pantry, toss expired items, add to grocery list
  • Start grocery list, finalize menu, assign contributors, purchase non-perishables
  • Purchase gifts, wrap immediately
  • Buy batteries to insert into toys and electronics
  • Mail out holiday cards
  • Mail out-of-town gifts
  • Begin baking. Freeze breads and cookie dough.

 December, 1 week before

  • Finalize gift purchases, finish wrapping
  • Confirm dinner guests
  • Wash china and linens
  • Clean house
  • If having overnight guests, change bed linens

 December, 1-2 days before

  • If feasible, set table
  • Prep for meal by pre-cooking as much as possible
  • Replace or recharge batteries on camera and video equipment
  • Purchase centerpiece or fresh flowers
  • Buy remaining items on grocery list

 After the holidays

  • Purchase holiday cards for next year (store with holiday decorations if possible)
  • Inventory wrapping paper and gift bags, purchase only as needed
  • Remove holiday decorations, china, and linens, store carefully
  • Write ThankYou notes
  • Take inventory of what you have in your environment and make decisions on what to keep, what to toss, and what to donate. Place new items in their “homes”

If you need help getting your home holiday ready, give Andrea a call at (480) 382-1085 or visit the Get Started page.